The e-publishing industry and the popularity of eBook conversion companies have grown as a result of the success of portable digital devices such as mobile, e-readers, tablets etc. There are many people who desire to become authors and have their books published, but getting approval from a good publishing house is not an easy task. The best alternative is of course self-publishing. In this case also, you need to do some background work to ensure that you are going in the right direction with your eBook. Everything is in a state of flux in eBook publishing, everything from the services to the marketing techniques.
Understand the Trend
Jane Friedman who writes comprehensively on the industry says that self-published titles account for about 60% of Kindles Unlimited (KU) reads and related borrows. According to Publishers Marketplace, an informational website for publishing professionals, of the overall 2.5 billion dollars earned by all authors in the U.S, 20% of that payout is earned by self-published authors.
If you are keen on becoming a popular author, you need to understand the kind of content that sells. Analyze what is popular among readers, what people are discussing, and what their concerns are. The Taleist Self-Publishing Survey found that the romance genre is the most popular and writers in this category are the biggest eBook earners with their titles earning around 170% more than their peers.
How to Go about Writing and Publishing Your eBook
- Come up with an original idea: Once you have a clear understanding of the popular genres, you can decide on what you want to write about. Remember, you can choose to write non-fiction material as well. There are various subjects such as sports, fashion, health, social issues etc that you can choose from. Currently, the most popular self published books belongs to genres that online communities enjoy – romance, fantasy, horror and crime thrillers.
- Edit and format the content: Once the content is ready, the second important step is to edit, format and proofread the content.
- Create an eBook file: ePub is the industry standard eBook format accepted by almost all retailers. You can utilize ePub conversion services for converting your content, which is the easier option or do the conversion using tools and services available such as the following:
- Vellum: This software is for Mac users only to create ePub files. It is easy to use.
- Scrivener: It is a writing software that is not free; it can export ePub files.
- PressBooks: This is a WordPress-based system that can produce both ePub and print files.
- Sigil: Open-source software that can be used to create ePub files. It requires you to be tech-savvy.
- Apple Pages: Software to export ePub files.
- Calibre: It is free software that is useful for file conversion to and from ePub. It is not very easy to use.
Highly illustrated works such as an enhanced eBook or a children’s picture book require you to hire professional services or use a dedicated portal such as Apple iBooks Author, Blurb, Book Creator, or KDP Kids’ Book Creator.
- Have a good cover designed: It is best to employ a professional eBook conversion company for this task because studies show that those who engage the services of expert editors, proofreaders and cover designers earn at least 34% more from their books than those who choose to do it themselves.
- Set a decent price for your eBook: It is important to price your eBook correctly. Find out the prices of other books in your genre and this will help to price your eBook accurately. According to research by Smashword, an online ebook publishing and distribution platform, titles priced between $2.99 to $5.99 yield the most profit for self-published authors. Although pricing the eBook at very low price can hurt the publishing author, prices which start low tend to go up as the popularity and demand increases.
- Get published: There are many publishing platforms like Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP)that allows you to publish youreBook. You can choose to work directly with online retailers or reach them through an eBook distribution service. The former brings you better profits and more control, whereas in the latter case you have to give up a percentage of your profits to the distributor. The advantage of choosing to work with an eBook distributor is that they may be able to reach outlets you cannot on your own such as the library market. They will ensure centralized administration and management of all your books and also offer you helpful tools to optimize book sales and marketing.
- Popularize your eBook: Once your eBook is online, create a website with information about yourself and your book, and engage with the readers. Social media is the ideal platform to send your book to popular bloggers and influencers and request them to review and talk about it online. Offer guest blogs and interviews and ask friends and readers to review your book on sites like Goodreads. This will help to gain popularity.
Popular eBook Retailers and Distributors
- Apple iBook store
- Barnes & Noble Nook Press
- Smashwords: Is the largest eBook distributor for self-published books. Has the widest reach particularly to the library market. There is no upfront cost involved, but they take a cut of your sales.
- Draft2Digital: They are smaller, but similar to Smashwords, and take a cut of your sales. They are more focused on customer service.
- Pronoun: This distributor reaches Amazon, Nook, Kobo, Apple and Google. You don’t to have to pay anything upfront. They offer data-based marketing insight and tools that help you better sell. They don’t take a cut of your sales either.
The ordeals of publishing are much less complicated when you choose eBook publishing rather than paperback. Partnering with eBook conversion companies will make the entire process hassle-free for authors considering self-publishing.