advice

One hour and eleven minutes of me trying not to swear

The awesome Laura Dawson invited me to do a webinar on the basics of book design, as part of a series for Bowker’s SelfPublishedAuthor.com. Our kindly hosts/co-presenters at Data Conversion Laboratory have posted a video of the session, so now you can follow along with bated breath as I try to remember not to say […]

What stupid is

What stupid is

I was sitting on my couch hoarding a “Sharing Size” box of Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies and clicking and re-clicking “x new Tweets” this evening, when I was rescued by a friend who was having some technical difficulty with an e-book she was building. A few of our Twitter friends made suggestions on how to troubleshoot […]

Because I am mean and like to rain on parades…

Because I am mean and like to rain on parades…

All day I’ve been seeing tweets from @kobo and friends about their having the No. 1 e-reading app in the iTunes store—e.g., [blackbirdpie url=”http://twitter.com/KoboJason/status/71222166464643072″] I’m so happy for them. No, really. For several months now, Kobo’s iOS app has been, mainly because of the stats and the activity tracker, my e-reading application of choice. That […]

Cracking the coding code

Cracking the coding code

Got an e-mail from a fellow book designer this morning asking, “Do you have a blog post about marking up a MS for the designer/typesetter?” Um, I couldn’t remember; had to search my own blog to find out. I found I’d written two posts in which such issues come into play— May I take your […]

Room for improvement. No—wait—airplane hangar for improvement.

Below are slides from a presentation Liza Daly gave at the Digital Book World conference last week. There are elaborative notes on the DBW site. Getting Past Good Enough Ebooks: Liza Daly

When, not if

When, not if

Today over tea I was holding forth about backup methods, which reminded me that I’ve long meant to post something about how I’ve been handling it. To wit: right now, I’ve got a two-part system—constant partial backup online via SugarSync and less frequent but complete offline backup using Time Machine and an external hard drive. […]

Please, Mister Postman

Please, Mister Postman

Oh, I think I need to make a field trip to the 11215 post office . . . Dear Postmaster Potter: I am writing to ask if you would please consider redecorating my local post office. Maybe you have heard of it: 11215. It’s the Park Slope Station in Brooklyn, New York, and I believe […]

Big Is Beautiful

Big Is Beautiful

I like getting to play Dear Abby! Though lately my responses read less like sage advice and more like columns by The Non-Expert—only not funny. Yesterday Sarah wrote with some questions: Since 2002, I have been editor for our local historical society’s 20-page quarterly. When I first started, I did it in an old version […]

Attn.: InDesign Salvage Operations Team

Attn.: InDesign Salvage Operations Team

Justin asks, do you have any tips for recovering “damaged” files? when i try to open a layout i was just working on, it prompts me to fix the file from recovered data, then notifies me that the file may be damaged; it starts to recover, but then the program quits altogether. [. . .] […]

In like a lion, out like a lamb

In like a lion, out like a lamb

I spent a ridiculous amount of time yesterday converting two files: one Quark XPress 6 document to InDesign CS4, and one WordPerfect document to MS Word 2004. Part of the time-suck was because my apartment is disorganized and I couldn’t, um, find one of my laptops. Most of it, though, was because I’ve forgotten a […]