If you can’t tell, formatting has been on my mind a lot, lately. See, I used to format everything myself. By hand. It was a tedious, painstaking process that soured even the brightest of my moods. Eventually, I came to the conclusion that some things just aren’t worth it — just because I can do something on my own doesn’t necessarily mean that I should. Needless to say, I began a pursuit to find the best, most cost-effective formatting software.
A friend of mine (Chessa Andersson, author of Bittersweet Confessions) was the one who recommended Reedsy to me. If you’ve been around for a while, you’ll have likely seen the telltale Reedsy branding on part of the Dark Paths series!
I suppose I’m getting ahead of myself.
What is Reedsy?
Reedsy is an all-in-one website that offers many services, including the ability to format your manuscript yourself. You can also hire editors, market your book, hire designers, web designers, etc.
For the sake of this blog, we’re only going to be covering the formatting process!
How Does It Work?
It’s actually quite simple. All you have to do is make an account, and then upload your manuscript to Reedsy.
Reedsy automatically generates your front matter and your back-matter. For the most part, these pages are “plug and play.” Many even have the text fields available to you, so you only need to put in the necessary information. You can also drag and drop chapters along the sidebar. There are a few rudimentary tools as well — you can search your manuscript, track your changes, use spellcheck, insert images, notes, scene break, etc.
You can even write your book in Reedsy itself. They provide tools such as “Goals and Insights” which allows you to set writing goals, and even track your progress.
You can also choose to share your book by generating a link. You can choose to share only a few chapters or the whole book. And, you can also set an expiration date to the link! What fun!
Reedsy offers very little in the ways of customization with only three styles to choose from and the barer than bare-bones add-ons: drop-caps, hiding chapter numbers (small-caps to come later). You can download your book in both digital format (ePub and Mobi), and in print (PDF) in various margin sizes.
Reedsy will email you your files when they are ready to be downloaded.
What’s The Price Tag?
The best part? It’s free.
There are a few trade-offs, to be sure. For starters, Reedsy will include an imprint on your text that says it was formatted with Reedsy. Then, of course, there are the limited formatting options and the basic array of tools.
Are There Any Other Drawbacks?
Beyond the barebones approach to this program, it’s also all online. While this might be a selling point to some, I have to admit that when I was using this program to write a book, I was often more frustrated than I was pleased. For starters, the Reedsy editor often decided that it was going to be stuck “on load” for upwards of fifteen minutes before I got frustrated and did something else. It, in my opinion, is not worth being used as a writing app.
Is It Worth It?
If you’re someone who is rather straight to the point, no-frills, Reedsy might be the perfect formatting approach for you. It cannot get more intuitive, nor more simple. However, if you’re someone who has been daydreaming about the fonts you’ll use, or the way you want your headers and footers formatted, Reedsy might not be the plan for you.
I would love to know your thoughts and feelings on Reedsy. Have you used it? What was your experience? If you haven’t, after reading this blog are you now curious? Feel free to comment below!
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