Positive Imaging, LLC]
Shakespir Edition, License Notes
This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be resold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to Shakespir.com and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
There are long lists of markets for ebooks and many ways to create them. This ebook covers most of those in depth. There is no one best way, so the methods described herein are the ones I used for publishing my ebooks. These aren’t the only methods available nor necessarily the best. However, I used them successfully for years. As you read this ebook, you may well come up with ideas to improve upon the methods, and you are encouraged to do so.
The tools used to create the final manuscript for an ebook are the same as those used for creating a paperback book. Microsoft Word is the most common, and the one I use. There are other word processor and text creation applications that could work just as well including OpenOffice, a free office productivity suite, Microsoft Works, that often comes with a new computer. Since the final manuscript is just the edited version of your book, it’s only the first step in the actual creation of an ebook, the tool you use is not as important as the value of the content.
After several years of writing both paperback and ebooks, my favorite tool for creating the drafts and final manuscript is Microsoft Word. Over the years, I have also published books and ebooks for others and therefore worked with many final manuscripts. One issue that I run into often, especially with manuscripts created by highly expert Word users, is over formatting.
With some manuscripts, it takes me a great effort just to clear away the unnecessary and, for ebook publishing, problematic formatting. My advice to ebook creators is to use the Normal style and wait to do the formatting until the final manuscript is fully edited and ready for publication.
With both the Kindle and Shakespir markets, Word, or a similar word processing software, is the final application needed to format the final manuscript for the ebook conversion process required by each market.
NOTE: If you plan to reach markets such as Clickbank or to market ebooks directly your website, a good desktop publishing program will help you create a well-formatted ebook and an excellent pdf file for the final product. This is even more important if you plan to publish print books with companies like Createspace. The best and lowest price desktop publishing program I’ve used is PagePlus made by the British company Serif.
Of course, many will immediately state that publishing software is too expensive to purchase for an individual who publishes one book. That may have been true in the past but not any longer.
I have been using PagePlus X4 since 2007 and have created the print ready files for twenty print books and many pdf ebooks. PagePlus is easy to learn and comes with a complete, built-in user guide and additional resources including many excellent templates for various projects including books. And the best part is that some versions are often available from Amazon.com for only $20.00.
Serif, Inc., the creator of PagePlus X4 has many excellent products at reasonable prices and at this writing, the X9 version of PagePlus is available. It will certainly have many new and valuable features and should be an excellent investment. However, for only $20 you can get the X4 version which works great for creating any pdf ebook.
If you have any questions please email me at .
Your reasons for writing an ebook can set the tone for the entire writing process. It probably isn’t possible to list the many reasons why someone would want to write an ebook. Some write for the sheer joy of it and the potential for making money either doesn’t enter into the thinking or isn’t an important consideration.
Money or not, most write ebooks because they have something to say or something they would like to teach others. Some write because they wish to entertain others with good stories. Others are simply interested in telling everyone about their life or that of family members. There are no wrong reasons to write. Wanting to write should be enough for anyone.
Profit is certainly a good motive for writing an ebook. Writing is a great way to make a living, but profit may not be your motivation. If writing an ebook and publishing, it is your dream; then that is what you should do, and this ebook will help you get it done.
For me, writing has always been about making money. I enjoy the writing, but my goal has always been to profit from what I write. For that reason, I write about my knowledge and experiences and over the years I’ve managed to teach many people about various topics. In spite of the joy it gives me, I have never considered a writing project simply for the joy of it. But that’s just me, and you may be completely different. That doesn’t make your book any less valuable.
You may have an idea for an ebook from which you could profit. Perhaps you have a skill that others wish to learn and your ebook about it could help them to learn those skills. It may be a hobby that others would enjoy or a small business idea. If you have some basic knowledge that seems popular, what you know could make a good ebook. It could be an ebook about a specific niche. This book, for example, is in the self-publishing ebooks niche.
As with many other ebooks, this ebook is entirely based on my first-hand experience. Many writers use their first-hand experiences to write valuable and informative ebooks that help readers to do many things. It quite possible that you have a wealth of valuable knowledge that others would like to read about and comprise great topics for ebooks.
Only you can determine what method is best. You might even consider associating with someone who has a marketable skill and work with him or her to write an ebook about their skills and how others can learn how to do it and perhaps even make money following the instructions in the ebook.
Any combination of these methods will work. It’s not unusual to see an ebook with more than one author. In these ebooks both writers bring something to the ebook and together it becomes an interesting, cohesive, and valuable ebook. Some hire ghost writers because they have all the knowledge necessary but simply lack the skills to write it down in an organized and comprehensive manner. A ghost writer can use the information to come up with an ebook that contains the individual’s knowledge, and this person would take credit for the book.
Once you have decided to write your ebook, regardless of the method used, you must determine how to get it published so everyone can read about your skills or knowledge.
Step one for any ebook, after the basic idea appears, is to create a clear and concise plan. Knowing why you are writing the ebook is important to a viable plan for writing it. If you are writing simply for your enjoyment and to share some knowledge or an experience with anyone who may be interested, with little concern for potential Profit, then the first step should be creating an outline for your book.
You would begin with an outline by writing down all the major topics you wish to convey to your readers. Put them all down without attempting to flesh them out or place them in order. At this early stage spending too much time on individual topics could cause you to lose focus on the main topics. After you have listed them all, organize them in the best possible order so that each topic logically follows the previous one.
Now is the time to flesh them out. Go back to each topic one at a time and add whatever thoughts come to you on each topic. There is no certain length for this and don’t worry about structure. You are still at the thought development stage to cover as much as you can before beginning the writing. As you write down all these thoughts, new topics and ideas will come to you. Don’t dismiss them; write them down as they come to you even if they belong elsewhere. You can move them to a better location later. The important thing at this stage is not to lose the thought.
