This is a presentation outline I did for the Gonzales Writers’ Group in Gonzales, TX on October 1, 2015.
KINDLE PUBLISHING FOR NEWBIES
Not Dummies, just Newbies
I. Get Ready…
A. Go to the source: In the amazon.com Kindle bookstore, download for free (except shipping and handling – usually about $1) “Building Your Book for Kindle”.
B. Either print out and highlight or make your own notes or keep up on your Kindle while working to set up manuscript.
C. Use Word (caution about legality) or one of the programs mentioned in the book for the easiest set up of the manuscript.
1. Ariel font considered best for Kindle by other authors.
2. Don’t use headers and footers – they won’t show up on Kindle.
3. Follow the book for details on setting up the “front matter” – title page, copyright page, dedication, etc.
D. Write, rewrite, and probably rewrite again.
E. Edit, edit, edit!
1. Spellcheck – you’ll have to look for words that are spelled correctly but are the wrong word. You know, the ones that sound the same but aren’t spelled the same?
2. Proofread. Fix punctuation, grammar, and overly used words. Read it out loud for extra effectiveness.
3. Have someone who’s not known for flattery proofread your book and offer suggestions. Accept or refuse suggestions.
F. Save the manuscript as one file on your desktop, as “Web Page, Filtered”. This will convert it to HTML.
II. Get Set…
A. Go to https.//kdp.amazon.com and sign in. Either use your amazon.com password or set up an account if you don’t have an amazon.com account already. (Though if you downloaded their book, you should…) Minors (considered as such per their state of residence laws) will need their parent to set up an account.
B. It should take you directly to the bookshelf page. If not, use the tab for it.
C. Start with “Enter your new book title”. Follow the steps.
1. Cover – you can upload your own per their requirements and guidelines, or use the Cover Creator, which is a selection of pictures and photos in the public domain and can be used for free.
2. Upload the manuscript file per their instructions.
3. Use the Kindle Preview feature to make sure your product looks like you wanted it to. If it doesn’t, follow the steps given to make changes.
4. Set pricing and rights. You must have a bank account for the direct deposit of royalties, or you can get a wire transfer or a check. (Woo-hoo!!) Think carefully about rights. Don’t want to lose anything that might make you a fortune… Note: Selling through Kindle Select means you can’t sell the ebook through anybody else.
5. After setting price and rights, choose either ‘Save as Draft’ or ‘Save and Publish’.
III. Go, Go, Go!
A. Books will be ready for sale in Kindle bookstore in 12 hours if it is in English and within two days for all other languages.
B. You cannot edit it for about 24 – 72 hours if it has reached this point. Make changes first!
C. If you make changes later, or change book details like pricing, description, title, royalties percentage, etc., go to your Bookshelf tab and use the “Actions” drop down menu next to the particular product. Important: after making changes, click “Save and Continue”, THEN “Save and Publish”.
D. Set up your author’s profile on “Author Central”. If you can’t think of anything interesting about yourself, ask someone who likes you.
E. Follow the advice on the ‘Promotion and Merchandising’ tab on the left. If you can’t afford an advertising agency, you’ll have to learn to self-promote.
F. Lots of books are available for a range of prices offering tips for making money with Kindle.
G. If your hopes and dreams come true, and your baby sells, your royalties will show up in 60 days. However, be aware some lowlifes may purchase it, read it and return it, and Kindle will take the money back if it is returned in 7 days. Important: Read “Where is My Money?” under the “Getting Paid” link on the left.
H. Because you might actually get paid royalties, the “Tax Information” link absolutely must be studied. Kindle must validate your tax identification before you are allowed to publish. Sorry, guess that should have come first…
I. If you want to know how you are doing with your sales because you can’t wait for the royalty check, go to the ‘Reports’ tab at the top of the page. You can download a spreadsheet with lots of interesting information, or just look at some graphs showing sales.
J. Under the ‘Community’ tab is the forum for everyone on Kindle. Plenty of interesting information there.