My Little Pair of Self-Pubbing Tips

So I’ve been working on self-publishing for about a year and a half. I’ve also got a book on spec at a traditional publisher, so I’m not leaving that behind. Just…romance is a good genre to self-pub. Anyway, lately I’ve had quite a few people ask me the difference between putting a book up on Kindle and actually formatting it for Createspace (Amazon’s self-publishing arm for paperbacks.) (A good option for hardbacks is, but that’s a different post.) It’s a valid question. They are NOT the same.

Okay, first, you get your book cover design the right size according to the Kindle Direct Publishing guidelines. Have your designer do that. Or do it yourself. It’s not impossible, just a little tricky. THEN uploading is quite swift and easy. Just follow the directions step by step on KDP. You basically take your Word document, convert it to HTML, make sure all the stuff looks right in their viewer, upload the cover, and POP. You’re done. They give you a 12-24 hour waiting period, and then it’s available on Amazon. com under the author’s name and the name of the book.

Easy peasy lemon cheesy.

Formatting for paperback is a different animal. Createspace is really user friendly, but there are a lot more steps involved–IF you want the book to look professional. If you don’t care, it’s way easy. But if you DO care, then I recommend buying a good little e-book by a girl named Heather Justesen. It’s called POD Like a Pro. The ladies who worked with me on the Ripple Effect Romance Series gave me that tip.

It’s a learning curve, and the first time I did it, it took me about six hours (!), and the second time and third time were also…quite a few hours. But it does get slightly easier. Maybe I just forget stuff in between (which is, okay, totally the reason. I think I lost 20% of my brain with each baby. And I have 5 kids.) But you end up with a great finished product. You can use the same cover as you used for your Kindle version.

Okay, the gist is: KDP=easy. Do it. CreateSpace=takes more time. Do it anyway. Because you can.