One of the comments left on a recent post (Kindle Thoughts – A Writer’s Perspective) was from Amanda Evans. Amanda has been very helpful to me over the last year or so and she has a website called Ghostwriting Uncovered. Part of her comment was a query regarding publishing your ebook on Kindle. Sounds like a fine idea to me, so let’s get into it.
Step Number One: Write a book.
Okay perhaps a bit tongue in cheek snarky, but truly it is the starting point for this venture. Short books, long books, novels, how-tos, short or flash story compilations are all fair game.
You publish your book through Amazon’s Digital Text Platform site. The very first and most important step in this process is to download the .pdf Amazon DTP Quickstart Guide Fantastic document, really. Step by step and so easy a caveman um, writer could do it. You need to have an account at Amazon, but this is free and takes just a few minutes to register.
After you create all of your account information at the DTP site, you will see an Add New button at the top of the page.
Clicking this button will bring up a screen that will show the four steps you need to complete to publish. Each will have a red X until completed, then they will change to a green check mark.
Step one is to enter the product details. Don’t skimp on this section. Here you add things such as the title and product description. The more robust your description, the greater chance folks have of finding your work. Take the time to do it right. Good descriptions, keywords and categories make all of the difference. Be as complete as possible. This is also the section where you get to upload the cover image. Don’t be fooled – people DO judge a book by its cover so make certain you use an image that is worthy of your book. Oh, and use an image for which you own the rights, okay?
Next, You need to confirm content rights. A couple of bullet checks and you’re done with this section, assuming you have the rights to what you want to publish. If you don’t have the right, bad on you. Stop right now and go somewhere else.
Moving on to the upload of your book. The folks at Amazon are very clear on this crucial aspect. HTML works best. MS Word is a good second option, but if you try and upload a .pdf file you may be sorely disappointed with the results. Fortunately if you are using MS Word or Open Office you can save your file as a HTML file. Once you do that, you’re golden. Follow the easy steps in step three and upload your file.
Step four seems easy enough. Just enter the suggested Retail Price for your ebook. Except pricing isn’t really that easy as my previous post about Kindle indicates. If you are a new author, you need to make the unfortunate decision about how much money you don’t want to make on your book. Price it too high and folks may flock to it by the 1′s. My suggestion? There is a whole genre, if you will, about 99 cent books. It is a popular tag and folks will scoop these up all day long.
Once you’ve completed all of the steps click the “Publish” button and wait 24-48 hours to see it show up. be sure and let the world know by any means available to you. As well, encourage reviews to help bolster your book’s standing in the Kindle community
Once you start this journey, Amazon has tons of support forums and FAQs. Most any question you may have is likely to be answered in any of those places.
For myself, the experience has been painless, if not pleasant. Absolutely recommended.
If you publish over at Kindle, I’d be interested in hearing about your experience. I’d also be happy to purchase and write a review.