Blog to Book Project — Uploading your Paperback Manuscript to KDP

We’ve already talked about Kindle Direct Publishing and ebooks. Today we are going to look at creating a paperback print book with KDP.  This time, after you log in to KDP, choose + Paperback under Create a New Title. 

Paperback Book Details

The first section is identitical to how to set up your ebook.

Language

Choose the language your book is written in.

Book Title

Type in the book title and subtitle if you have one.

Series

If your book is part of a series, you’ll enter that information in this section

Edition Number

If you are creating a new edition of a book, you would include that information next.

Author

Add your name as the Author as you wish it to appear.

Contributors

Then list any contributors you would like to appear in your title and on the cover. This is a little different than your contributors’ page in the book itself.

Description

Your book description should be a short blurb intended to get people interested in your book. When this is displayed on the book page on Amazon, only the first few lines will be visible without having to click on Read more, so you’ll want to concentrate on making the introduction reader worthy.

Publishing Rights

The next category is Publishing Rights. As this is a Blog to Book Project, you will choose “ I own the copyright and I hold the necessary publishing rights.” Unless you take your blog posts down before uploading your manuscript, you may get a notification from Amazon saying that the content of your book is already freely available on the web. That’s perfectly fine. You just have to resubmit the manuscript verifying that you are the author of those freely available posts.

Keywords

You should spend some time listing the most relevant keywords next. Amazon gives some great tips for choosing the best keywords here. In general, you want to pick keywords that a reader might use to find your book’s topic. So if you write about zebras bred in captivity you might include zebra, zebras in zoos, zebra babies, animals bred in captivity, zoo babies and so on. Doing searches on Amazon for books similar to your own will also help you decide which keywords will get you the most readers.

Categories

You can choose two categories to help classify your book. Spend some time looking through the lists. Do another search and see what categories those books that are like yours are using. Try to be as specific as possible. Nonfiction > Self-Help > Death, Grief, Bereavement is more specific than just Nonfiction and a better category for your book about how you coped with the loss of your beloved pet.

Age and Grade Range

If you like, you can choose an age or grade range. Doing so is completely optional, but if you think it would help readers find your book, certainly do so. If you aren’t sure about the grade range, remember Hemminway will give you an approximate level for free.

Pre-Order

The last section on this page is to choose whether your book is ready for publishing or if you would like to generate some pre-order publicity hype first. It’s entirely up to you. Then choose Save and Continue to move along to the next step.

Once the new page opens up, you’ll see a check mark next to the work Complete if you have correctly added all the required fields.

Paperback Book Content

Print ISBN

You can get a free ISBN from Kindle or if you have one already, you can enter the information here. All print books must have an ISBN.

Publication Date

If this is the first time you are publishing your book, don’t enter any dates here. KDP will use the date that your book is for sale on Amazon. If you are printing a second or third edition of a book, then you would enter the first edition publication date.

Print Options

Interior & paper type

You can choose black and white interior with cream or white paper or color interior with white paper. Bear in mind that color will substantially increase the cost of your book.

Trim Size

The most common trim size is 6 x 9 inches. There may be reasons why you choose another size though. For instance, my One Year Blogging Planner has large spaces to write information and monthly calendars, so I choose the 8×11 inch size. Choosing a different size may restrict where your book can be sold. With the 8 x 11 inch size I can not sell my planner in countries outside of the U.S.  

Bleed Settings

Books with bleed have images that extend to the edge of the page past the margins. If you really must have images like that requires some more advanced formatting efforts. KDP provides a free book dimension calculator to help you.

Paperback cover finish

You can choose either a matte or glossy finish for your book cover.

Manuscript

If you are sure you’ve done all the formatting correctly and have your book saved in one of these formats (.doc, .docx, HTML, RTF, and PDF) you can upload it now. You can also use a KDP template.

Book Cover

You can make your own book cover, use a KDP template or use Cover Creator.  Make sure to include all the essential book cover components we’ve talked about. Your book will be printed in full-color unless you choose to use a black and white design.   

Book Preview

Check through your book using the book previewer. If you would rather not use the online version, you can download a PDF version.

Save and Continue.

Paperback Book Rights & Pricing

This section is considerably smaller than the ebook Rights and Pricing section.

Territories

Again, since this a compilation of your blog posts and you hold copyrights, you can choose All territories (worldwide rights).

