2013 was a helluva year. Lots of personal drama. Evacuated because of a fire, followed by months of malaise from the smoke because the entire state of Colorado was on fire. Massive rains and subsequent flooding that destroyed my basement. Far too many days spent at the hospital with my children and grandbaby. One thing after another and wondering, oh god, what’s next?
But 2013 was an amazing year, too. The Amazing Poop Machine is happy, healthy and growing fast. Everyone is healthy now. I got a promotion–Larry Block has dubbed me The Production Goddess. (I’m practicing how to work that into casual conversation.) I worked with some incredible writers this year: Thomas Pluck, Randall Wood, Jerrold Mundis, Julia R. Barrett, Robert Silverberg, Katherine O’Neal, William Arnold, Sharon Reamer, Carole Nomarhas, Chuck Dixon, Steven Ramirez, Penny Watson, Marina Bridges, and far too many others to list. (Heh. I always wanted a job where I am paid to read, and now I have it and it’s the best job ever!)
I took part in a project that tops my Best Of list for all time. Lawrence Block’s new novel, The Burglar Who Counted the Spoons, which he decided to self publish. From the first read of the manuscript to receiving the gorgeous hardcover limited edition in the mail, it was The Dream Job. I ended up producing four editions, including a print-on-demand Large Print edition. (You can find the ebook and trade paperback here and the special limited edition here.)
The best part of the year was learning new skills. I’ve learned tons and tons about ebook covers. (And bless you brave folks who have allowed me to do my on-the-job-training with your books!)
I’ve learned to format fiction for CreateSpace print-on-demand editions. It’s way different than ebooks and a lot trickier, but it’s well worth the effort. (Pay no heed to the bald spots where I ripped out my hair in frustration. Heh.) At the risk of annoying the Hubris Gods, my book designs are pretty darned good.
In the coming year, I’ll be stretching way beyond ebooks. I want to do concierge publishing for writers who’ve reclaimed their back lists and need to bring them back to life. I’d like to offer troubleshooting and production consulting for do-it-yourselfers. I can even do graphics for ebooks–wouldn’t your ebook look delicious with something fun like this for your chapter heads and title page?
So buh-bye and sweet dreams to you, 2013. 2014 is here and it’s going to be a good one. I can feel it! And as a very special treat for all you writers out there, here it is, hot off the production line, available at CreateSpace, and soon available at Amazon and LB’s Book Store, the brand new print edition of Write For Your Life: The Home Seminar for Writers.
Holy New Year’s resolutions, Jaye-girl! I hope you achieve your heart’s desire. Larry’s right, you are The Production Goddess in addition to being the Obsessinator par excellence. Yes, 2013 was a year of contrasts, opposites. I both loved it and hated it. Mostly hated it. But you got your Amazing Poop Machine! She’s so shiny and new! There is not enough lemon curd in all the world to thank you… Well, maybe if my lemon tree keeps producing prodigiously… Love you and Happy 2014!
Happy 2014 to you, too, Julia. I’m telling you, there is a very good, strong feeling in the air. I don’t know what will happen, but I suspect it will be incredible.
I feel so very lucky to have found you, Jaye. Your production skills are unlike any other and your ebooks are beautiful. I continue to be impressed with everything you do. 2014 is going to be amazing. I can feel it.
It is, Margaret, it really is. I’m looking forward to whatever you (M.H. Mead) bring me this year.
Bring it on! 😀
Congratulations on all your accomplishments this year! I’m sure the new year will be even bigger and better, but hopefully, not as smoky.
A big fat YES to a non-smoky New Year. I’m still waiting for the smell of fireplace smoke to not cause a clutch in my chest. Heh.
The remarkable thing, dear Jaye, is that in a year filled with such inconvenient drama, you still managed to unleash a creative output that would boggle the mind of any of us less productive mortals. You created 7 gorgeous ebooks for me, and 1 (so far) for my husband Bill, created a website for me and did the time-consuming graphics for the pages of each of my 12 books, as well as giving advice and helping us to learn each of the steps needed along the way. AND you did it with such patience, grace, and such a sense of fun that we’ll always be grateful to you. I honestly don’t know what we would have done without you. So there’s one more thing you take with you from 2013 … the gratitude of those of us whose books you made beautiful and whose lives you made easier because of your help and your sparkling talent. Thank you, Jaye, and Happy New Year!
Ah, now I’m blushing, Katherine. Working on your books was a dream. I hope to get a chance to work on many, many more!