E-Book Publishing – 5 steps you need to do it
A digital revolution has been in full effect, starting from the 1960s, until now. The whole world relies on the internet in one way or another, for one service or another, and most importantly, for connecting and communicating with one another. Stacks and stacks of file cabinets have been replaced with online digital storage, music and movie stores have been replaced with online streaming services, and social media has become the most effective marketing tool. Ever since the information age took over, many industries, if not all, have adopted digitisation. The book publishing industry is no exception. Books have also found a home in the digital world, as ebooks.
What is e-book publishing?
E-book publishing is the publishing of electronic or digital books online. An e-book, just like any other book, contains text and/or images. And just like books need a publishing house; a physical place with shelves they can be placed on and sold, so do e-books need a digital platform to be uploaded on, sold, read and even shared on.
How does it work?
Just like any other great thing, publishing a book is a process. There’s a beginning and an end of it. A process comprises of different stages that are crucial for every component of the book, making sure there’s no detail left unturned. From start to finish, a number of steps are to be taken to reach the goal; your e-book securing its place on the shelves of the internet. The following are the main steps to publishing your e-book:
To publish a book, you must write a book first, obviously. This can be a long and tedious, if not gruesome process. One reason would be because it actually is the basis or backbone of your whole project. Another reason would be the issue of creative burnout. Some days, you may be on a roll, and others you may lack the motivation, the drive, the energy to keep pushing. Not to mention, you could also get stuck, arriving at a dead end of your story, and having to take some time off to figure it out.
You have to have the story, the genre, the message, the chapters, etc, all figured and mapped out. Most especially for first time authors, that’s not easy to do at all. But, it’s doable. That’s why we have millions of books to read available, don’t we? That’s why more and more independent authors like you are on the rise today.
And so, with the whole world knowing or learning how to use a computer, you can use different desktop applications like MS Word, Pages, etc, to write and complete your manuscript.
Once your manuscript is completed, it’s of utmost importance that you get it edited. Editing (*link this to the blog about editing) is an absolute must when it comes to publishing your book. Whether you are a good writer or not, a separate pair of eyes is necessary to go through your manuscript and polish it to the highest standard. Different genres of books require different styles of delivery. The voice, the language and vocabulary, and the structure used all vary according to the genre. Editing services are a must, and are sought by every writer.
One may think that because the manuscript is in .docx or .pdf format, it is ready to be to be published online. No. There are different e-book platforms online, and each of them require certain standards and a certain format to welcome your e-book with open arms, and they do not compromise one bit. The main formats used worldwide include MOBI and EPUB. That being said, it’s important to know that after thorough edits have been done on your manuscript, the next step to take would be converting it into a file that e-readers are able to open and read. This ensures a great reading experience for all who read your book, regardless of the platform that’s being used.
This process is what is known as formatting (*link to blog about formatting here). Your e-book has to undergo this, so it can fit the required standards and be approved and accepted into the digital world. You want your readers to be able to access it and read it on any digital platform, and on any device; phone, computer, kindle, iPad, etc.
4: Cover Art Design:
Designing the cover for your book could be perhaps the most crucial component of your e-book. It may seem like the easiest thing to do, or just a simple addition to your whole project, but it actually could make or break all your hard work. When you are finally done with your project, and your book is successfully released onto the digital market, what will make it stand out from the millions of other books out there? What will make the potential buyer notice it? What will make a customer want to read it and eventually buy it? Furthermore, what would make them even recommend it to someone they know will be interested in it? It’s most likely that there are many other books with a similar title as yours. There are definitely countless others in the same genre as yours. And, there are also countless others with a similar message to yours. So again, what would make yours stand out as the buyer scrolls through the web? Why would they choose yours, it being side by side with all those others? That’s right. The very first thing that will be noticed is the image that’s displayed. But just like a great, eye-catching image can grab someone’s attention, so can a bad one expel any interest. There are so many great books out there that have suffered this problem, despite the rich content they carry. The content of your book may be just what they need, but unfortunately, it has to be read if it’s to make an impact. Talk about judging a book by its cover.
Just like athletes finally end up in the national championships, or the olympics, after years of hard work, training and preparing, this is where your book finally goes on display for the world to see. And just like there are different organisations known worldwide that athletes aim to compete in, so does the e-book publishing world have its big players that are the best to be published on. They are what Spotify or Apple Music are to the music industry. They are what Netflix is to the movie an TV show industry is. There are a good number of them, but the main ones are as follows:
- a) KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing): There’s no doubt that you know the world’s most popular e-commerce platform, Amazon, right? Well, Amazon owns the world’s most popular e-book platform, KDP. It provides readers with a device, the Kindle e-reader, which is exclusively linked to the kindle store. One of the reasons it stands out is its option to create a family account, and share books within it, again making it a price-friendly option to be thankful for.
- b) Apple Books (formerly known as iBooks): Apple would never miss out in the digital space. It continues to be one of the most popular and innovative companies today, and so it only makes sense that it has its foot in e-book publishing as well. As innovative as Apple always is, the document app, Pages, now comes with features specifically for creating and designing your e-book, its structure and more. Of course, it uses its iOS as a platform, and e-books can be read on your Macbook, iPad and iPhone.
- c) Barnes & Noble Press: Founded in 1886, saying that Barnes & Noble has been in the publishing industry for a long time would be an understatement. It had already established itself as a major bookseller by the time the digital revolution started, almost a hundred years later. Till today, it remains with the most retail outlets in the U.S.A. It’s only fitting that it has its mark on e-book publishing as well. Like Amazon and Apple, it has its own e-reader and tablets, NOOK, which use the Android platform.
From writing to editing, to formatting, to designing the cover, to publishing, and everything in between, publishing an e-book definitely takes time, patience, hard work, and also seeking the best professional services to ensure the excellent standards that are demanded by the internet, and the people.
Here at W2K, editing, cover art design and formatting services are offered at a very affordable price, not to mention that our team works hard and diligently with you, the client, to express yourself fully in your book; your voice to be heard, your point to be understood, and your book to be seen.