Pricing & Royalty

KDP offers a choice of 60% or 40% royalty percentage for print books and gives you a minimum – maximum price range. You can see how much KDP charges for printing your book. Books printed in color are more expensive to print than black and white books. You can read about paperback royalty and KDP here. If you would like to change the prices of any individual marketplaces, you can do so at this point.

Terms & Conditions

If everything looks good after reading the terms and conditions, you can go ahead and click Publish Your Paperback book.

Proof Copies

You can request proof copies of a paperback book. These will have a gray bar across the cover indicating it is a proof copy, not for resale, and not have an ISBN code on the back. Other than that, the book will be exactly what your printed book will look like.

You’ll receive a notification that your book is undergoing review and another email if there is something that needs to be fixed or that the book is available for purchase. You did it!

Assignment:

Upload your manuscript to KDP and publish your paperback book.


Blog to Book Project — KDP Select

Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) has several optional components you should know a little about before deciding yeah or nay. One of these is enrollment in Kindle Select.

Kindle Select is only for your digital books, not your print books. If you enroll, you earn a percentage of the KDP Select Global Fund for pages that are read either through Kindle Unlimited (KU) or Kindle Owners’ Lending Library (KOLL). Enrollment gets your book in the KU or KOLL library so that readers can choose to read it with their paid subscription. If you don’t enroll, your book isn’t in the list and readers who use KU or KOLL won’t have access to it.

You also can earn the maximum 70% royalty rate for sales in Japan, India, Brazil and Mexico rather than the customary 35% rate. Since my books are about Mexico, geared to those living in Mexico, this is an attractive option.

Through Kindle Select you can also use some nifty promotional tools. The Kindle Countdown Deal will discount your book for a period of time. This discount is only available to books for sale on the UK or US Amazon site. You still earn your 70% royalty rating on the discounted price. There’s a dedicated page on Amazon called Kindle Countdown Deals which the savvy book reader will have bookmarked, leading to more sales of your book.

The way the countdown deal works is you can reduce your book price, then each day the price gets just a little higher, until it returns to the regular list price again on the fourth day. So if you discount your book to 99 cents the first day, the second day it will be $1.99. The third day it will be $2.99 before returning to the list price of $6.99.  

The Free Book Promotion will allow you to offer your book FREE (hence the name) worldwide for 5 days each 90-day enrollment period. You can run the promotion 5 days in a row or you can pick individual days during the 3-month period. While this is a great publicity tool, you won’t earn any royalties on any free downloads. If your book gets a large number of downloads, it just might be listed on the Amazon Best Sellers Top 100 Free list.

Both promotions will certainly help get your book in the public eye. You can’t run both promotions at the same time though.

Here’s the fine print. If you enroll your digital book in Kindle Select you can not make your book available on any other platform, including your blog, website, or other publishing sites. You can make up to 10% of an enrolled book available as a “sample” on your blog or provide reviewers and editors a digital copy.

Your enrollment in Kindle Select will automatically renew after 90 days. Therefore, if you do not wish to continue with the service, you need to uncheck the automatic renewal box on your bookshelf on KDP. You can re-enroll at any time.

Blog to Book Project — KDP

Kindle Direct Publishing for eBooks

I have used Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) for all my books. There are other self-publishing sites out there which may be just as good, however, I am not as familiar with the process and you would do better to get information from an author who has used those publishing sites.

With KDP you can publish an ebook or print book to Amazon in under an hour, depending on the number formatting errors you have. And, if you edit or add sections to your book, all you have to do is upload the manuscript again.

So here’s how it works. You can sign in with your Amazon account here. You do have an Amazon account, don’t you? That will take you to your bookshelf. You’ll see a section that says Create a New Title. I always create my ebook version first because I find there fewer formatting errors for me to fix.

Ebook Book Details

Language

Choose the language your book is written in.

Book Title

Type in the book title and subtitle if you have one.

Series

If your book is part of a series, you’ll enter that information in this section

Edition Number

If you are creating a new edition of a book, you would include that information next.

Author

Add your name as the Author as you wish it to appear.

Contributors

Then list any contributors you would like to appear in your title and on the cover. This is a little different than your contributors’ page in the book itself.

Description

Your book description should be a short blurb intended to get people interested in your book. When this is displayed on the book page on Amazon, only the first few lines will be visible without having to click on Read more, so you’ll want to concentrate on making the introduction reader worthy.

