Friday, February 3, 2023

Struggles with Publishing

 I actually hate self publishing. I'm not very computer savvy, and everything I do here is a result of frustrated determination and help from friends. Believe it or not, I used to excel at computers. I had a 95% average in my computer class, but after I left high school, I didn't have access to personal computers for years. By the time I got myself a computer, everything I'd learned was obsolete and I had to start from scratch without any help. 

But eventually I learned, and muddled through. Dealing with Windows did make things easier, but there was the Internet to get through. Still not bad. Learning to blog? Got personal, step by step help from former critique partner Dawn Dalton. 

Then came self-publishing. Hoo-boy. There were a lot of tears and some screaming. Some of you may remember when Her True Name: Volume Two arrived in the format of a big coloring book, except with BIG letters. I'd ordered 18 of them, and decided to market them as collectors items because there was no way in Hell the rest of them were coming out that way. What a mess...but believe it or not, they all went. 

My editor and friend Heather Savage Fransen recommended Draft2Digital and what a blessing! Thanks, Heather! I couldn't believe how easy it was to use! But here comes the glitch. 

I had to figure out how to get PAID. This is not a computer struggle, but a banking one. I sent out an SOS about it on my author page, and no one touched it. So this is why I'm sharing it with you. 

I went to my Credit Union first. They were lovely, and gave me a print out of all the numbers I needed since I didn't have a checking account with them. It included my account number, transit and route numbers, SWIFT number...It wasn't until I got home, I realized there was no IBAN number. What is it? I don't know. Neither did the woman I spoke to on the phone. 

So I called D2D. They didn't know what an IBAN number was either. I'm almost in tears at the frustration and the wonderful woman I spoke to says, "Let me ask my supervisor." and she put me on hold. I still don't know what an IBAN number is, but as a Canadian--I don't need one. I can ignore that part of the application. That was a load off my mind. I thanked her, and told her I'd try again. 

Still didn't work. Certain numbers were just plain rejected, including the SWIFT number. I lay awake for two days, frustrated to the point of angry rage tears. Then it occurred to me...

They said BANK numbers. I was using a Credit Union. Are they different? YES, they are. 

I went to my bank this time. I got a teller in training, and the amazing Indian woman training her--I wish I'd gotten her name--because she saved my sanity. The trainee had no idea what I needed, but her trainer did. She immediately went to the printer and printed out a sheet that looked much like the one I got from the Credit Union, BUT...

She walked me through it. This is your account number, this is your transit number, etcetera. I was surprised to learn that the SWIFT number isn't a number but letters. For Scotiabank, it's NOSCATT. That was a surprise, but it went through just fine. 

Here's the super important part that I never would have known if she hadn't told me. I can't remember what the name of the number they wanted was, but it's nine digits. (Sorry...I'm NOT going back in there to look.) She wrote over the first five digits of my account number and marked them 'transit' then she told me I would need those digits, not just for transit, but for the nine digit number....THEN she underlined three digits in the Canadian Clearing Code. Those three numbers were the ones needed in front of the transit numbers, which were the first five digits of my account number. 

I left, feeling a lot better, even though I can count, and that was eight numbers, not nine. It had better work!

Nope. Rejected. How could this not work again? So f#%ing frustrating, but....What if I put a space? Or a hyphen...?

IT WORKED!! As far as I know.  I filled out the tax interview with the promise that if anything isn't right, I will fix it within 30 days. So far, so good. I can't believe the release I felt. Like I had purged my lungs and run a marathon. I slept well that night. It's been over a week, and I've heard nothing from D2D. Feels like a win. I hope. 

I want to hug that woman. Next time I go to that bank, I'm going to tell her how STELLAR she is. I'm going to put her name in the acknowledgements for Her True Name: Volume Three. In my books, She was doing her job, but for me, it was a life saver.