A self-published author's diary, Self publishing, Self-pub corner

A Self-Published Author’s Diary: The Groundhog Day of Formatting and lip synching…

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Sometimes, formatting bilingual books feels like a Groundhog day. It starts over and over again and even if I feel like I have perfected the process, there are still issues. I have files that are called UPDATE 1, UPDATE 2, UPDATE 3….and so on and so on. Formatting bilingual books is slightly more complicated, in my view, than formatting my regular manuscripts, just because I have to ensure those pesky page breaks actually happen when they’re supposed to.

And some of you might ask, “But Elodie, why don’t you use all of this time to write and publish original content?” And this is a great question. Because I have plenty of ideas. I have ideas about a series, I’m finishing writing my first rom-com and I’m planning this as a series of standalone novels. So, I have ideas. And I am writing, albeit maybe not as much as I’d like to.

But I know that my bilingual books generate income.

And while I am developing a strategy (which I will share with you on this blog and more in detail in my weekly email) for my upcoming novels and series, I know that working on those bilingual manuscripts is helpful to my business. And as a language learner (currently learning Russian on Duolingo for 250 days straight :-)) and former language teacher, I love that those bilingual books might help people who are learning a language.

Talking about languages, I saw this post on Instagram the other day that really resonated and thought I’d share it with you all. It says, “If someone is speaking to you in a foreign accent, they are smart enough to know two languages and brave enough to do their job in their second.” 


Anyways…I spent a lot of hours this week finalizing another English/German book and this was only a tiny portion of the work that I needed to do for this particular book. And I’m happy to report that I did manage to publish EINE ZWEITE CHANCE (TEIL 1) / A SECOND CHANCE (PART 1) – Zweisprachiges Buch Deutsch / Englisch – Bilingual book: German / Englisch. (Amazon.de, Amazon.com, Google Play, iTunes, Kobo…)

To publish this book, I needed to:

(1) Using the manuscript in English and the manuscript in German, format the bilingual edition (manually) with one page in German and the corresponding text in English on the other side.

(2) Have a freelancer language specialist proofread the German translation one more time.

(3) Go through all the changes, review and implement the chances in the translation.

(4) Ensure that the pdf interior has the correct formatting. (that took FOREVER as every single time I would upload the word document, there was something wrong with it…one tab too many and that can really mess with the formatting. I use Draft2Digital to make the interior of the book.

(4) Design the cover.

(5) Add a series page on Kindle Direct Publishing, Draft2Digital and Google Play for “Zweisprachiges Buch Englisch Deutsch Nick & Em”.

(6) Add all the metadata on all platforms (summary, keywords, categories and so on…)

(7) Upload the files for the ebooks.

(8) Create the paperback in Kindle Direct Publishing…

As mentioned…the formatting can be slightly frustrating at times. If my husband would read this, he would chuckle at the “slightly”. 🙂

Some videos of the actual process are included in my weekly email...

But the process can also be fun. 🙂 While I cannot listen to music when I am actually in the process of copying and pasting the German text to fit the English text and vice versa, I do sing very badly or lip synch in this case, when I’m making sure the format is correct (headings where there’s supposed to be headings, page break at the right spot, no extra paragraph…).

I am sharing a video of my lip synching one of the Bridgerton’s musical demo song in my weekly email too..:-)

And this was a bit of behind-the-scenes of a tiny portion of the work behind my latest bilingual book.

Last week, I shared with my top 3 self-publishing mistakes, if you’d like to get a FREE pdf of my top 5 self-publishing mistakes and receive weekly emails from me: just click here or on this cover, add your email and you’ll get access to the full pdf…

Thank you for reading!

Did you enjoy this post? Do you want to help support me and my writing? You can forward this blog post to someone who might be interested, buy my books and/or audiobooks and as always, don’t hesitate to leave me a comment.

If you have any questions about my adventures in self-publishing or anything I shared with you today, don’t hesitate to reach out and I’ll make sure to reply in my email next week.

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2 thoughts on “A Self-Published Author’s Diary: The Groundhog Day of Formatting and lip synching…”

Comments put a smile on my face :-)

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