Wednesday, 31 July 2013

August Daily Word Challenge

August is a bit different ... instead of giving you words to use as inspiration we're giving you words that are 1) Alphabetical, and 2) All about scrapping/photo techniques or types of scrapbook page. They are mostly techniques that you'll already know and where you don't know them we'll provide the tutorial. Plus there's plenty of help available on the Digi Scrapping Divas Facebook group, of course!

By the time we get to September - when we have another fun month of challenges planned - you will have tried a whole lot of techniques you'd never thought of using.

Here's the list:

Each day on the Facebook group we'll give you hints/links to the tutorial and suggest alternatives if you're completely stuck. You can still use the words for inspiration, for example the word "texture" could be a photo of a child's favourite blankie as well as a textured paper on the page.

You'll see we're determined to get you using quickpages and Picmonkey. There are plenty of links to free quickpages in the Freebies group and everything we'll show you on Picmonkey is free. The conversations that  go

"How did you do that?"
"In Picmonkey. It's easy and it's free"
"Oh, I don't use Picmonkey"

are getting silly. Why would peeps not use something that's free in order to do what they want to do?

Hint: Never let a control freak make the monthly word list ...

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Layout Sketchbook on Amazon's Top 100 Bestsellers List

Three weeks ago I published "Scrapbook Layout Sketches" a Kindle eBook on Amazon.  Since then I've checked every day to see how many have sold or been checked out by Prime members.  Amazon updates the numbers throughout the day so I have been known to check more than once during the day!  Today I was very excited to find it was #20 in Papercrafts and #91 in Scrapbooking in the Crafts and Hobbies category.

I would love to get some feedback from anyone that has read it.  You can log in to Amazon to post a review.  In addition, Amazon follows up on books that are purchased and they'll send an email with a link to give a review.  Easy, peasy! It only takes a couple of minutes and I'd really appreciate it. 

If you haven't gotten Scrapbook Layout Sketches yet, clicking the image below will send you right over to Amazon.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Behind The Scenes

.... was our word challenge on our Facebook group today although this stunning page by the very talented Jonyce Ruiz would also fit our "Spontaneous Moment" challenge today.

The journaling reads:

"Three years ago, my Grandma lost her battle with cancer. I love my Grandma more than I can even say. Thinking about when we lost her, brings tears to my eyes. Remembering the special moments brings a smile to my face. My Grandma had a love of life that was infectious. She was spirited, honest and loved her family more than anything. There are so many special memories I have of her, one of them being my wedding day. As with most weddings, there were bumps along the way, but moments shared with my Grandma I will always hold close to my heart. She didn't always agree with me, but I knew that she respected me and my opinions. I love her so very much and miss her more than I can express. She was an amazing woman. I wish she were still here to meet Sarah and see what beautiful girls they are becoming."

How's that for journaling that tells even a complete stranger all about Jonyce's Grandma? It's like we were there when this photo was taken. The whole page is an inspiration and will be treasured by Jonyce's daughters.

I love these Behind The Scenes wedding pages. We can't get to my brother's wedding as hubby has just started on insulin injections and can't travel until everything settles down. I spent ages on the phone yesterday trying to explain to Mum that I need photos of everyone getting ready. It will be interesting to see what I get.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Writing and Publishing an eBook

Writing and publishing a book has never been easier!  Have you ever dreamed of being a published author?  I have!  Technology available today makes writing and publishing an eBook within every aspiring authors reach.  If you've decided to write a book there are many things you'll need to consider.

There are an abundance of formats to choose from.  You may recognize two of the most popular formats.  One is EPUB which can be read by Blackberry Playbook, Apple iBooks (iPhone, iPad, iPod), and Barnes & Noble Nook to name a few.  The other is KF8, also known as Amazon Kindle.

I chose to write a Kindle eBook.  Here are some of the things I really like.  First of all, it's easy!  You need a word processor such as, Microsoft Word, OpenOffice, Pages for Mac.  I use Microsoft Word.  Amazon has a huge, worldwide customer base and I thought their royalties were generous.   I think the behind the scenes faqs, helps and reports are great too.  I have a Kindle myself and a lot of other people have Kindles.  If you don't have a Kindle you can actually download a Kindle reader for free on you PC, iPhone, iPad, iPod, laptop, Blackberry, Android & more.  And if you are a Prime member on Amazon, and the author participates in KDP Select, you can borrow books and the author still gets paid royalties.

If you use Microsoft Word you can set up the formatting that works best for Kindle and save it.  Kindle doesn't "like" a lot of spacing or returns but you can set the formatting for the entire book and save it as a template for future books.  Word has spell check and grammar hints but you can also use to check for spelling mistakes, grammar, plagiarism, etc.

You'll also need a Cover.  You can hire a freelance artist to design the cover or you can do it yourself if you have a digital design application to create a .jpg file.  If you design it yourself you'll need access to artwork, either your own or public domain.  And you'll need public domain or purchased fonts.   Of course you'll want your cover to "pop".   It needs to catch the shoppers attention, have clearly legible fonts, few words and contrasting colors.

You can use keyword searches to decide on topics.  How-to books are great.  If you have an area of expertise search some of the keywords associated with your topic.  See how much competition you would have and what the price points are.  You don't want to select a topic that's already saturated!  If the topic looks like a good choice you'll need to set a competitive price.

Here is the cover I designed for my book "Scrapbook Layout Sketches".  I created it with three different background colors then before uploading it I asked a couple of friends for feedback.  We all agreed on this one.

And here are links to my eBook on Amazon.  If you are in the United States click here. And I just found out, duh, there's a different web address for my friends across the pond.  Here's the link for the UK.  If you get my eBook I hope you'll consider giving me a great review.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

July Daily Word Challenge

Our daily word challenges are strictly "No Rules"! Use the words how you like - they could be the subject of your photos, the title on your page, a jumping point to something completely different or just vaguely inspirational. Also we don't expect you to make a new page every day. You can show us something you made any time.

Here are the words for July. I made the page with Fayette Designs' Beach Therapy:

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Show us your pages on our Facebook Page!