Ebook Retailers Grade for Upload Process

report cardJust finished an update to stay current with the e-publishing industry (not an easy task), then went to the sales venues to submit ebooks and paperbacks. Here’s the graded list in order of most efficient and user-friendly IMO to the least:

1. Amazon KDP. A+, love the subtle changes to their preview mode, still with the ability to both download the converted document or to view the newly enhanced on-screen version with Kindle options and working hyperlinks–very nice and fast. Available in the Kindle store in about 6 hours. This company has always done the most to sell ebooks and help me do it.

2. CreateSpace. A , the interior digital proof and final proof including cover design are miles better than years past. I love this company for paperbacks. Proofs went through in about 12 hours online and a physical copy delivered to my door in 3 days at the slowest shipping speed (because I chose to order a copy). Used to take a week. Fine quality and price is fantastic, can’t be beat by LightningSource or Lulu. Only wish they did more to proof the cover design online before submitting and perhaps add interior template options.

3. Smashwords. A-, some of this is my familiarity and loyalty but they still do a great job and give LOADS of advice on self-publishing. I wish approval times were faster for Premium Status, but it has sped up to around 24-48 hours compared to several days in the past. Also it can be a grizzly bear passing meat-grinder for newbies, but indies should learn proper formatting. SW is doing everyone a service by keeping formatting standards high.

4. Kobo. B, they have a great way of handling uploads for cover, description and content, but their Previewer needs work to get past the B grade. Don’t like the required download to view on Calibre or some other method–Kobo, keep up with the others and create an online Previewer. Props to them for more monthly sales than B & N, a pleasant surprise.

5. NookPress. B-, my first time uploading since the change from Pubit. Definite improvements with the ability to edit within their system and working links in Preview mode and an improved online Previewer. Still not as sweet as the way Amazon handles TOC but getting better. Needs improvements with the Editorial Review department, couldn’t get that to work right or to just delete it altogether. Now if they could fix their Nook Store search engine and get sales going (a long story), which is still affecting their overall grade.

6. Draft2Digital C+ My first experience with them and mixed feelings. Love how they’re attempting to simplify approval for authors without formatting experience, but does it currently come at a cost to those of us with experience? Maybe, maybe not. I’m only distributing to Apple through them and have been watching my book in Publishing status for a week now, assuming it will be distributed to iTunes soon. Excited for the promise of “real time” sales reports. Jury still out on this company but since they’re new, that’s understandable. Wishing them the best.

Besides the biggies, I upload to my own websites for direct sales (pdf, epub, mobi) and give that an A+ at both Webs and Yola. So easy and nice to sell books via PayPal.

I may update the samples at Scribd and other venues but doubt to upload again to Google Ebooks-Partners-Play, not even sure what they’re calling it theses days.

Your thoughts?

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Draft2Digital Formatting Improvements

draft2digitalThe jury is still out (my own private jury) on this ebooks distributor, Draft2Digital. Their M.O. is noteworthy–trying to offer the best of what Smashwords does as in distribution to retailers while eliminating the worst of the Smashwords experience as in formatting hoops, delays and formatting hoops. Follow-up to a recent blog post on Draft2Digital–this email below just came on recent improvements:

As many of you are aware, we provide a free formatting and conversion service for your Word documents. Thanks to our beta testers, we have made many improvements to this system over the last several months. Most of these changes have been minor and released as they were completed, but starting today you’ll see this as well:

  • Preserve Scene Break Symbols – We now preserve the symbols you use for scene breaks while still recognizing that it is a scene break.
  • First Line Indent – We no longer indent the first line of a new chapter or scene in accordance with industry standards.
  • Whitespace Scene Breaks – Whitespace scene breaks are now smaller and can be used in places where a small amount of whitespace is desired.
  • User Provided Table of Contents – We can now use an embedded, linked table of contents to detect your chapters. We still do not require a ToC and will generate one for you, but some authors prefer their own.

Note: None of your existing projects will be updated to use this new styling unless you “Save & Continue” on the Acquisitions step of your book. As always, we strongly encourage that you preview any book that you make changes to before approving them for distribution.

We have also made some other changes you might be interested in:

  • CreateSpace Formatting – We have made major improvements to our CreateSpace formatting. Please take a look and tell us what you think!
  • User Provided Epub Repair – We now repair many more common user-provided ePub errors caused by many popular ePub creation programs.

We always welcome your feedback, criticism, and suggestions.

Sincerely,
Kris Austin
President and CEO
Draft2Digital, LLC

Makes me wonder how well those documents look after their conversion process. I actually haven’t checked, have you? Mine are probably fine because I learned proper formatting from Smashwords. Yours? Sounds like everyone might want to inspect that D2D ebook they sell on iTunes.

How has your experience with D2D been? Jury still out? Leave a comment.


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Michele J. Rolle Invisible Warrior

Indie Authors TV welcomes Michele J. Rolle, author of Invisible Warrior, a memoir on growing up in a failed New York City housing project, escaping poverty, harsh conditions, and finding the light at the end of the tunnel. Hosted by Jason Matthews and Marla Miller.

Amazon author pages:
http://www.amazon.com/Invisible-Warrior-A-Memoir-ebook/dp/B0095YE8DW
http://www.amazon.com/Jason-Matthews/e/B004A8W4BG/
http://www.amazon.com/Marla-Miller/e/B000APJYSE/

Websites:
http://www.invisiblewarrior.net
https://ebooksuccess4free.wordpress.com
http://marlamiller.com/

G+ Pages:
Michele J. Rolle – https://plus.google.com/105359305997611846672/posts
Jason Matthews — https://plus.google.com/117850331447734054313/posts
Marla Miller — https://plus.google.com/104880672110890238358/posts

Add a comment?

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Monte Schulz Inheritor Santa Barbara Writers Conference

Indie Authors TV welcomes Monte Schulz, inheritor of the Santa Barbara Writers Conference, the greatest gathering of writers in the world. Hosted by Jason Matthews and Marla Miller.

Amazon author pages:
http://www.amazon.com/Monte-Schulz/e/B001HP1YM0/
http://www.amazon.com/Jason-Matthews/e/B004A8W4BG/
http://www.amazon.com/Marla-Miller/e/B000APJYSE/

Websites:
http://www.monteschulz.com/
http://your-own-free-website.com/
http://marlamiller.com/

G+ Pages:
Monte Schulz — https://plus.google.com/118329978196365087923/posts
Jason Matthews — https://plus.google.com/117850331447734054313/posts
Marla Miller — https://plus.google.com/104880672110890238358/posts

Add a comment?

Home page of How to Make, Market and Sell Ebooks.
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Indie Authors with Book Video Trailers?

Are you an Indie Author with a book video trailer? Want to be featured in a blog post and YouTube video about the process? If so, we’re planning an upcoming feature on this blog and my YouTube channel and are currently accepting submissions, which can be left in the comments below. The judge’s picks will get featured in the future, but all can be seen below in the comments. Here’s what we need from you:

1. Link to the YouTube book video trailer–just copy and paste the YouTube URL in your comment and it will post below

2. Brief description of how it was made (who made it and what programs)

3. Cost range: free – under $100 – under $300 – under $500 – more than that

4. Do you believe it has sold books? Was it worth it?

5. Advice for authors making one

Space is limited for the judge’s picks in the future, but all relevant videos will be published below in the comments. Here’s an example:

Would you like to comment?


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