If profit is the main objective of your writing, another method may be more appropriate for you. Once you know the niche or topic of your book, find the market for that particular niche. That is, determine who will be purchasing your ebook and where you can find these prospects.
Knowing your market is critical because if you are unable to locate readers interested in your topic, it may be that a niche doesn’t exist or is so small as to make reaching it difficult and unprofitable. Since your intent is to profit from writing your ebook, this is a good time to revisit your concept and determine if you can alter it to make it more marketable or perhaps abandon the idea and look for a marketable niche.
While this ebook will not deal directly with marketing and promotion, the odds of an ebook selling are increased if you know your market and write your ebook to fulfill their needs. That is not possible if you have no idea about those who would be interested in your book. You not only want to know that there are people interested in your topic, but you must have some basic idea about how best to reach them.
While it may seem that this knowledge is about marketing and not writing or self-publishing, it’s just the opposite. This knowledge will help you write the ebook so that is of real value to your potential buyers and to create a cover that conveys a strong message that indicates that the information these buyers want is in the ebook to make your ebook marketable and contribute to increased sales before you even publish.
In this early planning stage, you also need to determine the final format. Kindle is popular, but it doesn’t work for some ebooks that require a much larger page. There is a larger Kindle, but it is considerably more expensive than the standard model or the Kindle Fire which is the one to which you should aim your ebook. There are other kinds of ebooks that work perfectly well even with letter size books.
Other chapters in this ebook will cover the other ebook methods including Shakespir, Clickbank, and other possibilities.
Once you have an outline that covers every topic in your ebook, determine if you need additional research, it should be fully compiled by now. If you still need more research, finish that and enter the additional information in the outline, so it’s well organized before actually sitting down to write. Once you start you want it to flow with as few interruptions as possible. Questions may come up during the writing that requires stopping to get answers but try to keep this to an absolute minimum.
That doesn’t mean that you stop learning. As your book progresses, keep reading information of interest and maintain a notebook on everything you do relating to the topic. Ideas can appear at any time and from anyone. If new ideas on a topic arise while you are writing and they contribute to the topic, include them in the ebook.
Use stories of personal experiences to help your readers develop a better understanding of specific topics or to emphasize your meaning regarding a specific point. These should be sprinkled throughout the book as they make reading more interesting, and readers usually enjoy these experiences, especially if it involves learning from a mistake. Such stories convey your humanity and get readers interested in you.
Use the outline to write your book. Don’t just print it out and use it as a guide. Double space after each topic and then write on that specific topic as many paragraphs as it takes. Don’t worry about the formatting during the writing as this is a draft and requires only a normal style without special formatting. You should be thinking only about your topic, not about how the formatting will look best.
Don’t try to edit as you go along. Write down all your thoughts on a specific topic to make certain you give your readers an in-depth look at every aspect of the topic. Editing will come later, but now you want to make certain that nothing is left out. Don’t concern yourself about potential redundancies. Later, during the editing, you can eliminate them or even merge them to make one clear sentence or paragraph.
Complete the entire book using this technique. It allows you to go back to each topic and read through it after reviewing the outline of that chapter. Working within the outline helps you to remember every detail you wanted to write about and keeps things relatively organized, and this will help later with the editing.
Each time you review the outline stirs new thoughts to add to the chapter. Don’t limit yourself to the outline. It is intended to help guide you through every topic you want to cover but if you have an idea for a chapter that’s not in your outline, put it down right away and continue writing. Then you can come back and flesh it out in full. Adding these thoughts stirs even more idea each time you do a review.
Don’t hesitate to add anything that contributes to the value of the ebook. If you read a lot on your topic or perhaps blog about it, new things come to mind, and this will be even more solid information for your readers. Keep this up during the entire time you are writing your draft and it will increase the value and quality of your book.
Keep writing as long as possible at each opportunity. Try to get the entire draft done in the shortest time possible to help get all your thoughts down. You may have more to add as you review but this provides a solid and partially completed base to work from to create a final first draft.
Set aside time to write and make it every day if possible. Write as much as you can during each writing session and always try to complete each separate topic before moving on to the next. Avoid stopping in the middle of a specific topic. Finish writing out every thought while it’s fresh in your mind to help the ebook flow and help you avoid forgetting information about a topic.
If you have family responsibilities, as many people do, it is essential to set aside a time when you can have some quiet. I suggest the mornings. Get up an hour earlier and start in before things get started for the day. You may have some time in the afternoon or evening but even if you don’t, you will have gotten in at least one hour each day.
Even if you only do that on weekdays, it will be five hours a week. Perhaps you can do more on the weekends. Before leaving my job as an IT Manager, I worked for an hour at least every afternoon and then several hours on weekends. Now I work on my writing and marketing at least 6 hours a day during the week and just a few hours on the weekend unless we have plans. Develop whatever schedule works for you but stick to it so you can get your book completed.
Once you have gone through the entire outline and have the first draft, read the entire thing while the outline listings are still in the file. During this first reading check for the chapter listings. Identify the chapter headings and the content that will appear in each chapter.
Now the most important thing is to protect this file. Save the file as it is and then click Save As and give the file the name of the book or a part of the name and add the date. For example, for this book it could be selfpublishing_5_19_16. Once saved, open the new file and then carefully delete all the outline listings, so all that remains is the book content with the chapter headings and it becomes your first draft ready for editing. Now save the file again and then back it up before your begin editing.
Backup of your writing files is critically important and often overlooked with disastrous results. The single most important and most forgotten fact about data backup is that it involves two copies of the data. As simple as that sounds I find that many people use flash drives or other external drives to keep their data and simply work directly from those files.
