Your Step-by-Step Guide to Self-Publishing an eBook

Gone are the days of sending in manuscripts to an obscene number of publishers, only to be rejected time and time again. Did you know that J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected 12 times before she was able to find a publisher? Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series was rejected 14 times and Stephen King’s Carrie was rejected 30 times. All that to say, even the greats have struggled with capturing the attention of a publisher.

Nowadays, we are lucky to have several different options for self-publishing, and it’s pretty easy to do.

Where to publish
There are an almost infinite number of self-publishing sites out there. Some of the most popular ones include Kindle Direct Publishing, Rakuten Kobo Publishing, and Barnes and Noble, but do a quick Google search and you’ll find tons of others that you can explore to see if they offer any interesting features.

Write the thing
You’re not going to get very far in publishing a book that hasn’t been written yet. So before you get too deep into your focus on publishing, write the book. Make sure you start with at least a rough outline before getting started on the actual content – it will help guide you as you write and keep you on track. Before moving forward with publishing, you’ll also want to make sure the content is fine-tuned and well-edited.

Learn the publishing specs
Whichever company you are planning to publish through will have their own specifications that you will have to follow when formatting your book. If you’re planning on self-publishing, you may want to find out which site you want to use before writing the book, and format to their specs to begin with, rather than having to backtrack.

Choose a format
There are three specific styles of eBooks you can publish. Reflowable books may adjust depending on the size of the screen or how it is opened. This is the style that is most frequently used for novels and other text-based books.

Alternatively, fixed-layout books maintain their exact, specific formatting no matter what. It’s a good option for books that have very particular formatting, multimedia, and illustrations. Finally, you can also format your book as a PDF, but this is not recommended.

Keyword up
You want people to find your book right? Of course, you do. To do that, you need to ensure that you attach the appropriate keywords to your book so that people can find it easily. Select a few highly relevant keywords that best describe your book. Make sure to include all of these words in the book description, and any time you are asked to include keywords or keyword phrases throughout the publishing process.

Follow the prompts
Each eBook publishing site is different, but none of them are rocket science. Follow the prompts and instructions that the website gives you to complete the publishing process. This will include uploading your book, setting the pricing, and may also include creating an author page or bio.

Don’t wait for people to find your book, take your book to them! Use social media, word of mouth, and promotions to get people talking about (and reading!) your creation.

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