Monday, October 3, 2011

Tips on Publishing to Kindle

Good Morning. Some of you may have noticed I published a post on Saturday. Well, it wasn't supposed to happen like that. As I'm in the process of actually publishing to Kindle now, my brain is getting fried and the simplest tasks (like remembering a date, go bye-bye.) So before I forget all these, I'm going to share a few more tips with you on how to publish to Kindle.

Now these are after you've done all your formatting on your word.doc correctly, reviewed the manuscript, and are ready to upload to the Kindle process.

1) Be sure to read all the Kindle "Help" pages before you even start.

2) Make sure you have a "small" and a "large" cover. Your cover designer should already know this. You need the small one for the thumbnail print (where it says "upload your cover" (I believe this is step 9 on the first page). My small cover was around 250 x 350 pixels. The large should be at least 700 x 1200 pixels. (This is when you upload it for the book itself.)

3) Also, download the MobiPocket Creator and the Kindle Previewer (not Kindle for PC but the Previewer) before you begin the process. It will save you boatloads of time and aggravation. (They take a few minutes to do therefore should be done beforehand because once you get started on publishing the book, you really don't want to take time out to wait for downloads.) You can get the Kindle Previewer if you go to Amazon and plug that into their search engine. The page pops up and you have to scroll down to find it, but it's there. I believe you can get the MobiPocket Creator just by googling that.

Okay, and this next step was hard for me, I had to do it three times before I did it correctly so I suggest you pay attention. (Because I didn't read what I was supposed to read first.)

4) Before you can upload to the MobiPocket Creator you have to save your word.doc to HTML format. Click on File > Save > Web Page > (a box appears) click Web Page, Filtered. (A box will appear that says "Saving this material you may lose information." Ignore it and continue. Trust me. It will save you the panic. And three different uploads.) Now also make sure the name of the file is the title of the book. (Because I didn't and the whole thing got so messed up.) Click Save and it should appear in your files as an HTML doc.

When you upload to the MobiPocket, these steps are very straightforward and if you've done everything correctly, it should "Build" your book in record time. Also if you've already downloaded the Kindle Previewer, you can see what it will look like before you hit "Save and Publish". Don't get all freaked out if you don't see the page breaks, they don't show up. And the cover will be in black and white. If everything looks normal, you're good to go.

5) Also, another important thing to remember, when you're writing any of the information on Page 1, Title, Description, Contributors, etc. there are two little boxes in the bottom right hand corner of the page. One says Save as Draft, the other, Save and Publish. DO NOT TOUCH the Save and Publish key until you have filled everything out, looked at the book, and are really ready to go to page two. While you're writing your stuff, and filling out your fields, hit Save As Draft after every field. Especially the Description. I didn't realize you should because I blinked and it was all gone. Three times. Yeah, learn something from my mistakes. It'll save you a sleepless night and a migraine.

6)Make sure you take a good look at the Pricing and Royalty page. If I read it correctly, you can only get 70% on certain countries. Austria, Canada, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland, United Kingdom (also check Guernsey, Jersey, Isle of Man), United States. *Belium, *France, *Monaco (***As of late October). You'll have to check off each of these countries separately. If you're only doing the 35% you can hit World Wide Territories. And also, that has to do with your price point. It's the difference between 99 cents and $2.99. If you hit World Wide Territories on a $2.99 book, you'll only get 35% royalties. (That's if I read it correctly.) Which is why you need to put in the single countries themselves for the 70% royalty rate. (Math is so not my strong suit so if anyone knows any different, please jump right in and let me know.)

7) Now this last thing should be a no brainer, but for me, it was late and I was crazed from doing all the downloads. When you find the field that says "Contributors" put your name there as author. I didn't and I got a nice letter informing me I had only listed the illustrators. So don't forget about you. (And by the way, they don't have a listing for "Cover Designer" so I used "Illustrator".)

And so, I think that's that for all my fumbles and bumbles along the way. I have some more tid-bits of information to share, but you'll have to wait for next time. Hope these help. And if anyone has any other input to share, PLEASE feel free to jump in in the comments. I am no expert.

25 comments:

Bish Denham said...

Wow, learning a lot. You make it sound relatively easy, despite the times you "messed up." Good luck Anne!

Anne Gallagher said...

Bish -- It actually IS easy once you know what you're doing. And if I knew how to read computer language it would be a whole lot easier.

Linda G. said...

Great info! Thanks for sharing what you've learned by trial and error.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Another post to bookmark, just in case I ever get around to trying any of this. Thanks.

And every time I come to your site, I admire your lighthouse and that wonderful quote from one of my favorite novels.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

This is awesome info, Anne. You're saving a lot of people a lot of frustration by sharing your knowledge with us. Thanks! :D

Lydia Kang said...

You are awesome for sharing your Kindle experience, thank you!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Yipes, you're almost there! And I'm more sure than ever that this isn't something I'd care to tackle myself. Not that you can't reach an old dog new tricks, mind you, but this old dog would rather pay someone else to go nuts than make the journey again myself. Thank you sooooo much for posting all of this info, though.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'd have to say you are now an expert at this, Anne!

Talli Roland said...

Great tips, Anne! It's so nice of you to share everything you've learned.

Mac said...

I added this to my "work plan" over on my blog (from 9/14)

Anne Gallagher said...

Linda -- More error than trial.

Yvonne -- Don't let the batards grind you down. It's so apt.

Stina -- Anytime.

Lydia -- Not awesome, just paying it forward.

Susan -- Well, even if you never use it, you can always direct whoever does do yours to this page.

Alex -- Maybe not now, but by the time I'm done with the second one I may be.

Talli -- Hope some of it helps you.

Mac -- I think I'm going to start a "page" for all this stuff and just link to it that way.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Oh my gosh, my brain is spinning. But good info to know for sure. Thanks for sharing your hard work!!

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

huh, i guess i didn't even notice that the other post was posted on a friday. Crazy!

Theresa Milstein said...

It seems daunting to publish on Amazon. Lots of kinks. I wish you the best of luck!

Donna Hole said...

Expert advice Anne. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience. Wow.

.......dhole

Patti said...

You are an excellent source of information. Thanks for doing all that research.

Writer Pat Newcombe said...

You certainly seem to have gotten this kindle stuff all sorted! I am impressed!

VR Barkowski said...

The idea of publishing on Kindle is so daunting I want to run and hide. This is fabulous information, Anne. Thank you!

Deniz Bevan said...

Wow, thanks Anne! It's great to learn about this stuff from fellow author who've been down the road already.

Sherrie Petersen said...

Wow, so many people are publishing to Kindle and I'm excited to read them all!! When will yours be available?

Sherrie Petersen said...

Wow, so many people are publishing to Kindle and I'm excited to read them all!! When will yours be available?

Angela Ackerman said...

Huge thanks for these tipes--they will really come in handy! :)

Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Joanne said...

Thanks for sharing. More and more authors are self-publishing and it's nice to see their advice as they do so!

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Great tips! I'm stumbling through this myself! (p.s. hopped over from Stina's blog - I'm a new follower!)

Jeremy Bates said...

great info! thanks