Data in any external drive is just as vulnerable as the data in your computer’s hard drive and will be lost forever if the drive becomes defective. Always maintain at least two copies of all your important data in separate storage to protect yourself against data loss. Remember, that having two copies means that, counting the original file, you have three copies of your ebook file.
Once you have completed your first draft and removed the outline listing, you are ready to begin editing. Even at this stage you can still add to the book if you learn some new and valuable information that will contribute to the topic or help readers to get more out of the content.
Choose your title carefully because it can contribute significantly to the successful marketing of your ebook. First, make certain that the title relates directly to the content of your ebook. As simple as this sounds, it is often ignored. The reader should learn exactly what your ebook is about and something about the content by simply reading the title even if it is brief. The subtitle should follow up by adding to the clarity but it shouldn’t be essential and definitely not the sole explanation of the ebook content.
Ever noticed how after viewing some TV commercials you are left wondering what they were advertising? It’s definitely not sensible to spend millions on a TV commercial that almost no one understands but it happens often. The same thing can happen to ebooks and the effects are just as negative. Take the time to make certain your title is clear and concise and not only tells the reader what to expect but also entices them to look inside.
While a strong cover is essential in a retail book store, most ebooks are sold online. This doesn’t mean that a good cover is less important. Actually, there are even more factors to consider, especially keywords.
Your title should contain searchable keywords directly related to your book’s niche. Searchable means keywords that are searched for regularly, especially on Google. You can start by deciding what you believe is the best keyword for the niche you have selected. In the case of this ebook they are Self Publishing and How-To Ebooks. Then you go to the Google Keyword Tool to find related keywords. You can find this tool at:
It’s a simple tool to use and will give you some valuable information. The main function of this tool is to help those who use of Adwords ads but you can use it to learn about the popularity of words and phrases on Google search. The first time you use it you are required to use a captha to make certain you are a person and not some robot trying to glean information automatically. A captha is the code you must copy accurately to enter various sites. After going through that you need only type in the words or phrases you want to check out. The tool will not only give you information regarding the popularity of your word or phrase but also create a long list of alternatives and their popularity. These alternatives are especially helpful in creating subtitles.
To develop the title of this book I used this tool with the word ebooks and the phrase self-publishing. The tool came up with three keyword phrases that I felt described the content of this book clearly and were also quite popular. The phrases were “selfpublishing”, and “how-to ebooks.” I used both in my title and will also use them in the content and search engine listing for the web site for this ebook.
With the title of your ebook strive for a high ranking by making certain your title is searched for regularly and in reasonably large numbers. Take some time to develop a good title. Make certain it isn’t too busy so as to make the text confusing or difficult to read. It should be clear at a glance and on a web site. Don’t hesitate to change it several times as you progress through the writing of your ebook and the preparations for publishing. You want a cover that will give you the best potential for a sale no matter where your prospective buyer sees the ebook.
The title of your ebook is critically important but it will be of little use online if the font is too small to view clearly. A large font is important because the first view of your ebook online will be the small cover photo. It is just barely larger than a thumbnail and a title will only be readable if it is a large enough. This is why a short title followed by a concise subtitle is so important. The title can be brief and as large as possible so it is easy to read while the subtitle is smaller but still readable especially after it is clicked on.
Many writers believe it is essential to hire a professional editor to edit their book or ebook and this is certainly a good idea because your familiarity with the content may cause you to overlook things that could improve your ebook. However, this poses two problems that must be dealt with carefully. The first is financial, good editors are often well paid so professional editing could require a significant investment. Such an investment is problematic for many writers causing the delay or even forgoing of publishing the book.
The second issue is your voice for the ebook. Writing an ebook is a personal thing and having someone make significant changes to it can be traumatic. For an editor to read your ebook to find and correct typos and grammatical errors is really a help. However, for an editor to do major rewriting that makes the ebook sound like someone else wrote it, is a serious problem. Naturally, how good a writer you believe yourself to be and how important it is to you to maintain your voice in the book will determine the seriousness of the problem. If you going to hire an editor for your ebook, make certain he or she understands what you expect before the job is started.
You can edit the ebook yourself but it can be tricky. There is a tendency to fall in love with your words and resist giving up any of them. If this can be overcome, there is a method of being your own editor that should work if you follow it carefully.
Step one is to put your draft aside for a full week or even better, two weeks. Then, read it carefully filling in any additional information that may come to you as you read. Many new ideas will popup that will add value to your ebook and now is the time to add them. Reading your draft carefully will shed light on issues, errors, or incomplete thoughts that require more work. Don’t hesitate to add anything that adds value to your content. This is the time to fix any obvious errors. After you have completed this step put the draft aside for another week and then begin the next step.
Step two is to read your ebook aloud. This will help you hear awkward phrasing. While doing this, pick up obvious errors but don’t try for perfection during the first read. Once you have finished put it down for one more week and then go through it slowly and carefully and edit it filling in any last minute ideas you may have.
If you are unsure about any section or paragraph in a chapter, try reading through it backwards. This sounds silly but it works because your brain is unaccustomed to the words in this fashion and misspellings and other problems will pop up.
It’s amazing how the brain works. It becomes accustomed to something and you simply won’t see the errors. During an art class years ago an instructor taught me how to make a good drawing of the subject in a photo by looking at it upside down. Your brain does not recognize what it is in that form and therefore you draw what you actually see instead of what you remember. For example, if you are drawing a chair, you already have many preconceived notions of chairs but if you turn it upside down your mind forgets those preconceived notions and you draw exactly what you see and get a much better drawing. The same is true of writing. Since you never read backwards your mind will not be able to use its preconceived notion of the content you are reading and that increases the odds that you will find mistakes.
