This article also appears in the premiere issue of the ePublish Yourself! e-zine, available on ISSUU (free for a short period).Amazon Kindle Logo

Your goal, as an indie-author and publisher, should be to make your work available in as many markets and formats as feasible. This is especially true if your book is primarily text- based, as is typically the case with novels and general how- to guides (since these types of ebooks are comparatively easy to format and produce well).

Having said that, where should an indie-author start? Most experts would likely agree that the best place to launch is in the bookstore. Not only does Amazon feature the largest ebookstore in the world (two million ebooks and counting), but the process of producing and publishing your first ebook is simple and streamlined.

In addition, as an early leader, Amazon has set a number of standards including easy access to international markets, high royalty rates, the chance to offer your book for free (for a set period) to entice new readers, and the ability to make your ebook available for lending. All told, Amazon is a great place to get your feet wet if you are looking to quickly get your book to market.

In this quick visual tutorial, we present the main steps to publishing your completed manuscript on Amazon. com. Some steps take mere moments to complete, others require careful consideration (such as previewing your Kindle-format ebook before submitting for publication). But overall, the process is amazingly straightforward allowing you to have your ebook on sale almost before you can say “New York Times Bestseller.”

Good luck!

Amazon KDP Select: Write Your Manuscript

1. Write your manuscript

You can use Microsoft Word, Apple Pages, Adobe InDesign, or Scrivener, among other programs. Be sure to use paragraph and character tags (a style sheet) to ensure consistent formatting and conversion.

Create your ebook file

2. Create your ebook file

Do you need extra control over the ebook formatting? If so, use Mobipocket Creator on your PC, available for free online. Otherwise, you can have Amazon automatically convert your word processing file.

Create an Amazon DTP account

3. Create an Amazon KDP account

If you already have an Amazon account, you can use that. However, you might want to create a new account if you plan to publish using a separate identity, such as an imprint or publisher name. Either way, it’s free.

Create an Amazon DTP account

4. Complete your account information

You need to specify publisher, tax, and bank account details (for royalty payments).

5. Add a new title to your bookshelf

Navigate to the Bookshelf and click the Add new title button.

KDP Select

6. Join KDP Select?

If you make your book exclusive to Kindle for 90 days, your book can join the Kindle Owner’s Lending Library (and be promoted as free for up to 5 days).

7. Enter the ebook details

You need to specify the title, edition, description, contributors, publishing rights, and categories.

8. Upload the cover and ebook files

You can choose to optionally enable Digital Rights Management (DRM), which is copy protection.

9. Preview your ebook

You can use either an online previewer or downloadable Kindle simulator. The downloadable previewer simulates Kindle E Ink, Kindle Fire, and iOS devices.

10. Specify the publishing territories

You need to specify the territories/countries for which you have publishing rights. For self-published work, you have rights to all territories.

11. Set the price and royalty rate

You can choose a 70% royalty rate if you price your book between $2.99 and $9.99. Pricing outside of this range involves a painful cut in royalties.

12. Publish your ebook

You can also save a draft and complete any of the steps later.
Congratulations, you’re now an epublished author! 

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