The above picture is the third proof of Peaceful Moments that I requested from Amazon. It arrived Friday evening and I was excited to hold it in my hand! As I cradled it and paged through it my mind went back over the two previous proofs I had requested. The first copy was lost in shipping. The next proof had errors that I and my proofreaders didn’t pick up on. Finally, I was holding the third one. They say that the third time is a charm, right? Is my book finally ready to go to the public? After carefully reading through this copy, I decided that it’s finally time to hit the publish button! Woohoo!!!! How exciting! It was Sunday afternoon the boys were away and Kevin was out taking Lazarus for a walk so there was nobody to witness my crazy little celebration. I did a little happy dance all around the living room before hitting the publish button! Hooray!!!! My publishing journey was finally over! Or so I thought…
Tuesday morning I opened up my email to find a disappointing note from Amazon saying that they reviewed my book and found a “problem.” Once you hit the publish button the book is not automatically published. First, it is sent for final review. In the final review, a review bot flagged Peaceful Moments as a “low-content book.” This means it’s not eligible for an ISBN number. This also would mean that Amazon would not promote it and it couldn’t be sold in stores because books need an ISBN number to be sold in stores. I contacted Amazon and contested their findings.
I think the review bots flagged my book as low content because my poetry is a part of my artwork. The artwork would be considered pictures and then the opposite page just has a Bible verse and journaling lines. Technically the book is just pictures and journal pages which to a non-human machine would register as no content. In actuality, the book is rich in content and symbolism. (Yes, I’m prejudiced! It’s my baby, after all! LOL) I am praying that the human reviewers agree with me! But if they don’t, I have three options: publish it without an ISBN number, pay $125 to buy my own ISBN number, or look into using a different publisher. As you can see, my publishing journey is not as close to being finished as I thought it was on Sunday afternoon when I danced a jig around my living room!
As I sit here writing up this blog post, I reflect back on my journey of putting Peaceful Moments together. There were fun times such as prayerfully matching the paintings up with the correct poems and then praying over what verse was to go with each poem. Then there were the difficult times such as formatting issues with my computer as I was trying to put the book together. Then I had formatting issues again when I tried to upload the book to Amazon. I ended up having to reformat the whole book to even upload it which was highly frustrating and discouraging! Once I uploaded the book, I had cover issues to figure out. I wanted to use my own cover but I had difficulties uploading the correct file size. Roadblock upon roadblock popped up along my path to publishing the book but I persevered and overcame them. Sometimes there were long pitstops along the way but I would rest a bit and then get back on the path and start plodding along again. What I’m facing right now with Amazon is just another roadblock that I need to circumvent. This, too, will be figured out and overcome! I firmly believe that Peaceful Moments will be published and available to purchase by the end of January! God is faithful and He loves to make a way where there seems to be no way!
I will go before you and level the mountains [to make the crooked places straight]; I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut asunder the bars of iron. Isaiah 45:2 AMPC