The waiting time described previously may cause impatience or seem like a waste of time, especially if you are in a hurry to get your ebook published. It really isn’t wasted time if you plan to edit your own work. If you don’t put it down your mind will become accustomed to seeing certain errors and simply overlook them. So, instead of improving your draft by correcting errors you will become certain that everything is correct and ready for publishing. This is a mistake that will cause you to wind up with an ebook having many errors. Another thing that you can do once your ebook is fully organized exactly as you want it is to read the chapters out of order. Start reading from a chapter in the middle of the book and then jump around to other chapters in some random order. Change the order of the chapters each time you read through the ebook. This could open your mind to errors that it may not pick up if you read the ebook in the normal order.
The tendency when writing is to be too wordy. Certainly you will have to continue to add to your first draft as you read it and it becomes obvious that something was left out. However, for the most part editing should involve removing words not adding them. You want your writing to be concise because it is easier to read and understand. It is especially important to avoid redundancies. Repeating something when you are speaking to someone in order to make a point is one thing but repeating it in your writing, where someone can read it as often as they choose, is not a good idea. Not only could you be wasting your reader’s time, you may also be insulting their intelligence and turning off your readers can be problematic. Avoid passive sentences as much as possible. Try to stick with action sentences that involve doing not to be done. Keep the writing active and interesting for your readers.
A Good Editing Tool
There’s no replacement for a good editor, but you can improve your writing with online editing tools. There are many online editor companies, but my favorite is Grammarly. You can test it free to see how helpful it is to your writing by going to . It is free for use with the Chrome browser, but there is a fee to use it with Word. The best way to use it with Word is to download the Grammarly application and install it on your computer. Once installed it will work with Word whenever you enable it. It also works with Outlook. It is an excellent product that I’ve used for years, and it’s helped improve my writing.
Grammarly points out misspelling, poor grammar, and poor word choice. It is a great tool for getting your writing in good form. Use it every time you make changes to your content. After running through Grammarly, your ebook is ready for a final edit. If you feel qualified to do it yourself, wait at least one week before you start. If you know someone whom you respect and trust to edit your ebook, make use of them. If your budget allows, hire a professional editor. Even though it can get expensive, it will be much less because you have removed most of the mistakes.
Amazon Kindle is a great market for almost all ebooks. It can be a secondary ebook market for your paperback books, or it can be the sole market for your ebooks. Listing your ebooks on Amazon Kindle works great. If you begin with a paperback that is listed on Amazon and then publish an ebook version, both of them will be available on the same sales page, so your prospects have the opportunity to purchase either one.
There are some ebooks that are not ideal for the Kindle such as books that require the large 8.5×11 inch size or those that contain a large number of screen shots. Print books are often published in this large size to make the screen shots as clear and easy to view as possible. Publishing it as a Kindle ebook would render screen shots much too small. Ebooks in this size can still be sold as ebooks using other formats such as pdf and epub.
Because of the direct connection with Amazon, Kindle is the ideal place to publish ebooks. When you publish your eBook on Kindle it automatically appears for sale on Amazon.com. The Kindle publishing program is called KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) and they provide complete instructions and all the tools you need to convert your book file to a Kindle eBook file and begin earning up to 70% commission on every sale of your eBook.
Once you publish on Kindle your eBook will automatically be available for the iPhone, iPad, PC, MACs, Blackberry, and Android. No matter how your customers want to read your book it’s available and this increases sales.
In addition to the normal sales channels, Kindle has created a new lending library that while controversial has the potential to increase an author’s profit on ebooks. As part of this Lending Library Kindle has created a fund that begins with a half million dollars and increases to over six million to pay for the use of the books in the Lending Library. It may not mean much for some books but for popular books it can mean a windfall in addition to sales.
Joining the Lending Library program, called KDP Select, in no way affects your commission on books sold through KDP. Instead, it helps you to make money from readers who seldom purchase books. KDP Select can expose you to more customers and can increase your profits. You can get complete details about the KDP Select program at:
There are several easy to follow methods. One involves creating the manuscript using Microsoft Word and creating a .doc file. Remember that the newer versions of Microsoft Word create .docx files by default and these will not work well because of additional built-in code that may create issues when converted. To create a .doc file, which is best for this purpose, you have to choose Save As instead of just Save and save your manuscript as a .doc file. This doc file is the one to use for your formatting.
There are several important things to remember in creating this .doc file. Start at the KDP web site at by becoming a member. It’s free and gives you full access to some great tools and lots of free advice.
Kindle converts many formats to the final format for ebooks. These include Word, ePub, plain Text, MobiPocket, and HTML. There several ways to arrive at the final Kindle format and many companies are willing to handle the entire process for you for a fee ranging from quite reasonable to unreasonable. Since the KDP site is so informative, this book will only cover the one method I use to create the final file for conversion. This method works consistently and should work well for you and preclude the need to hire someone to do the conversion.
You can prepare the final file for KDP using any version of Word as long as you use the .doc format. Just follow the steps below to prepare the final file.
One – Use the Normal template only and avoid creating any unusual styles. These will present problems for the conversion. Writers sometimes attempt to format their book by creating complex styles while typing the draft. Keep it as simple as possible.
Two – Make certain that you are saving the file in the .doc format not the .docx format to avoid complications to the conversion process.
Three – You can use indentations, bold text, italics, and headings but avoid bullet points, special fonts, headers, and footers because they won’t transfer and the final result will not look good.
Four – Use a page break after each chapter to keep the text from running together in the Kindle reader. Remember, there are no specific pages in a Kindle reader since the user can alter the size of the font and can also read in both the vertical and horizontal position which alters the length of the lines. A page break will push the beginning of a chapter to a new page in the Kindle.
Note: The importance of the page break in creating a professional looking Kindle book can’t be overemphasized. To create a page break in Word simply click the Insert Menu at the top and the select Page Break.
