Several days ago, I posted on Facebook that my white Macbook, a computer I bought in 2009 for college, is starting to show signs that it is at the end of its life. The fans run constantly (even after a warehouse maintenance by Apple last year), the processor simply isn’t strong enough for modern incarnations of the programs I use (like Adobe Suite), and since the product line itself has been discontinued, I run the risk of having no more support for this model in a couple more years.
I went to the Apple website and looked at my options. Though the basic models of the Macbook Pro start at around $2,000, I’ve been with Apple long enough to know that it’s worth buying all the extra flash, memory, and RAM that you can from the start, because these computers last, and you never know what you’re going to be using your computer for down the line.
I decided I was going to max what I could on the 13″ model, because I plan to keep expanding my book design service Country Mouse Design as my skills continue to improve. Now that I am nearly fluent in InDesign, my next goals are to learn how to make book trailers, iPhone book apps, and book covers (of the professional grade). My little white can’t handle the processing power required by Adobe’s CS6 generation, and so it’s hard to keep improving without a better computer.
In any case, I voiced my budgeting woes on Facebook, because, well, Facebook. It’s possible I’ll be going to Canada in the next couple of years to continue my schooling, and prior student loans and an international move loom heavily over my head.
The Power of Community
Unless you’ve seen the bright blue badge in my sidebar, you might not know that when I am not blogging here, I am an admin in the community Fiction Writers Group. I’ve made it one of my personal missions to make this group one of the best on the web, and I do as much I can there to see that dream realized.
I have overseen several projects for the group, including the acquisitions, editing, formatting, and design of our newest anthology Writers’ Anarchy III: Heroes & Villains, and assist members daily by answering questions, explaining software and finding articles that help indie authors develop their skills and professional attitude.
I love doing what I do there. It’s a tight-knit community, with some truly wonderful people. Case in point is the reason I’m writing this blog post at all:
When I woke up this morning, I found out about an Indie GoGo campaign started by my fellow members. The campaign title? “Mac Book for Tokyo (my name on Facebook)”. Several members had come together in private to discuss, and ultimate move forward with, a campaign to help me fund my new computer.
I have been in a profound state of shock ever since.
This community means so much to me. Editing the anthologies, putting together the formatting, and educating those who have questions when I have the knowledge are all small things for me, because I desire nothing else than to see each and every one of us succeed in our wishes as writers.
Together, this group works almost like a real writers association, taking care of our own. I just never imagined that the kindness of the group would then turn back to me.
With the new computer, I will be able to keep up my volunteer efforts in the group, and be more efficient than ever with it. Also, before anyone asks why a MacBook, it’s because this is the computer that the grad school I am applying for in Canada uses, as well as the book industry at large.
However! While I am beyond touched, beyond comprehending how I could have been offered this wonderful goodwill, I AM OFFERING A PERK for those who donate $100. A high amount, I know, but here it is:
If you donate $100, I’ll take it as a payment for a future book layout. I will format (for print) ANY book of yours to your OWN specifications. Old or new, anthology, future release or from the crypt, I’ll get it formatted and ready for release or re-release in as timely a manner as I can manage. If you don’t have a novel but you’ve got lots of short stories, I’ll format up to 90,000 words instead.
You can see samples of my interior work at: http://countrymousedesign.com/samples.html
Even if this campaign only raises $1, I will be happy. Any funds raised here will go straight to the purchase of my new laptop. The extra $500 is for Indie GoGo & Paypal’s fees. Even if I don’t reach the goal, I can subtract from what I would have needed to spend, and that’s a huge help to me.
If any of my readers out here need some low-cost, but professional formatting, these perks apply to you as well!