Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Secrets to Indie Publishing. Step #5 Choosing an Ebook Service

Step #5

Keep revising and have a few readers give your manuscript a quick read.  Again, have them keep a notebook handy to write down their thoughts and feelings. (And any grammar edits you and your editor missed. They are there. I promise you.)

Now, check out e-publishing services.

A good one to look at is Smashwords.com and it's free to set up. It takes your manuscript and cover and creates all the different forms e-readers use, including formats for the Nook and Kindle. (They are having some problems with Amazon right now and that won't be fixed until October, 2011) It also distributes your ebook for you. Smashwords takes a cut, 15%, and the site it goes to takes a cut, and you still end up with at least 60%.

It is pretty easy to publish for the Kindle without Smashwords by going to kdp.amazon.com (And if you price your book for between $2.99-9.99, you keep 70%.) 

It's not so easy to publish for the Nook. It's crazy confusing. Use Smashwords for sure. You also want your book available on sites like Kobe and Sony and the others Smashwords distributes to.

Remember, you are only researching now. You still need a cover. That is why Createspace is so important.

Smashwords can't convert your manuscript into all the different formats without you first formatting it in the way they tell you to. 

I know that sounds confusing, but they actually have a free e-book with directions that walk you through the process.

I read through the book and started to put a copy of my "print" manuscript into the form they wanted. Then I found out Smashwords keeps a list of people who take your book and format it for you for super cheap.

You just request the list from Smashwords and then pick the person that floats your boat. I picked a fabulous formatter who guaranteed her work and it only cost me 25 bucks. Money well spent. My manuscript got included in the premium catalogue on the first try. (You want to be included in the premium catalogue)

Going too slow for you? Take a breath. There is so much to learn, take your time. Remember, I made all the mistakes so you won't have to.

Happy researching and editing until next Tuesday.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Indie Publishing Secrets Revealed. Step 4-Choosing a Print Publishing Service

First off, let me say that I've had a lot of requests for a deeper look into steps #1-3. I am working on a few posts to address those things and will post them soon. I will start posting regularly on Tues for this thread on Indie Publishing. See ya on Tuesdays.

Step #4
Carefully consider the revisions your editor suggests and make those changes, highlighting them and letting your editor make sure your changes are done well.

While doing this, research what print publishing service you'd like to use. I suggest using a free service like, Createspace or Lulu. I used Createspace and will tailor my comments to make using it even easier. I researched Lulu, signed up and looked around, clicking every button to see what they had to offer, comparing it to Createspace and I felt Createspace was the better choice for me. Do the same. Take the time to explore a bit.

  • Look at the ability to get a portable ISBN-the numbers attached to the bar codes on everything you buy-that way you aren't locked into using the service as your distributor later.
  • Does the service have a cover-creator that "makes" your cover to your specifications?
  • Does the service have live help?
  • Does it distribute to Barnes and Noble.com and Amazon.com?
I will cover why these things are important in subsequent posts.
While Createspace is all about PRINT books, I will also be covering EBOOKS.

Happy researching and revising. See ya on Tues.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Indie Publishing Secrets Revealed

Ever wondered if you could publish a book on your own? On this blog, I am starting a series going through the steps to do just that.

First things first. Steps 1-3

Step number one-finish your manuscript. (seems obvious, doesn't it?)

Step two-Once finished, and hopefully you used a critique group to help you along the way, give it out to about 10 beta-readers (these are people who love to read and will be honest with you-not family members).
Ask them to have a notebook or paper handy while they read to jot down things that come to their minds like: I'm losing interest here, I totally don't understand this, why would this happen, this doesn't sound like the character I know, I love this part, and any grammar problems they stumble across. Once they've finished, interview them and take notes.

Step three, after you've gotten all 10 beta-readers' feedback and have made the changes that need to be made, have your work edited by an editor. Pick someone you like and who fits your style of writing. There's nothing worse than an editor messing with your character's voice if it's just fine. It should be a content and grammar edit. Do not skip this step!

Come back next week for step four.

Happy writing

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Win a free copy of Watched

Jump over to cindymhogan.blogspot.com for the details.

The contest is in a post from May 5th. Good Luck!

Win a copy of this book before the Launch on June 6th.