- How much of a budget do you have to work with for publishing your book?
- How tech-savvy are you?
- Do you prefer to do things yourself or hire someone else to do it?
- How will your location (i.e. country) impact your self-publishing options?
- Are you keen to learn or do you prefer to invest a little money for a hassle-free experience?
Which Book Formats Are Most Important?
The formats I typically recommend at the absolute bare minimum are:
Of course there's a lot to know about creating and publishing each of these individual formats, so I will get started on covering what you need to know to make your best decisions. For detailed instructions about how to self-publish on each of these platforms, you will need to read and research as well as YouTube some tutorials, but it's fairly easy to find those things these days. Free education ;).
Where to Self-Publish Your Ebook for Free
The problem with only having one single format of your eBook is that the number of readers you can reach may be limited. That is not good for new or unknown authors, so if you're just starting out, try to cast your net pretty wide.
Smashwords and KDP are two excellent ways of getting your eBook out and distributed to as many different eBook stores and devices as possible. By using KDP you can maintain direct control over your Kindle eBook and make changes as needed, and Smashwords will distribute to all other major eBook retailers including but not limited to Kobo, iBooks, and Nook.
Best of all? Formatting is fairly simple and easy to learn for both of these platforms, although it will require some reading, studying, and maybe a bit of troubleshooting.
Ready to get started? Download the Smashwords Style Guide for free, and then check out this casual tutorial on how to format your Kindle eBook in Word.
Where to Self-Publish Your Audiobook for Free
Well, audiobooks typically reach a completely unique audience, more unique than paperback fans, so it's important to at least try to get your book recorded and released as an audiobook. You can do this somewhat easily through ACX, Audiobook Creation Exchange, an Amazon company.
If you want to record your own audiobook narration, you can learn how to do so fairly easily through the ACX forums and YouTube and purchase a decent microphone for about $70 on Amazon.
If you prefer to hire someone else to do this for you, ACX also has you covered. Many narrators will work for a share of royalties as opposed to up-front payment, making the entire process easy and hassle-free for you.
Where to Self-Publish Your Paperback for Free
You will need to pay attention to the size settings for your pages and the page count once you format it for print. Your page count will help you figure out the width of your book's spine for the cover.
During each step, CreateSpace has helpful answers along the way. Just mouse over the question mark next to any step for further instructions and information. Of course you will need to do some more skill development if you've never done any of this before, but practice is what makes you good at something =). Because you're self-published, you can always go back and make changes and updates to your book anytime you want to.
So, those are the free DIY options... but you may remember me mentioning something earlier about making a monetary investment for a hassle-free experience. Read on to learn about IngramSpark.
Where to Self-Publish Everything Hassle-Free ($$ Required)
Click here to learn more about IngramSpark's pricing.
IngramSpark has a ton of free resources, information guides, and tutorials to help you along your way, as does CreateSpace and KDP. Even if you use IngramSpark, you don't have to limit yourself to only them. For example, you may choose to publish your Kindle ebook through KDP to take advantage of the 70% royalty rate. That's just working smarter ;).
Thanks so much for reading, and I hope you found this post useful! Be sure to check back next week for more informative blog posts =).