The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Two-page slug spreads

Editing a proof copy

My editor dropped me an email Tuesday at lunchtime with a formatted proof copy of The Naturally Bug-Free Garden to look over. And, by the way, could I get it back to her by Wednesday morning? That didn't give me much room to be an over-achiever, but I still managed to get my corrections back to her by 5 pm Tuesday. (Good thing it was pouring down rain and thus being outside held little appeal.)

Cover pages

I've been waiting with baited breath to see what Skyhorse would come up with for the interior design of this book since half of the reason I signed a deal with them in the first place was because I felt like the images deserved to be seen in print. Of course, Skyhorse's designer made very different decisions than I did when I first laid out the book, planning to self-publish it on paper...but in many cases I like Skyhorse's version much better. For example, take a look at the two-page title spreads above, my version on the top and Skyhorse's below. I'm not ashamed to say that theirs makes mine look homemade.

(By the way, if you're not used to looking at files like this, ignore the white space around the edges and the black lines on the corners. The book is set up with "bleed," meaning that the images will go right off the edge of the page like you'd see in a glossy magazine rather than having a white border around them. This is fancy formatting that gave me fits when I tried to do it myself.)

Duck page

Our duckies will be enjoying full-page billing, as will one of my favorite toads, but for some reason Skyhorse's designer didn't opt to turn my awesome slug photo into a two-page spread. I can't imagine why not! Don't they realize that my readers will want to post those slugs on their walls as pin-up models?

Interestingly, despite having added 31% more words between formatting the manuscript for myself and sending the file to my publisher, the page count remains the same --- 126 pages even. I'm not sure why Amazon thinks the book will be 208 pages long, but I guess preorder pages are often based on guesswork. Here are a few pre-order links in case you'd like to enjoy this glossy paperback when it comes to life this spring:

I hope seeing a book slowly make its way into print is almost as interesting as my usual posting goat poop. Now isn't that memory making slug pinups look pretty good?

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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