Terror from a Box

I stated Thursday that the realization hit, “This is really happening,” in regards to publishing The Adventure.

That realization was both happy (Yay, I made it this far!) and terrifying.

This post is the terrifying and how I’m dealing with it. =)

The updated proof arrived in the mail last Thursday. Eager child that I am, I heard the mailman drop the book against the door, and I ran to fetch it…

After tearing into the packaging, I held the book up and stared at it. A lump formed deep in my throat. Although the quality of the cover was better than the first copy, it still turned out blurry, amateurish looking. They say “don’t judge a book by its cover” but we all know it’s human nature to do so.

Panic warred in me like nervous butterflies turned into pterodactyls trying to escape. Painful in its intensity.

Two options opened before me.

Slump to the floor and have a good cry or figure out what went wrong, again. The former, trust me, tempted me with welcoming arms. But motion has always been my weapon in dealing with things. My brain, in its crazy moments, must know something is being done to fix whatever bothers it.

House is dirty, I have to clean. I’ve had an argument, how do I fix it? What do I say or do to make things right? Book cover turned out blurry, figure out why…and figure it out fast.

Contacting customer support with CreateSpace can be time consuming. So I shot off an email asking for help and then I turned to Google because any reply from CS can take 24 hours.

Then, when I’ve exhausted my brain to the point that it’s tied in knots, I pull in my Calvary. Namely, my husband. He comes to these problems with the idea that I’ve tried everything obvious and thus he has to think outside of the box.

This works well because he thinks completely sidewise to the way I think. We may have the same goal, but it’s almost a guarantee that we’ll reach it in completely different ways.

Finally, after much squabbling, which is our usual way of processing things, we figured out it all comes back to that pesky thing called PPI or DPI (Pixels per inch).

Quick technical explanation. When using Illustrator, you have to make sure it does not downgrade the PPI to 72 when you create a new image. It does this by default, thus downgrading the quality of any image you’ve made. For publishing, CreateSpace recommends 300 PPI. You can imagine the difference. Check out below what I’m talking about.

The fix for this required me going back and recreating all of the images on the cover at the higher quality. time consuming but maybe good for my brain since motion helps me.

First Proof:




Updated Proof:




Updated…This image is a print of the PDF off my own printer. The quality, along with the glossy finish, will be better from CreateSpace. New Proof shipped yesterday, so we’ll know if the quality is, in fact, up to snuff, by the end of the week.

Hopefully from these you can see the difference in print quality but even if you can’t, maybe due to my poor photo taking, I promise the actual quality on the book is better. So in creating a cover, watch out for PPI. It’s a sneaky little detail that’ll put holes in everything if you let it slip past your guard.



10 thoughts on “Terror from a Box”

  1. Ouch! Dealing with blurry book covers sounds like a real pain in the behind. Glad you’re figuring it out, Jennifer! Hope the third time’s the charm! 🙂

  2. Adapt and overcome! Keep up the great work, soon a dream will become a reality. I am so proud of you. Love ya

  3. “Just keep swimming” don’t you just love the idea. The other side is sooooo close you can see it. You have our support completely!
    Love you bunches – Mom

  4. Hiccups and bumps along the way. Any worthy journey may well have some. A journey takes you somewhere, so you adjust for the conditions along the way. The destination is drawing near, don’t stop now!

Join in the Adventure by leaving a reply =)