Publishing Rights

The next category is Publishing Rights. As this is a Blog to Book Project, you will choose “ I own the copyright and I hold the necessary publishing rights.” Unless you take your blog posts down before uploading your manuscript, you may get a notification from Amazon saying that the content of your book is already freely available on the web. That’s perfectly fine. You just have to resubmit the manuscript verifying that you are the author of those freely available posts.

Keywords

You should spend some time listing the most relevant keywords next. Amazon gives some great tips for choosing the best keywords here. In general, you want to pick keywords that a reader might use to find your book’s topic. So if you write about zebras bred in captivity you might include zebra, zebras in zoos, zebra babies, animals bred in captivity, zoo babies and so on. Doing searches on Amazon for books similar to your own will also help you decide which keywords will get you the most readers.

Categories

You can choose two categories to help classify your book. Spend some time looking through the lists. Do another search and see what categories those books that are like yours are using. Try to be as specific as possible. Nonfiction > Self-Help > Death, Grief, Bereavement is more specific than just Nonfiction and a better category for your book about how you coped with the loss of your beloved pet.

Age and Grade Range

If you like, you can choose an age or grade range. Doing so is completely optional, but if you think it would help readers find your book, certainly do so. If you aren’t sure about the grade range, remember Hemminway will give you an approximate level for free.

Pre-Order

The last section on this page is to choose whether your book is ready for publishing or if you would like to generate some pre-order publicity hype first. It’s entirely up to you. Then choose Save and Continue to move along to the next step.

Once the new page opens up, you’ll see a check mark next to the work Complete if you have correctly added all the required fields.

Ebook Content

Digital Rights Management (DRM)

Digital Rights Management restricts readers from giving their copy of your ebook to someone else. Enabling it doesn’t prohibit someone from lending your ebook to another person for a short period of time or giving a copy of your ebook to someone else as a gift after purchasing.

Upload Ebook Manuscript

If you are sure you’ve done all the formatting correctly and have your ebook saved in one of these formats (.doc, .docx, HTML, MOBI, ePub, RTF, Plain Text, and KPF.) you can upload your ebook now. You can also download Kindle Create to format your book correctly. Doing so might save you some time and frustration in the long run because you just can’t publish until the formatting it right.

Amazon will also do a spell check for you. Since I use a number of Mexican Spanish words in some of my books, sometimes these words get highlighted as misspelled when they aren’t. It doesn’t hurt to double check the words Amazon finds because I guarantee you that no matter how many times you have proofread your manuscript, there are always a few that escape notice.

Kindle eBook Cover

If you have a cover design already, you can upload it at this point. I always use Cover Creator because tech savvy I am not. As we talked about in Judge Your Cover, the options are limited but you are assured that everything is the proper formatting size.

Kindle eBook Preview

Even if you think everything is good to go, you can not continue until you preview your cover and manuscript. There may be image issues, or you may find that one page has a huge amount of white space or some other issue. Amazon highlights certain issues for you to check, does some fiddling with a few things to help you out, but you should go page by page and check how your book looks on a tablet, phone or e-reader.

Kindle eBook ISBN

Kindle eBooks are not required to have an ISBN but if you have one, you can enter it here.

Save and Continue.

Kindle eBook Pricing

KDP Select Enrollment

You can enroll at KDP Select in the first section if you like. Benefits include being able to promote your book with free book promotions or countdown promotions. Drawbacks include not being able to publish your book at any other sites while it is enrolled.

Territories

Since you are publishing your blog posts in book form and you hold the copyrights to them, you can choose All Territories (worldwide rights).

Royalty and Pricing

KDP Pricing Support (Beta) will give you an idea of what to charge for your ebook based on the prices of books similar to yours. You can use the figure Amazon provides (they generally know what they are talking about) or you can choose another price.

You can choose either 35% or 70% royalty commission percentage. Based on which you choose, Amazon will give you a minimum-maximum price range for you to select from. You can change the prices in other marketplaces either higher or lower if you like.

Matchbook

If you’d like to offer your ebook for free or at a reduced price to people who buy your print book, you can enroll it in Kindle Matchbook. It’s optional.

Book Lending

If you would like to allow your readers to lend a book to someone else after purchasing it for 14 days, you can enroll in book lending.

Terms & Conditions

If everything looks good after reading the terms and conditions, you can go ahead and click Publish Your Kindle Ebook.

You’ll receive a notification that your book is undergoing review and another email if there is something that needs to be fixed or that the book is available for purchase. You did it!

Assignment:

Upload and publish your ebook using KDP.