How To Publish Your Book: Part 2
Updated: Feb 17
Updated November 3, 2021
Formatting the text of your book is only one small part of getting your book ready for publication. Now don’t get excited. I’m not going to explain how to “format” your book.
You have to be high to think I will be sitting here giving you step-by-step instructions when you can purchase Joel Friedlander’s the Design Templates and let that software do all the work for you. You can also use Atticus. This is by one of my favorite peeps, Dave Chesson. I use this and I love it.
However, this post will go over setting up your book on the different sales platforms. So, grab a big ass drink and clear your head.
Go to the KDP Select dashboard to begin uploading your book for sale as AN EBOOK.
The description section is one of the most vital steps. You need to craft this to get the attention of perspective readers. Find authors that you read on Amazon, and check out their descriptions. You should see a pattern of how to structure this. Bryan Cohen's book How To Write A Sizzling Synopsis will also help you with this. I used it and love it.
The next sections, Keywords and Categories, are two critical steps. These are what people will use to search for a book. Dave Chesson has some great information on keywords and how to use them.
Next, you’ll come to pricing. As a new unknown author, you need to price yourself so that you make a profit, but don’t scare prospective buyers away. However, you need to have $2.99 minimum to get the 70% royalty. I suggest listing your book at either $2.99 or $3.99. According to Amy Collins from New Shelves Books this is the sweet spot for pricing.
You will need to decide if you are posting your book as a pre-order or if you are ready to publish. If you are doing a book launch, you may want to consider putting your book in a pre-order status. List it for the price you are going to sell it for. Not an introductory price.
If you are going to offer your book for print, you will more than likely at some point list your books with Ingram Spark. So when you upload your print book on KDP, do not check expanded distribution. This will allow you to use your own ISBN if you have one. Which you will need for Ingram Spark. You can see my most recent post on this here. You will need to reformat your book to a PDF. This is where Atticus will save you so much time. You need to create a print book cover. I create my own, but you can by a pre-made cover or hire someone. You will need a blurb, and you can copy and paste the one you created for your ebook. I cover all of this in part one of this series.
1. You can use the EBOOK you uploaded on KDP for your print book. You will remove any pictures except for your author bio pic. Save it with another name and then save it again in a PDF format. (or use ATTICUS.)
2. You will want to update your book with new keywords from time to time. Remember to change this across all sales platforms, if you are wide.
3. Kindle Unlimited - you need to decide before you go any further if you are going to list your book in the KU library. You cannot list your book anywhere else for 90 days.
After you list your book in KDP, go to Author Central and set up your author page. DO NOT SKIP this part. This is free space on one of the largest search engines in the world. Here you will list a bio. Make sure it is not a boring bio. Use this space to get people interested in you as a person. Help them want to buy a book from an unknown author. Here you can also link your blog. I suggest you do this too. Every time you post a new blog post, it will show up here. (You can’t do this step until you list your book in KDP.)
Word of Caution: For Apple. I had more trouble with this than any other site. I wouldn’t list my book here without an aggregate if you held a gun to my head. At this moment, you are probably asking what an aggregate is. It is something like Smashwords or Draft2Digital. I use Draft2Digital and Smashwords. D2D requires an epub. If you then load that epub into Smashwords, you will save yourself a lot of headache. I cover aggregates and all of these platforms and more in this post here.
Bear in mind that you will need to upload all changes you make in your book, to all the platforms individually.
SIDE NOTE: After you list your book, sign into ACX, and claim your book(s) the minute they are published. There has been a lot of pirating of books and then making them into audio books. By claiming them even before you are ready to do this, will keep them from being claimed by a scammer. Don't skip this step.
Now is when the hard work actually begins. Marketing. This is a topic for another time.