Five – The Kindle automatically indents the first line of each paragraph and it displays the text fully justified so you don’t have to handle that aspect of the formatting. However, if you want a specific indentation at the beginning of a paragraph, do not use tab spacing. This does not convert into the Kindle format. To control the indentation use the Paragraph Formatting to set the first line indent.
Six – You can use images but it’s important to center them on the page and to control their location using page breaks. For example, if you want the picture to have a full page, place a page break after the text and then after the image to devote the full page to the image. If you would like an image set at the beginning of a chapter, put a page break at the end of the previous chapter, place the image and then use the Enter key to add one or two line spaces after the image and follow that with the rest of the chapter text.
Seven – Use .jpg images exclusively and Insert them into the manuscript. Remember not to copy and paste them into the manuscript. Even though the Kindle readers only see images in 16 shades of gray, leave the pictures in color because Kindle Fire and other readers can see the colors and they can be viewed in color using the free Kindle apps for PCs, MACs, iPad, iPhone, and Android.
Eight – Like a paperback, Kindle books can have a Title Page, Copyright Page, Dedication, Preface, Prologue, etc. You should have at least a title page, and each of these pages should be separated by page breaks to make them individual pages in the Kindle book.
There are several things that should be added to your Kindle book to make it a much better product. These are not required to upload your book and shouldn’t be used for short and simple books. However, longer and more complex books benefit from having a Table of Contents.
The easiest tool for creating an Active Table of Contents is Microsoft Word. If you are already using Word to create your manuscript, then it’s easy to begin the process. Before starting to work on the Active Table of Contents, use the Save As command to save the completed manuscript under a different name. You can simply add the numeral 1 at the end of the file name and save it. Then any changes you make to the file will not affect your completed manuscript just in case you encounter difficulties while creating the Active Table of Contents or any other aspect of the file.
Microsoft offers precisely detailed instructions on how to create an Active Table of Contents with any version of Microsoft Word. You can read or print out these complete instructions at:
An Active Table of Contents is a great tool for a How-To book because it makes it easy for the reader to choose various topics to read at any time.
Naturally, your book can also include Back Matter which are things like a bibliographies, appendices, glossaries, or notes.
Once you have completed your draft, edited it fully, and deem it a final manuscript, you are ready to upload to Kindle. Remember, the file must be in the .doc format not .docx.
OpenOffice creates a .odt file as the default but is also capable of creating a .doc file if you use Save As instead of just Save. While this should allow you to work with these files, it doesn’t always work perfectly for this work. OpenOffice Writer is an excellent application but if you choose to use it you should consider using it in conjunction with another excellent application called Jutoh that allows you to convert .odt files to Kindle ready files. Unlike OpenOffice, Jutoh is not a free application. It costs $39.00 and is well worth the price. However, since you can convert files for the Kindle with free applications provided by KDP, there is no need to pay for an application. It is simply another option for OpenOffice users.
The name Shakespir may not strike an inspirational note at first glance, unless you remember that Smash could also have a positive meaning. Take a few moments to check out the details on the Shakespir site and it may sound too good to be true. As it turns out, everything on the site is quite accurate.
The success of the Kindle rekindled (no pun intended) interest in ebooks. Their recent report indicating that they were selling 1.8 Kindle books to every paperback book proves that it would be unwise to ignore ebooks.
I had already begun reformatting my wife Barbara’s children’s chapter book for the Kindle when I heard about Shakespir. I immediately changed over and now have it published as an ebook with Shakespir. It simply made sense because Shakespir is a leading independent ebook publisher and distributor with well over 200,000 titles already published. Check out my two ebooks on Shakespir at:
[Lottie’s Adventure: A Kidnapping Unraveled
Relationship Basics: Keeping It Happy And Healthy
Even though these two books are still available on Shakespir, there are now later editions of both books and they are available on Amazon as print books and Kindle ebooks. A link to the websites for these books is listed below:
There is no question that Shakespir is the quickest path to getting a book published and noticed. Please remember to read the format requirements before submitting your books for acceptance. Some have had difficulty successfully formatting their book even though it’s not that difficult. The procedure for preparing a Word document for Shakespir is almost identical to Kindle’s. You set up an Active Table of Contents and then take the additional step of making each item on the Table of Contents into a Bookmark.
Fortunately, Smashword’s helpful owner, Mark Coker, is clearly someone who knows how to create comprehensive how-to information. You can download an invaluable Style Guide and follow it carefully so your ebooks will get accepted the first time.
If you’ve created ebooks, even for the Kindle, you’ll find Shakespir unique. You submit only one properly formatted manuscript and Shakespir, using a computer affectionately called the meatgrinder, turns it into a multi-format ebook that can be purchased and read on many platforms. This multi-format availability is based on a two-step process.
There is nothing else you have to do other than get the word out about your ebook. Shakespir handles all the sales for you, creates a sampler version of your ebook, and you choose whether to provide from 20% to 50% of your ebook to potential customers before they buy. You can also create coupons for special deals, like a certain number of free copies or special discount for a certain time, to encourage sales. Shakespir also does a great deal of marketing for you by showing your other books, should you have more than one. Plus, they show your book when someone is searching for related topics similar to Amazon.
If you are a writer with several books, then your standard profile is fine. If you publish books for other writers, you have to join as a publisher. Either way, there are no fees to join and no cost to publish. Being a publisher is slightly more complex, but it allows you control of all your books. Depending on the arrangement, you will get between 70% and 85% of the income from the sale of your ebook. Shakespir makes their money from the balance.
