Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Writer's View: A. William Benitez


This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. The author will be awarding a $5 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter at each stop and a Grand Prize of a $50 Amazon GC at the end of the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

The Computer As My Shop


My desktop computer and my laptop are much more than just workstations for writing, editing, layout, formatting, and creating covers. They are workshops where all aspects of my books, ebooks, covers, blogs, web sites, and many more projects are created. While “studio” may be a more appropriate word for the place where these creative tasks take place, “shop” strikes a more accurate cord with me after running my own woodworking shop for over 25 years. Perhaps “office” is a more appropriate choice for you.

My woodworking shop contained a large collection of hand and power tools used to build hundreds of pieces of commissioned furniture and cabinets over the years. Perhaps that's why I view the large collection of software programs (applications) in my computer and laptop as the tools of my present work. I couldn't function without the woodworking tools and in the same way I'm careful to select tools that serve me well for my publishing business.

Many of my associates find tablets and their related Apps invaluable but for me they fall short. In my work the display size is important. A giant monitor isn't critical but it helps and I have a 23 inch for my office workstation. My 17 inch laptop is great when I want a break from my workstation and go out on the deck or in front of the fireplace in the living room. When I travel my 13 inch laptop is light but still has an adequate size display. While I can easily live with a touchpad instead of a mouse, a good keyboard is essential and a touch screen keyboard that dominates half the display won't do.

I deal with many different people who provide me content in various ways so a DVD, preferably a writer, is an essential tool. While it's true that you can connect one to a tablet, it's just one more thing to carry and tends to defeat the portability aspect of a tablet. My 13 inch laptop has it all built in and ready to go anywhere and can easily handle every task I perform on my office desktop and my large laptop.

Tablets are gaining popularity everyday with new and larger models. It could be they will soon be adequate for all the tasks I have to do. For now I will stick with my workstation and laptop which serve so well as my publishing shop. A tablet may be the perfect thing for you, just make certain you aren't overwhelmed by the glitz of a tablet that can’t perform all the required tasks.

If you're like me, you'll want your next computer to be your shop, studio, or office, containing all the tools you need to do your job, whatever it happens to be. For me, most existing tablets fall short. You may have a different experience.

The View From My Workstation


Photo One shows the view of my workstation from my chair. Directly ahead is my 23 inch monitor that is invaluable when doing layout, formatting, and creating covers. To the left is a granite light I received as a gift long ago and just feels good and soothing. At the far right is my 17 inch laptop that I move to the deck or living room to work. Behind that are several external hard drives I use because I am definitely somewhat of a backup freak.

Photo Two is the view of the window in my office that is directly behind me and is just open to the trees and my neighborhood.

At present I share this office with my wife Barbara who is also a writer. She has her own desk in the opposite corner. I am presently working on building an office outside in what was formerly a storage area. My wife has dubbed this my man cave.

About the Author:
From age twelve I spent my summers and weekends working with my dad, a general contractor, building homes and buildings. I contracted my first home at age nineteen and built my own home by age twenty. For more than 30 years I have operated one-person businesses. Twelve years of my life were spent working for local government managing federally-assisted housing programs. I started as an inspector with a three month assignment and was Director of Community Improvement with 78 employees when I resigned to do writing and consulting.

Writing, Publishing and Consulting


During the 80’s I established Rehab Notes Library a publishing company that published a monthly newsletter (Rehab Notes) with subscribers in all 50 states, Canada and England. I also did consulting and public speaking on housing related topics for agencies and organizations in cities across the country and testified before the U.S. Congress on housing issues.

I wrote and published nine guidebooks on the subject of housing rehabilitation. After 1980 when most federal funding was pulled from housing activities, I took advantage of my construction and business experience and started a handyman and woodworking business.

Over Twenty Years of Woodworking


For over twenty years, first in Tampa, Florida, and then in Austin, Texas, I built hundreds of small and large cabinet and furniture projects for individuals, companies and government agencies. During these years I began writing books about my woodworking business experiences.

Positive Publishing


In 2007 I established Positive Imaging, LLC, to publish a children’s book for my wife and then begin publishing my own books and that of other using methods I call positive publishing. To date we have published twelve paperback books, a half dozen ebooks, and presently have several books in various levels of completion.

Computer Experience


My computer experience dates back more than fifteen years and began in response to poor technical support for our computers. I used home study to acquire A+ and Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer Certifications.

I was born and raised in Tampa, Florida and moved to Austin, Texas in 1986, where I now live with my wife, Barbara Frances. We have three adult children, eight grand-children, and two great grandchildren.

a. Main Sales/Info Page – http://selfpublishingworkbook.com

b. Createspace Fulfillment Page - https://www.createspace.com/3851405

2. Main Positive Imaging, LLC Site – http://positive-imaging.com

3. Self Publishing Support Blog - http://self-publishing-support.com

4. PublishingSimplified Blog - http://publishingsimplified.com

Frustration With Traditional Publishers Leads To Self Publishing

In 2007 my wife Barbara completed a wonderful children’s chapter book called Lottie’s Adventure and begin sending it to traditional publishers. Despite some great preliminary reviews, all she got was rejections and lack of response. This was quite frustrating for her and I wanted to help.

As an IT professional, I had read a lot about print on demand and made up my mind to learn all about it and then publish Lottie’s Adventure. It was a lengthy learning curve and I made lots of mistakes including the selection of a POD company that was more expensive than necessary. Nevertheless, we produced a high quality book and in spite of our lack of knowledge we sold quite a few copies of Lottie’s Adventure.

After this success I realized that self publishing had potential for some of my own writing and began developing effective, efficient, and lower cost methods to publish the books that I wrote. Since then I have written and published six books and a few ebooks of my own and established a publishing company that has published six books plus several ebooks for other writers.

After consistently producing and marketing quality books worldwide I decided to share these proven methods in a new book covering every step from idea through book creation to worldwide sales. That book is Self Publishing: Writing A Book and Publishing Books and Ebooks For Yourself and Others.

9 comments:

Goddess Fish Promotions said...

Thank you for hosting

Bill Benitez said...

Thanks for hosting my self publishing book. I hope your readers will comment or ask questions.

Bill

Rita said...

Sounds like self publishing is the way to go.

Kit3247(at)aol(dot)com

Melinda Campbell said...

Thanks for sharing this. I'll be checking it out!

cloud.weaver.girl AT gmail DOT com

Bill Benitez said...

After six books of my own and assisting several other writers to publish, I am an avid supporter of self publishing. Thanks for your comments.

Bill

Natasha D said...

Great post!
Thanks for the chance to win and Happy Holidays!
natasha_donohoo_8 at hotmail dot com

Mary Preston said...

I must say I love my big old desktop computer best of all.

marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Catherine Lee said...

Bill...I'm suprised that you even use a PC rather than a Mac. A lot of people in publishing I know must use MACs and PCs.

I see that you were born and reared in Tampa. I went to USF for Library school. I was back just recently (in October) and it has changed SOOOO much!
catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

Bill Benitez said...

Catherine, I've never used a MAC for any of my work but I know they are excellent computers. I am an IT professional on Windows and manage to do even my graphics work with my PC.

My sister was in the first USF graduating class and is now a retired teacher in Tampa. I have not been back in about 4 years and it had changed a lot even then.

Thanks for your comment.

Bill