Steps 6–10 of Publishing a Book Yourself
Thinking of publishing a book yourself? Bravo! I urge you to do it. There is nothing like experiencing the exhilaration of being a published author. But before you begin, get a clue. Publishing a book yourself isn’t that hard! But, publishing a book yourself isn’t that easy either. Get the facts.
As a publishing coach, I have led writers through the self-publishing process to publish 100+ books. The steps below make it easy to conceptualize the big picture of publishing a book yourself.
Create a concept which is a compelling graphic rendering of the idea of your book. Provide cover art or photo to a graphic designer to design your cover. Hire a book cover designer using one of the online freelance services.
Be prepared with your concept, your cover photo, graphic, or image. Also, supply an author headshot for the back of the book. Supply a sales copy synopsis of the book, and a short author bio. You will need to offer the book cover template for the size of your book along with the estimated number of pages (to figure spine width), and the ISBN number assigned when you initiated your title in Step Five. Consider that your book cover may be an important piece and best done professionally when publishing a book yourself.
Like building a home, your architect creates an outer design with components such as a front porch, entryway, terraces, patios, driveway, landscaping and the overall exterior of the home; which is compared to your cover design.
Once you enter the home or open the book, the interior design is clear. Selection of colors, floors, finishes, woodwork, windows are interior design components of a custom-built home. For the interior of your book, select the overall look and feel using fonts, font sizes, illustrations, images, headers, and subheads, dividers, photos, and footers, page numbers, and other graphic elements.
Is your book scholastic, non-fiction, playful, serious, fiction, dramatic, informative, professional, technical, or fantasy-like? Create the look, feel, and tone that you want to convey in the interior of your book. Supply the designer (choose a specialist to avoid nightmares) the IBN for the copyright, all front and back matter, body, and chronological order. The Once Upon a Book Video Series outlines the ten basic steps of how to self-publish a book.
Submit interior and cover files for approval.
Once you upload these completed files, submit for approval by the print on demand company. These files most often are required to be in the form of a “print ready PDF.” Files in this format are widely accepted by most print on demand companies and will result in a high quality output. Be sure and insist to the cover and interior designer that all components be at least 300 dpi and that all be exported to a print quality PDF. This is the technical part of publishing a book yourself. Get help from professionals to be sure your files are built to specifications, or they may be rejected by the printing company.
Once your files are approved for printing, order a physical proof. Do not skip this step. So far you have been looking at digital files. A physical proof will show things undetected on the computer screen. Be sure to hire a professional proofreader make a last check for typos, spacing, punctuation, missing and duplicate words.
Hire a specialist from E-lance.com or Freelance.com. If you know someone who does proofreading for a living you want to hire them instead. Be sure to choose a style manual for them to use as the basic of their corrections, as there are many ways to proofread and make corrections on a book, and they are not all in agreement. This is as much an art as it is a science. Consistency is the name of the game, and using a style manual for proofreading and editing will get the most accurate corrections and consistency possible. Professional proofreading is of the most important steps in publishing a book yourself for getting a professional look and feel.
Once the proofread is complete, make corrections to your interior file and upload the corrected interior file to your print on demand account. Submit “publish.” With a print on demand account, you won’t need to buy an inventory of books. Order 1 or more books and your POD company prints them as ordered. Congratulations! You are a published author! BRAVO! If you would like a publishing consultation Deborah S. Nelson, offers them for $20 on Tuesdays and Thursdays.