Premium Level is the ultimate step in Shakespir, and it is a good idea to strive for this level. There are significant advantages and it’s a little more difficult to get your manuscripts accepted at this level, but there is still no cost involved. The most important advantage of the Premium Level is that your ebooks become available on more markets including Apple (iPad and iPhone) Barnes and Noble within their Nook ebook format, and Droid. You don’t have to attain Premium Level to be a Shakespir author, but it could make a significant difference in sales.
For those considering self-publishing, Shakespir is the perfect way to start. It’s easy to create an acceptable manuscript using Word and you can make revisions and upload a revised copy at any time. It also helps you determine if your book is salable before making a larger investment. With the present trend towards ebooks, Shakespir is a good place for self-publishers.
Kindle and Shakespir are not the only games in town for ebooks. Clickbank is a good place for .pdf based eBooks. You can use the same methods used for creating a print ready file except you would add a front and back cover file. Then the book is uploaded to Clickbank and if it is approved, they will sell it for you.
Clickbank provides a unique service in that they not only set up a place to store and sell your eBook, they also have thousands of affiliates who may decide to sell your eBook through their website to get a commission from the sale. You decide the amount of the commission you wish to pay and then place your eBook in the database. Any affiliate interested in selling your eBook obtains a link to use on their site and that link identifies them so when anyone buys the eBook using their link, you make a profit, and they collect a commission on the sale. If your ebook is on a popular topic and leaves a reasonable commission, it may be sold by hundreds of affiliates thereby multiplying your sales significantly without any effort on your part.
You can learn all about Clickbank at their main site:
In addition to their informative home page, you will find a large collection of valuable articles to help you to use Clickbank successfully to sell your ebook and you could even sell other ebooks related to your topic by becoming a Clickbank affiliate.
For any of you who already have websites set up and a list of potential buyers, you may consider handling everything yourself. You start by creating your ebook in the .pdf format. You can simply use the letter size, 8.5 × 11 commonly used, but I suggest separating yourself from the pack by creating your eBooks in the 5 × 7 size easily viewed on any device. Using a format in this size allows the reader to see one page at a time without scrolling.
Another positive thing for your eBooks in the .pdf format is to create an interactive table of contents to help readers who may know a great deal about the topic but just needs some specific information.
You can make your eBooks even easier to use by adding links on each page. For example, each page can have a small button at the bottom for the next page, the previous page, going back to the table of contents. Or a Go To specific page which allows you to select a page in which you are interested. Unlike regular ebooks, pdf ebooks have individual pages and the font size can’t be changed, so these additional features can be added and are appreciated. None of these things are essential, and they do require software capable of working within .pdf documents. While many believe that only Adobe makes such software, and at a quite high price, actually there are many companies that make this software for much more reasonable prices including PDF Converter Professional 7 available at the link below where you can also download a free trial version to test for yourself.
There are many free tools you can use to create .pdf files and office suites such as OpenOffice and Microsoft Office have built in tools to create .pdf files from the documents created with them. However, for editing and improving .pdf files a program such as PDF Converter Professional 7 is invaluable.
The main advantage of selling your ebooks from your website is that all of the profits are yours. It’s a significant advantage but requires you to have considerable skills and a payment process to collect for your sales. The skills involve creating your website sales page for your book. You also need the skills to market your book by creating traffic to your website and conducting many other marketing activities beyond the scope of this book.
The payment process is not as complex as it sounds. For a minor fee, you can get set up with Paypal to collect for the sale of your book or ebook. With Paypal, you can even set up a shopping cart if you have several books or ebooks to sell. Get complete details about Paypal at their main website:
Another disadvantage of handling all your sales is that it requires you to get much more serious about running a business. You have to make arrangements to collect and pay the sales tax on your sales. You also have to set up your credit card payment process as previously indicated because sales aren’t handled by a company like Clickbank, Amazon, or Shakespir, who would take care of everything and report to you on your income.
Creating a draft manuscript does not require an expensive word processor capable of handling complex office productivity. While Microsoft Office with MS Word is an excellent tool, if you don’t already own it, there is no need to make the investment to publish ebooks.
Open Office is a perfectly adequate office suite that is comparable to MS Office and capable of doing anything necessary to produce an outline and a draft manuscript. It is an easy download and install from the following website:
OpenOffice is open source software making it completely free and the website contains a great deal of valuable information and a community of users that participate actively.
In addition to being adequate for preparing manuscripts, it is an excellent office productivity suite that serves small businesses well. The learning curve for Open Office is similar to that of Microsoft Office but for creation of a manuscript, it is quite easy to use.
The introduction to the Scribus application on their website states the following: “Scribus is an Open Source program that brings professional page layout to Linux/UNIX, Mac OS X, OS/2 Warp 4/eComStation and Windows desktops with a combination of press-ready output and new approaches to page design.”
“Underneath a modern and user-friendly interface, Scribus supports professional publishing features, such as color separations, CMYK and Spot Color support, ICC color management, and versatile PDF creation.”
Scribus has fascinated me for some time and I plan to learn to use it and begin with publishing a booklet to get a feel for it. I have played around with it and it seems to be great application with infinite potential and, most importantly, it is open source and therefore completely free. The application can be used for both formatting and layout but is also an excellent tool for creating book covers. As a good, all-in-one tool it merits the time to undergo its significant learning curve. I view that as a worthwhile effort and in time it may replace the Serif applications in my publishing business.
Scribus can be downloaded free at:
Gimp is an excellent application that is available free to anyone. It seems to be the equal of Photoshop, an excellent but expensive application from Adobe. On the Gimp website you will find the following details, “GIMP is the GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed piece of software for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. It works on many operating systems, in many languages.”
“It has many capabilities. It can be used as a simple paint program, an expert-quality photo retouching program, an online batch processing system, a mass production image renderer, an image format converter, etc.”
