If I go back to when I first started writing in 2012 I didn’t know squat about publishing, never mind needing lessons in grammar, and the person’s voice. Like many others out there I tried traditional publishing. You remember the first publisher of Fifty Shades? It was an Australian Publisher – Yeah I tried them and was rejected, though I’ll say even now, my work was no worse than … I also looked for an Agent who thought they were Editors. No…they weren’t or if they were, they didn’t understand the historical genre of my novel. Since that time this same agent sent work to a UK Publisher who was iffy to say the least. In fact they closed down without paying anyone out and their bookstore was still going…probably still is.
Anyway I found out that manuscripts needed setting out a certain way to be accepted by a traditional publisher. While I set out to learn I bumped into self-publishing and decided to go that way instead.
By the time I had learnt enough to make paperbacks and ebooks I had written four books. I bought some copies and was delighted with the results (now I just groan at my obvious need to learn more). I took them to the local writers group which showed little interest. Few of them were authors even less were published. This is where my company came in. “Can you publish my books for me?” said one man. “I can give it a go.” And I did. That journey though, is another story.
This all happened in May 2014. My company Plaisted Publishing House became a Limited Company on 1st August 2014. I filled out all the forms, set up a bank account registered for GST (VAT) etc. After paying or getting a refund on GST over three months I discovered I didn’t need to pay any until my business earned $60K NZD which won’t happen anytime soon due to the fact I have no investment other than what I earn and put back into the company. My aim was to start slowly and build gradually and make sure I wouldn’t fail or should I say close my company. It’s worked too.
Now you’ll note that even though I’ve published my own books, I stated I still had much to learn. My journey was only at the beginning. Over the last four years I’ve developed my business, building my professionalism, sharing what I know with the Indie Author Community. I’ve assisted over Thirty Indie Authors. If I included the Anthologies I could say I’ve assisted over one hundred.
As I’ve improved my learning (which I am still doing today) I have increased my prices, however, they’re still lower than most. You see I work in a different way. The aim of my company is to work with small businesses to contract work out to them and create packages for clients. All clients keep their copyright, all royalties and receive at least four formatted manuscripts for the different distribution websites. A client pays once. There is no profit made from continual book sales. A client could become a best seller…a millionaire…YOU STILL WON’T PAY ME ANYMORE….well unless you want too…LOL.
Welcome to the world of LULU Uploading. As promised here is the second installment about UPLOADING…This time it’s for eBOOKS.
WE start with picking what we wish to publish, of course this time it is the ebook we wish to do. So follow the images and I’ll explain what is what as you scroll through them.
You picked the ebook now it is time to think about if you wish to do this for FREE or need to ask for help. This of course depends on how proficient you are at formatting and if you can format the way LULU need you to.
One think I have noticed with ebook distribution sites, they all have their own styles of formatting. Some are easier than others. Once in the know…it becomes easy.
This blog is about how to publish your book for FREE and we would hit ‘MAKE YOUR EBOOK’ Tab to continue.
Meanwhile. If you need any assistance and a guiding hand you can ask for some professional support from LULU – who will handle the heavy lifting for you.
The choice is made and you are starting a NEW PROJECT. It’s time for the TITLE and AUTHOR NAME. It also asks what you wish to do with your project. Most people want to sell their books and this is the recommended route to take. After your choices are made click save and continue.
Next you get to choose your ISBN for your book. You can pick the FREE LULU ISBN which can only be used on books you distribute via LULU.
If you are uploading to another site, it is likely they will offer their own FREE ISBN. If you have already purchased a set of ISBN then use them. There is a link on the below image on how to purchase your own numbers.
If you don’t wish to use an ISBN then you WON’T be able to distribute through LULU retail channels.
Below is shows the FREE ISBNfor my book which they will email to me. Since you haven’t yet uploaded your manuscript, now is the time to add the ISBN to your copyright page and save it again.
DO NOT UPLOAD YOUR MANUSCRIPT UNTIL YOU HAVE SET UP YOUR CHAPTER HEADINGS IN ACCORDANCE WITH LULU RULES. YOU CAN ALSO DELETE YOUR CONTENTS PAGE HYPERLINKS…LULU WILL MAKE THIS FOR YOU.
Choose you manuscript and upload. You will see the BAR below turn and orange-yellow.
Once it has uploaded it will show the document as below. If you have to make amendments later make sure you delete this file first on theX
Remember back to when you organised the HEADINGS in your manuscript. Well this is what LULU do. They show you the list for your contents table which you can adjust by changing the headings. When you do the HEADINGS you can use HEADING 1 – 3 ONLY You will also need to change the style to what you wish to see, making sure you embed the fonts as well.
Most Authors will also have their own BOOK COVERS by this stage in the process. If you do then you will need to upload the cover during this next stage. Having your own BOOK COVER means you can use any Theme, they are technically irrelevant though you still need to choose one. As you can see I stayed with the gold one with my name in the bottom right corner.
