Saturday, July 30, 2011

Publishing an eBook

During my travels around cyberspace, I came across a three-part series on publishing your own eBook. The info and advice comes from a journalist, Robert Niles.

In Part one, A journalist's guide to eBook publishing - part one, he talks about choosing the subject of your book and gathering information.

In Part two, A journalist's guide to eBook publishing - part two, he gets into formatting, providing what he calls “the cheapstake's method to eBook publishing.” Here he covers buying an ISBN and creating or paying for a cover design. Then he gets down to the nitty-gritty of things like using HTML and XML, naming your files, coding problems, and the copyright page. He ends with advice and notes on editing your HTML code.

In Part three, A journalist's guide to eBook publishing - part three, Niles focuses on compiling all your information into eBook format. He offers tips on what you need to know to be accepted by Amazon and Barnes and Noble. He links to the Big Three’s direct publishing programs, lists the steps in Mobipocket Creator, and talks about uploading to iTunes Producer.

Then he leaves the promotion of your book up to you, but he’ll get you to that point. It seems like things are constantly changing, but for now, this is a pretty good explanation of what you have to do to self-publish your own eBook.

29 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing these links! I'm headed right over to check it out!

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  2. Hi good for you, I gave in and found someone to do this. Not entirely satisfactory. Everything so new.

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  3. Hi Carole Anne. I'd love to hear more about your experience. Not only is everything new, it's constantly changing!

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  4. This looks great, Helen! I have a pal of 91 who self-published a book a few years back (with my encouragement and whatever help I could give him). He wants to e-pub it now so I will send him on this information. I am constantly thrilled with his enthusiasm to learn more and more while I want to lie in a hammock and read!

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  5. Hm... As of right now, only Apple, Sony and BordersUS (if they still exist) require an ISBN for ebooks. The heavy hitters - Amazon and Barnes and Noble - don't. He's directing people to buy their own ISBN but it's a waste of money. I get a free one from SmashWords, who then distribute to Apple and Sony for me.

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  6. Part two is probably the biggest challenge for people!

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  7. Oh golly gosh...not sure I will ever have the patience or discipline to do this myself...

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  8. These look like great links! Thank you :)

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  9. I'm asked so often how to publish e-books and printed books (Createspace) that I've been working on a quick guide that I'll publish in the next few days. This sounds like a good resource and I'll add a link to this. There are so many manuscripts sitting on shelves, I hope more writers will take the plunge and get their work out there.
    Ann

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  10. I took a look at the links and this sounds quite complicated. You can upload a book in Word format on Smashwords.com and I believe you need to convert to a PDF file for Kindle. I'm not sure of the reasoning behind making an html file. Any thoughts?

    Ann

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  11. I hired Diane Wolfe to format my book so I could publish on Smashwords. She was fabulous to work with and the process didn't take long at all.
    Karen

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  12. I've published two books and a short story via Kindle Direct and Smashwords, and found both to be relatively simple (I also pubbed the books in paperback with Createspace). As a caveat, I must add that I spent almost 30 years as a software engineer before I started writing for publication.

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  13. Ann, Kindle used to be html but now you don't even need a PDF. They take .doc and .rtf too! I agree with you, using Word is a simple matter of telling it to create even html (which I still use) from a .doc. Maybe he does the extra twists and turns because he uses Mac? I don't know, but if I'd read his instructions first, I never would have attempted it!

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  14. Your links looks helpful. Some of the comments here are also very helpful. Good post, Ginger, for those who want to try self-publishing.
    Ann Best, Author of In the Mirror, A Memoir of Shattered Secrets

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  15. Thanks Laura.

    I'm glad to hear you're doing that Ann. Let me know when you post it so I can link to it.

    Diane knows what she's doing, doesn't she, Karen!

    Gayle, you say stuff like that and you're gonna have a loooot of friends.

    Thanks Ann. Let us know if you give it a try.

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  16. Thanks for the link. Just what I'm looking for.

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  17. Thanks, Helen. I guess I just wasted two ISBN numbers on ebooks I placed on Kindle. :)

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  18. Thanks for the links. I'll check them out. I'm all for the cheapstake's method!

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  19. Thanks for the links on this very timely information. :)

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  20. If anyone needs help learning to create, format, publish, market, or sell your e-book, I just completed an e-book about e-books called The E-Book Handbook:
    http://www.dojoklo.com/Full_Stop/The_E-Book_Handbook.htm

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  21. Hi Helen .. interesting links and information in the post - also from the comments .. thanks - Hilary

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  22. Thanks for the helpful links, Helen! I'm getting ready to epub, myself.

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  23. Mr. Niles quits at the promotion element? I don't understand ... that's the easiest thing, right?

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  24. Publishing my own e-book is probably what I will do in the end (can't imagine that any publisher will take it). Currently it appears to be some hazzle for non-US writers to publish through amazon.com, but I hope this will be sorted out before my so-called novel is finished >:)

    Cold As Heaven

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  25. Helen, I've put my publishing guide on Kindle. It has an overview of the different publishing options and details on how to format for Createspace and Kindle along with a few marketing tips. It's called a Quick Guide Through the Publishing Maze. I think many writers are discouraged from taking the leap into publishing and it's fairly easy, especially with the Createspace wizard.
    Ann Summerville

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  26. More and more people are saying that it's getting easier to self publish. We certainly live in interesting times!

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  27. I'm interested in Part 1. Will head over to have a read.

    Chemical Fusion

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  28. It took me awhile to get over here but I'm glad I did. Learning what to do in what order to write an eBook is just what I've been looking for. Thank you so much!

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