Hi again! I don’t post this often, but I’m feeling inspired – or ranty – whichever you prefer to call me.
So the self-publishing process is interesting. I figured I would take a little time to share what I’ve learned so far, in just the past week or so.
The book I published, Reckoning, is available on both Kindle, through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing program, and on Smashwords, through their self-publishing service, which, in my opinion, seems better than Amazon’s. Smashwords made it unbelievably simple to get my book out to other distributors, so I’m not limited to Amazon anymore, as I thought I would be. A part of me wishes I’d done more research and tried harder, because it only took a few Google searches to find Smashwords, and publish through them. They made my book available on their site nearly immediately, and also reviewed it and added it to their premium catalog. I love that they have this, because it forced me to be much more conscious of the way my book is formatted and presented. In order to be eligible for their premium catalog, there are guidelines writers have to follow in their formatting and content (copyright stuff, disclaimers, etc) in order for their various distributors to accept the eBook.
Not only does Smashwords make your book available at major retailers, but they also provide a ton of guiding material for marketing and formatting. The founder, Mark Coker, wrote the guides and is not only helpful, but hilarious. His guides are fun and easy to follow, so the 2+ hours I spent reformatting my book to fit the Smashwords guidelines last night were actually enjoyable – and I learned a thing or two about Microsoft Word in the process. I even went so far as to update the version of the manuscript I have on the Kindle because I loved Smashwords’ suggestions for formatting that much! Thanks to them, the eBook looks much more professional than it would have had I not discovered them as a publishing venue.
All in all, Kindle’s service was great, if all preliminary material was taken care of (read: for non-first time self publishers). Otherwise, Smashwords blew them out of the water, since they showed that they take an active interest in not only putting a writer’s work out there, but doing so in a way that presents them best. Their standards for publication are way higher, and therefore makes them a way better place to go if you’re unsure of the process.
So that’s it on my rant, I guess. Just wanted to share some stuff. The moral of the story: Research, research, research! Lesson learned.
Thanks for reading!
Links to the aforementioned publishing locations:
Link to Reckoning on Smashwords.
Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing: https://kdp.amazon.com/