Click onto Backgrounds & Pictures. You can see where you can change the colour and edit the image. If you have a BOOK COVER already made you will need to EDIT the IMAGE. If you need to build your own you can ask for professional help from a LULUCover Designer.
Once again LULU have a criteria for the BOOK COVER. This is where you will USE A DIFFERENT FILE – as shown below. Or you can accept this image and proceed to building your own cover.
Since you have clicked‘Use a different file’this new box will appear asking you to either upload your cover from your computer or browse the LULU GALLERY. When you upload your own file make sure the sizing is correct or….
Before the ‘OR’ The file will upload the same way as the manuscript did…One the bar has finished loading you will be asked to ACCEPT or TRY AGAIN due to sizing requirements.
As show here…The first time I uploaded my BOOK COVER the requirements weren’t met, meaning they rejected my file asking me to alter it and upload it again.
Once the BOOK COVER file meets their criteria you will see the image – like shown below. Now you can ACCEPT the file and move on to the next stage.
Now you can see your cover you will need to click on TEXT. If you have a ready-made cover you will need to take out the TITLE and AUTHOR information as shown below.
If you have built your cover here then you can now edit your TITLE & AUTHOR name, give them the font, size and colour you wish them to have.
Once you have done, click SAVE and CONTINUE to go to the next stage.
You’ve nearly finished now.Unlike Kindle, Createspace & Draft to Digitalwhere you describe your project at the beginning. With LULU you do this towards the end
Fill in the blanks. On my children’s book this is what I choose to go with. You can change this at any stage.
My children’s story is all about adventures in the Insect world in a Country Garden. It is suitable for ages 3 upwards though parents, grandparents, siblings etc would need to read to the younger children.
Fill in the description which you would usually find on the back of a PRINT Book. This will show on your AUTHOR PAGE and in the LULU Shop. I choose the Standard Copyright License though there are quite a few you can look through and choose from.
YES YOU MADE IT…IT’S TIME TO REVIEW, DOWNLOAD THE INTERIOR, CHECK THE FORMATTING, SEE IF IT ALL WORKS CORRECTLY. IF NOT THEN YOU HAVE SOME WORK TO DO, OTHERWISE IT IS TIME TO PRICE YOUR BOOK
DISTRIBUTION TIME – PLEASE REMEMBER IF YOU HAVE UPLOADED YOUR EBOOK ELSEWHERE THEN UN-TICK IT HERE. ALSO REMEMBER YOU CAN GET YOUR BOOKS DISTRIBUTED VIA INGRAM SPARK WITH LULU
Make sure your LULU website is in the country where you live. Then pick the price and how much royalty you wish to make. Tick the boxes you need and hit REVIEW PROJECT.
Next is the eBook Distribution Terms and Condition. Read them and ACCEPT if you wish to publish.
The next slide shows your REVENUE excl taxes. Once you are satisfied you have what you wish go to the last TAB – SAVE and FINISH.
CONGRATULATIONS YOU HAVE PUBLISHED
This is all from me for now. I hope it helps. I will be making a post on how the HEADINGS work next week. Meanwhile enjoy the read and please SHARE.
Bashed after professional editing and no it wasn’t by my excellant Editor. It seems to get a book into a bookstore your book has to be perfect if you are an Indie Author – never mind the bloody Traditional Published books which nearly always have one or two errors in them. The Bookstore owners sure as hell aren’t going to read them just to point out errors otherwise they’d not have a business.
I am sick of it. No only is spelling and grammar different in each English speaking country, you then have to fight for the right to sell them locally. Online it is fine, if someone points out an error you fix it and re-publish, be it print or eBook.
I do wish New Zealand would catch up with the rest of the world with Independently Published books and give them a chance. Personally if I ever won lotto or inherited a fortune I would open an Indie Book Store with a Coffee Shop. If only…
It isn’t that I think we should be lazy with our editing at all. It should be top rate, as good as you can afford. It also needs Beta Readers, Proof Readers, Line Editor and so on. If you know someone you can exchange services with etc then go for it. Writing sure as hell isn’t a cheap business. Even with all the above errors will still find a way in…You could edit for years and never publish at all I suppose.
Anyway I was given a helping hand and a possible solution to help tighten up my books with editing which includes my lovely editors. It was Thanks toA L Mengelwho I chatted to earlier this evening for ideas and ways to improve my own books. Here is what he told me.
I practice several rounds of edits. The first round,is the story structure, I do myself. Someone has to turn the draft into a flowing story, and the author really needs to do that.
After that, I send it out for a read through for flow and consistency
Then more edits are made.
Next is another set of eyes for line edits – Remember the first editor is already too familiar with the story. They may read over errors.
Then more edits are made again before it goes to the proofreader. Another set of eyes
The last step is the beta readers. They receive special copies which they read (usually 1-5 people) and if they see an error, they’re asked to record it.
That is where my conversation ended with Mr Mengel. There is one main thing I noted. He had different people doing different parts, making sure new eyes were looking over the book. It is this sort of journey which will give you and exceptional book in the end.