“GIMP is expandable and extensible. It is designed to be augmented with plug-ins and extensions to do just about anything. The advanced scripting interface allows everything from the simplest task to the most complex image-manipulation procedures to be easily scripted.”
“GIMP is written and developed under X11 on UNIX platforms. But basically the same code also runs on MS Windows and Mac OS X.”
Gimp has the advantages of Photoshop without the high price tag. I have used Gimp many times but am still in a learning phase. Since I own Photoshop and PhotoPlus X6, there isn’t much motivation to learn a new graphics program. However, for those willing to meet the challenge of a lengthy learning curve, Gimp is the best deal around. It is another one of those applications I will get around to learn when time permits and I recommend it to anyone.
Gimp can be downloaded free at: .
This is another good photo editing application. CNET editors gave it four stars and wrote the following about Photoscape: “Add another name to the roster of feature-rich freeware image editors: PhotoScape. Although it eats and leaks about as much memory as Firefox, this editor is perfect for those making the jump between JPEG and am-pro dSLR work.”
“It supports RAW, as well as all other major image formats from JPEG and PNG to animated GIFs. It comes with prebuilt templates for users to create photo collages, fumetti, and Web comics, and has a standard set of red-eye removal, light/shadow, and contrast-editing features. One warning about the RAW processing: although it looks like you can drag and drop, the converter doesn’t change RAW to JPEG unless you load the RAW file from within the native file navigator. It’s a minor bug, but one that can lead you to believe that there’s no RAW support at all. You can also batch edit images, combine them, and print them out one at a time or several at once.”
In all honesty, I have only used Photoscape to process my vacation photos. I returned from Spain with over 1,300 digital photos and thought that I would face a nightmare editing, culling out, and preparing a slide show. Instead, Photoscape easily facilitated batch editing and made the job quite pleasant. So, if you need to edit a large number of photos, this is an excellent tool. It is also capable of much more in the hands of someone willing to learn how to use all of its features.
Photoscape can be downloaded free at:
An excellent WYSIWYG website creation software. The publisher accurately describes it as: “Nvu (pronounced N-view, for a “new view”) makes managing a web site a snap. Now anyone can create web pages and manage a web site with no technical expertise or knowledge of HTML. Finally! A complete Web Authoring System for Linux Desktop users as well as Microsoft Windows and Macintosh users.”
I used NVU for years and still manage some of my websites with this easy to use application. Admittedly, I now use Serif’s WebPlus for many of my websites because, like PagePlus and PhotoPlus, I find it easy to use and enjoy good support for the product. However, I highly recommend NVU as an excellent, free web creation application
Nvu can be downloaded free at:
If you spend any time on the web, you have received information about free software. It is readily available, and much of it is quite good. Unfortunately, many such applications come with hidden dangers including trojans (Viruses that hide inside tempting free software downloads.) that can damage your computer.
Since so much of this software is quite good, it is a good idea to make use of it to publish your ebook or to perform other computer-based tasks. There is a simple and safe way to make certain that the free software you download is safe and effective. You simply have to make certain that you only download software from safe locations on the web.
There are quite a few safe places to get free software but listed below are two that have been around for years and never include anything dangerous with the free software you download. These two are CNET and SourceForge and their main web sites are listed below.
– this is the main site so just click the Download tab.
– this is the main site where you just select your category and find free software.
While on the subject of free software is a good time to deal with the issue of viruses. It’s critical for those who work with computers, as do most writers and publishers, to protect their computers from viruses. This makes perfect sense but it’s amazing how many people ignore the need for antivirus software or install the software and fail to update it on a regular basis. And, with the continued virus attacks across the Internet, updates are required almost every day.
Virus protection has become a growth industry, and there are many excellent tools on sale from reputable companies. One such reputable company that has proven itself over many years is Avast. In addition to their popular professional and reasonably priced Anti-virus and Internet security software, they have an excellent free product available for a simple registration.
Free Avast is available at the CNET website listed previously and at Avast.com. The CNET site states: “Avast made great strides in its previous update. Version 5 set the stage for the modern, massively popular, and free security suite with a new interface that ditched a quirky, late-‘90s jukebox style for a more polished look. Easier to navigate, it also became easier to add new features.”
“Make no mistake; Avast 6 adds features both big and small. Some that had previously only been available to paid upgrade users are now free for all versions, and newer features have been seamlessly added to the interface experience. If you’re familiar with Avast 5, upgrading to Avast 6 won’t be that big of a leap.”
I have used Avast for almost five years now on both my personal computer and my wife’s and have always [_ been well- protected . What I like most is that it continuously updates itself and regularly prompts you to download the latest version only requiring free registration every fourteen months.] _An excellent cost saving product.
Especially in a tough economy, it makes excellent sense to take full advantage of free quality software such as OpenOffice, Scribus, NVU, Gimp, and Avast. However, it is critical to search for safe products from safe locations to avoid having your computer contaminated by viruses.
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I want to make the self publishing report invaluable to you, so please email me with questions, comments, articles, or any information you want to share. This will add value for all members of the group. Please send all emails to .
I help many authors to get their books published with consultation and coaching. In some cases, I handle the entire publishing for authors. If you need help to get published please visit my website at , email me at , or call me at 512.217.4803. I’ll be glad to discuss your ideas with no obligation.
If you want to do it all yourself but need some guidance, please check out my Self Publishing book. Complete information and a link appear below. Thank You!
After publishing a half dozen print books and several ebooks I began writing Self Publishing: How To Publish Your Print Book or eBook Step by Step. It took a while to write because I wanted to cover every step of the methods I used in detail. This was the ninth book I published and have since published eleven more print books and many ebooks. It’s not easy to publish a book alone, but it can be done and this book shows you how. The Cover below is a link to a website with complete information about this comprehensive book. Check below the cover for reviews. Thanks.
