All posts by C.A. Simonson

C.A. Simonson is a freelance writer and author. Her award-winning short stories have appeared in seven anthologies. The Journey Home trilogy, "Love's Journey Home," "Love Looks Back," and "Love's Amazing Grace," are Christian fiction based on true events. She has also published two anthologies, one of short stories and one of devotions and poems. A children's speller/story coloring book was released in April 2017. Copies are available in paperback and digital format on Amazon, KOBO, iTunes, and Barnes and Noble or at Books are now available in audio format on When she is not writing, she is painting, crafting, or fishing.


Love’s Journey Home and Love Looks Back – Books I and II of the Journey Home series are on! If you don’ t like to read — listen! Both narrators have done the books justice and invoke great emotion. 

Get your FREE audio copy of either book by signing up for a free trial of, or contacting me *(below) for your free code!

front-cover_ribbonEver want to do something “different and meaningful” for Christmas? The family in The Christmas Adventure did something drastic besides.  What will they be willing to give up? Available on audio by mid-December.  Ready NOW to read free as an e-book.

These books are also available in e-book on Kindle and Nook, and as print copies. 


A resource for every kitchen newbie – new bride – college student – or just for fun. Food Hacks, Helps, and Hints has ideas and tips for choosing the best foods in the market, fixing and preparation hacks, quickie tips for tastier foods, and ideas on how to do it all faster! Coming in December! 


– All Perfect Stocking Stuffers for Christmas!


GET YOUR FREE CODE for an audiobook!


Format a Book for Self-Publication


You’ve written a book. You want to see it published. Where do you go from here?

Traditional vs. Vanity Presses

In the past, authors would choose to seek an agent and go for a traditional big-book publisher. This practice is becoming less and less popular as ‘indie’ (independent) authors learn to self-publish.  Don’t be confused between “self-publishing” and paying a company to print your book. Vanity presses abound and love to take your money to print your book. They may make lots of promises and get you to agree to buy hundreds of copies with the notion that they’ll promote you and your book. Don’t be fooled.

Self-Published Books

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Photo by Caio Resende on

Self-publishing through a print-on-demand company is totally different.  You do it yourself!  With enough technical knowledge, you can set up your book with the provided template, send it off, and within a week or two, you’re on the Amazon road. There are many such companies. I’ve worked with CreateSpace (now merging with Kindle Direct Publishing to become Media on Demand), Lulu, and Smashwords. Each are a little different. If you can do all the technical setup yourself, you pay nothing.

How Do They Make Money?

These companies can offer these services “for free” by charging an on-demand price when your book is printed. After all, nothing is really ‘free.’ Your royalty rate is from 35-70% of the price you charge for your book. What you charge for the book is up to you. Amazon takes their cut, CreateSpace or KDP takes their cut, and you get the rest. It’s paid for one book at a time as they print it. This is arranged when your book is being processed, and the percentage rate is up to you.  You design your own cover and interior design.  The company does not change it, edit it, or market it. It is all YOU. Your book reflects you.

Each print-on-demand company I’ve worked with also offers professional help for formatting, editing, book cover design, and marketing.  Of course, each of these services comes at a high price. That’s why it’s better to do it yourself – OR HIRE SOMEONE who knows what to do. Save yourself the headaches!

I Can Help You!

I can help you format your book with a professional interior design. Does this still mean you’re paying for a vanity press? The answer is no. Vanity presses “own” your book and receive a portion of your royalties. They often have a contract up to five years (or perpetuity) on your book.

When I assist others with the interior design of their book, it is a one-time fee for setup and publishing. All the proceeds – 100% of them – go back to the author once the “publish” button is pushed. It is published under your name and your logo (if you have one).  I have formatted almost thirty books and helped authors self-publish with CreateSpace or Lulu with great success. (See examples. I helped assist these authors with self-publishing as well as book cover design).

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Photo by on

Interior Design Guidelines

Interior design isn’t just making your 8-1/2 x 11 page fit into a 6×9 book format with mirror margins. It means selecting the right size and the color paper to match the topic. Choosing a readable web-ready font style and size, margin and line spacing that’s aesthetic to the eye, setting up headers and page numbers, and putting in an updateable table of contents is all a part of formatting. It’s knowing where to add the title page, copyright page, and all the other front copy. Back copy includes the author’s bio, and possibly an index, footnotes, or other information. It might also include adding drop caps for chapters, graphics, or pictures. Each of these must be formatted to the strict guidelines set up by the POD company.  Although a template is provided, some authors find this technical part difficult to navigate.

As a computer teacher with technical knowledge of over twenty years, my skills can help your book get off the ground without the frustration of you trying to figure it out on your own.

Sound intimating? Don’t know where to start?  Let me help!

  • Basic setup charge – $125 + $1 per 8.5×11 page of your book.
  • This includes all of the above and assumes the book has been edited and approved by you for final submission. I do not edit or change what you’ve written.
  • One free editing after proof is viewed
  • Pictures added have an additional charge as more setup is needed.
  • Turn-around time varies from 1-3 weeks.

Interested?  Give me a holler.