Yes, I Can

MY ENTRY INTO THE WORLD OF SELF-PUBLISHING

Cover SML

This little children’s book is the first project I’ve seen through from start (tentative pencil to paper) to finish (publishing and actually selling my first Kindle copy on Amazon). Yay!

In my new world of Creative self-employment, printing the book isn’t an immediate option. I need to do research about how and where to sell before I commit to printing 1000 copies. So self-publishing an e-book and being able to sell it on Amazon FOR FREE has been a great first step.

What an empowering process! Sometimes frustrating (as learning something new can be) but not as hard as I’d thought it would be. I had FUN and I learned a lot.

Here are the steps to my success:

Step 1: Accomplish the actual illustration work (I did the illustrations by hand)

Step 2: Create the digital version (I scanned in images and used Photoshop to do the page layouts, which I converted into PDFs). My advice is to get the page size right before starting the layout work. I found the following info online:

Page Dimensions
Device Aspect Ratio Landscape = width:height Portrait = height:width Screen Size (pixels)
Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″ 16:10 2560 x 1600
NOOK HD 16:10 1440 x 900
Kobo Arc7 HD 16:10 1920 x 1200
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 8″ 16:10 1280 x 800

As a newby to both e book creation and digital design, I tried hard to get my aspect ratio right but notice that the pages don’t quite fit when reading on my Samsung Galaxy tab (I end up with a white border). But it’s not bad at all.

Step 3 : Download KINDLE KIDS’ BOOK CREATOR and follow instructions. Note: there’s plenty for me still to learn about formatting  and adding reading features (e.g. Pop-Ups). I stuck to the basics for this first book and it turned out well.

Step 4: Head over to KINDLE DIRECT PUBLISHING and sign up (US tax number required). Then follow simple instructions to upload your book and HEY PRESTO, you are a self-published author with your book on the Amazon shelf!

My self-publishing ball is now officially and enthusiastically rolling! My next step is to figure out how to promote the book and get me some ROYALTIES!  Amazon offers a few marketing options. Otherwise, I know that there’s plenty of helpful advice online.

Main challenge is finding a market of children with devices for reading Kindle e books. Where I am in South Africa, hard copies of books are still the way to go. But thanks to Amazon, I now have a global market.

As to how the sales go, I’ll keep you posted!

Much love and creative juiciness,

Tatum

P.s. Here is the Amazon Store Link. I’d so appreciate you checking it out and letting me know what you think.

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