Self-publishing an eBook these days is not rocket science. You just need a little guidance that will point you in the right direction and blogs like this that share what other authors do, can help. When I finished my first manuscript, I researched like crazy to find out what I needed to do next. Lots of guides can be found on the internet, some helped, some just confused me more. But eventually, step by step, I was able to release my first eBook, In Loving You, through Amazon, Google Play Store, Scribd, Lulu, Smashwords and Payhip.
I'm sharing my experience with newbie authors like me, who are making their first big step into the world of Indie Authors and Self-Publishing.
So, you have your manuscript and you're ready to share it with the world. Congratulations! I know you're all excited about it just as I was. Before we start, remember that as a Self Published Author, you will be responsible for your books all the way, from conception to marketing. Think of your readers always. There are hundreds of poorly edited and commercialized books online. Let yours stand out from the rest by being something of value. They're your works of art but they're also products - and your customer are your readers. Don't forget them.
PROOFREADING and EDITING
Find a fresh pair of eyes to edit and proofread your manuscript. You may think it's just perfect since you've spent countless hours reading through it, correcting and improving your writing. But it's better to get the point of view of someone unbiased. The ideal move is to get a professional editor and proofreader... but if you don't want to spend for one, approach friends who love to read and get their opinions. They can criticize your work and test it, so to speak. Working so closely with the manuscript can numb your brain and make you miss areas of improvement.
Poor grammar, misspelled words and sentences that don't "sound" right - can hurt your book. The topic might be innovative and interesting but if it's not "readable", your readers will not go beyond sampling your work. I know cause I love to read... and I only spend my time with books that I enjoy reading.
The great part about being a self pub is that you have creative liberty. You can make it ok, great or awesome - it's up to you. Of course, your choices have consequences and you must be prepared for those too.
Your book cover is a critical element to your book's success... it's the first thing buyers see. Just imagine the number of ebooks available online... and here you are an unknown writer. Why would readers even think of buying your books? Again, look at your book from a reader's point of view. The cover is their first encounter with your book. Make sure it catches their attention.
If you're a Photoshop whiz kid, you're at an advantage. You can design your cover yourself. Otherwise, hire designers to do the cover for you. It's worth the investment.
Conceptualize the look of your eBook cover. It should give the reader an idea of what the book is about. Choose the design carefully. Make sure the images you use are royalty-free.
You can click HERE for FREE high resolution royalty-free photos you can use for your book cover.
Ask for revisions if you're not satisfied with the cover. Many designers offer up to 3 revisions.
If you really insist on being creative and doing it yourself, the easiest way to make beautiful covers is through Microsoft PowerPoint. You can download Free and beautiful fonts, and it's easy to move things around unlike Photoshop.
Save the PowerPoint slide of your cover as JPEG or PNG. Then increase the size so it get's accepted on all publishing platforms. You can use Paint to do this or any of your image editors. The resolution of PowerPoint images are at 96 dpi (pixels). You want it to be 300 dpi. To increase pixels, I recommend downloading GIMP which is the free alternative to Photoshop.
Ok! When you're done with writing the content and you have a beautiful Cover... Now what?
To be continued....
For professional and affordable support, check out The Book Khaleesi.
Got any tips of your own? Share them! :)