“At last, a clear an comprehensive guide through the self-publishing process, using free and/or inexpensive software.”
Barbara Florio Graham, author and publishing consultant,
“This workbook is an amazing publishing guide for any author who wants to do it all him or herself.”
Patricia Fry, author, speaker, editor
Excellent Self-Publishing Resource
If you are looking to publish your own books then Self Publishing: How To Publish Your Print Book or eBook Step by Step by A. William Benitez is a great resource for you. This book will help you to identify the steps you should take if you are looking to publish your own books. Benitez states that he identified these steps through many years of his own personal experience.
When you read Self Publishing you will learn the definition for the different types of publishing, including self-publishing. You will get help in planning your book from an idea through a full-fledged book including choosing great cover art, editing the content, and choosing the right formatting. In this book Benitez also will help you learn how to create a great searchable title as well as how to use both publishing software and productivity software. You’ll also get Benitez’s input on good point of delivery printers and ebook publishers.
This book is a great resource for all of your self-publishing needs.
After spending much of my youth working in construction in Tampa, Florida, I went to work for local government managing federal assistance programs for several years and then as a consultant to government agencies. During those years I was asked to write a book about housing rehabilitation by the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, and it sold thousands of copies and while there was no payment I gained excellent national publicity. I parlayed that publicity into a one person business writing, publishing, and consulting for local governments across the country. In addition to the consulting, I wrote and published seven more books and a monthly newsletter on housing rehabilitation.
This was well before the advent of POD so publishing those books involved a significant investment. After the presidential election of 1980, all the federal financing for housing rehabilitation activities dried up and the consulting and publishing business diminished. Finally, I returned to construction and home repair and then to the woodworking business I ran for over 20 years first in Tampa, Florida and then in Austin, Texas.
During those years in woodworking, I wrote and published a small book called “Simplified Woodworking I: A Business Guide For Woodworkers” and it sold well for a couple of years. I also published a newsletter called “Simplified Woodworking” that never really took off but was a good writing and publishing experience.
In 1998, in response to poor technical support for my wife’s computer, I managed to fix it and that peaked my interest in computers. That early interest led me to move into information technology obtaining both an A+ and MCSE certification. For years I worked as both a computer technician and a network administrator for a Hyatt hotel.
In 2007 my wife wrote an excellent children’s book but could not generate interest in it from a traditional publisher. Since I had published books years earlier, I decided to publish her book and began to learn all I could about POD. Publishing her book was a real learning experience and it took several tries to get my files approved for printing. After that I published a book that I wrote on the woodworking business and decided to start my publishing company. Since then my company Positive Imaging, LLC has published twenty paperbacks and many ebooks on Kindle, Shakespir, and Clickbank.
Paperbacks written by A. William Benitez and published by Positive-Imaging, LLC include:
An Expert Woodworker Reveals The Keys To Succeeding In The Woodworking Business
Using Your Skills To Make Money In Any Economy
How To Make Money With Your Skills
A Woodworker’s How-To Guide To Biscuit Joinery
Your How-To Guide For Making Beautiful and Functional Projects
[+:+] How To Publish Your Print Book and eBook Step by Step
Notes on Love, Mutual Respect, Boundaries, Marriage, and Divorce
Paperbacks published by Positive Imaging, LLC include:
By Barbara Frances
By Lucretia Jones
Scientific And Spiritual Testimonies To The Unity Of All Things
By Irie Glajar
Essays on Modern Education for Teachers, Students, and Parents
By Irie Glajar
By Irie Glajar
The Education Of A Sociologist
By David Weiner
EBooks of all the print books listed above are available from Kindle
Everything described in this book is based on my first-hand experience writing, formatting, creating covers, and publishing the books and ebooks listed above. I’ve has hired graphic artists to do some covers and other jobs but I do the covers for my books. I use the software that I recommends to create books, ebooks, and related websites and do business with the recommended companies regularly.
I enjoy sharing all kinds of information with others and spend a lot of time every day answering questions. I honestly believe that anyone willing to take the time to follow the steps described in this book can learn how to publish quality ebooks.
Everything described in this book is based on my personal experience. Over the years, I have gained much experience in the publishing business and published over twenty paperback books and many ebooks. I am a competent, though not extraordinary, businessperson. Anyone with good computer skills and a sincere desire to learn may be able to attain similar results if he or she puts in the effort. Nevertheless, no guarantees are expressed or implied regarding your results using the information in this book.
Some individuals are more apt to profit from self publishing books and/or ebooks than others due to the level of their skills, business acumen, and communication abilities. Regardless of my experience over the years, I can’t guarantee that you will succeed in this or any business.
Business of any kind involves the risk of loss, including, but not necessarily limited to, money, time, and energy. I have made every effort to accurately describe my experiences in detail but cannot be held liable for the success of failure of your self publishing venture.
This book includes the names of and information about several brand name products. All of these are products I have personally used but I own no interest in any of the manufacturers or distributors of these products nor have I received any payment for listing them in this book. I list them solely because they have worked for me and they are reasonably priced or free.
The user of this information agrees that he or she is solely responsible for the consequences of using any products described in this book. It is also the user’s responsibility to conduct a reasonable level of due diligence before making any business or legal decisions. The information contained and distributed in this book is not intended as nor should it be considered professional, business, or legal advice.
For any questions please contact
If you have a story to tell or a skill to teach others, ebooks are the perfect vehicle to get your message across. In this down-to-earth, easy to read, how-to ebook by Bill Benitez you will find detailed instructions on writing, editing, and preparing a quality ebook for Kindle, Smashwords, Clickbank, and even your own website. The step-by-step instructions, based entirely on years of first-hand experience, will guide you through the entire process. As added value you have access to a how-to blog and an email address for questions.