(and it’s completely free!)
IMPORTANT: I DO NOT PROVIDE SERVICES OF PUTTING YOUR E-BOOK TO KDP SITE NOR I KNOW ANYONE WHO DOES IT.
Yes, of course I know that I’ve already written a blog post on how to publish an electronic book on iBooks in any language, but here I will focus only on self-publishing for Amazon and show you how to publish your book (both in electronic and paper form!) and give you all possible details when it comes to promoting (and even translating) your book!
First of all, this article is very similar to the one where I explain how to publish an e-book on Serbian (or any other) language for iTunes because these topics are similar, but this post is for those of you who are interested primarily to publish books on Amazon. The reason why I wrote the post on how to publish on iBooks first is that Amazon has limitations when it comes to languages in which they publish. This is because characters from some languages are not compatible with their Kindle e-reader and that’s why you should first check the language that they support and then decide in which language you want to publish. As you can notice, the list is very short so if you are writing (or translating) your book in some language that is not on the list, go and self-publish for iBooks. However, considering the fact that Amazon is one of the most popular publishing houses in the world and you can self-publsih your book in 5 minutes (or less!), you should definitely consider publishing on Amazon too.
Before I start, it would be nice to know why would anyone self-publish their e-book in the first place. Here’s my list:
- It’s completely free to publish your e-book
- Your earinings are 70% from each book you sell (which is much better than paper version)
- You set the price of your book
- Your book is available anywhere in the world at any time (just have a look at this inspiring video)
- You can publish your book (ok, after initial preparation) in just a few minutes and YOU (and you only) decide on this (so there are no publishes that can turn down your text)
- E-book is a great way to check out your reading audience before you publish a paper-cover book (although you can get great feedback from your beta readers too)
- Your e-book can be online forever (even if you sell just one book a year it’s still a perfect passive income)
- Reading on an e-reader is (in my humble opinion) much better, easier, cheaper and healthier for your eyes than a regular book – and in my post on e-readers you can find all the advantages of e-reading
Now that all this is clear, there are 3 things that are crucial in the very PREPARATION before publishing (not just for Amazon):
1. First thing is (I hope) obvious. Your book should be written. I know it may sound silly, but your book needs to be ready, finished, the end, all characters (more or less) in one place. The good news is that you can publish any kind of text: science, illustration, short stories; anything. Than you can give it to an editor and think about submitting your work to beta readers (these two steps are optional of course).
2. After that, you should set up some kind of account where you will receive your money. PayPal is an obvious choice, but if you have no option to receive money through PayPal (like in Serbia) consider opening an account with Payoneer.
3. Once you’re done with all this, you should create a description for your book along with the book cover. These 2 things SELL your e-book. Similar as in bookstore, reader sees an interesting book cover, reads the description and really, really wants to buy your book. Remember that the book cover is the first thing your potential buyer will see; you can create one yourself or invest in your cover and pay a professional designer to make you one. As for the description, you know the best what your book is about, but you can ask someone for help (other people’s opinion can make you realise things you haven’t maybe considered). Make the description the best you can as this is the thing that will definitely seal the deal of selling your book to a potential reader (full post on book cover can be found here).
4. If you want to consider translating your book into another language (again, great passive income out of just one product), you should choose in which language you want to translate your book to. My worm recommendations are (according to the statistics of global report on e-books): 1) English 2) Spanish 3) German or any Scandinavian language (there is a large increase in their e-books market). In general, I know that this may seem like a big investment, but whatever happens, you will always have your text translated in another language. Of course, it is of utmost importance to find a good translator because you want your text to sound good in a foreign language.
Publishing your book on AMAZON
When you’re finished with all this (or in the process), you can create your account on Amazon where you will sell your books. From now on you are an independent writer who self-publish his or hers e-book for Kindle Direct Publishing (for those of you who don’t know – Kindle e-reader is Amazon’s product) and KDP (I quote) promises: Independently publish with Kindle Direct Publishing to reach millions of readers. I recommend that you look at a cute video at the beginning that explains how easy it is to publish through Amazon (ie KDP).
Once you create an account, you need to format your text which is (I assume) written in Word. Formatting Word text is done very easily (and you don’t even have to do it if you are not a perfectionist); you can find out how to do it on any tutorial on YouTube. You can also hire a freelancer to do all the dirty job for you and depending on the type of your book, your text will be formatted differently, and that’s why I formatted my text (for the purpose of short stories and novels – that is, an ordinary text) using the following tutorial (I personally use Mac, but at the beginning there’s a link for PC users too) :
- You can choose between two marketing options: to offer your book for free or to sell it at a reduced rate for a certain period of time. Personally I am not a big fan of giving something for free that you worked hard on (said the writer of these blog posts) and on various forums I saw that authors are not satisfied with this kind of promotion, but the choice is entirely up to you.
- You also have the option to pay Amazon to market your book for you – you specify what type of advertising you want and they put it on some visible place on their site (if you have Facebook page, you’ll realize that this is something similar to boosting posts). Of course, you have the freedom to shamelessly promote your book in all other possible ways: through social media, with paid advertising, leaving the link below my text, at literary gatherings etc (I expect an invitation).
- And maybe the best of all, you can become an Amazon Affiliate partner and join their affiliate program and by advertising your book, earn if someone buys ANYTHING on Amazon (if that came through the link you posted) – so you earn profit from book sale along with percentage if someone buys anything on Amazon. If you are interested in this, more about Affliate marketing can be found in this text.