Someone asked me what my preferred platforms were for print and ebook publishing and why. The details have updated since the last time I blogged this, so here’s the current advice:
Lulu – have used but not since 2009 or so. LOTS of complaints. Do not recommend.
- Avoid Lulu.
- Set up a CreateSpace book using their free ISBN. Sell the CS book on Amazon (you’ll make a higher profit margin if you use CS than IS).
- Set up an Ingram Spark book using lessons learned on the CS book in order to prevent a fee train wreck. You can use the same file if you do PDF/X-1a on your file setups of both covers and interiors.
- Amazon (.mobi files).
- Kobo (.epub) – note: if you use Kobo directly, ask me about the promo list
- Draft2Digital (.epub) – note: you can flow to Kobo via D2D, but you can’t access the promo list if so, and the promo list can be very valuable
- Smashwords is probably not worth the time, unless you want to go REALLY wide.
- DriveThruFiction is a sister site of DriveThruRPG, which I don’t use but if you write fiction that gamers would tend to like it might be a good place.
- Some people use carefully formatted .doc files. There are usually minor formatting issues, no matter how perfectly you follow the directions, especially with Amazon.
- People with Macs recommend Vellum. I don’t have a Mac and can’t speak to it.
- The most recent versions of InDesign have an export function. I don’t have a recent version of ID and can’t speak to it.
- Scrivner has an export function. I don’t have Scrivner and can’t speak to it.
- I build an HTML file using a template, then convert to epub/mobi. I use Calibre for the conversion, but I should probably switch over to building my own files at some point. I haven’t yet.
- I have had to rebuild files for other clients because they converted using InDesign, due to InDesign introducing too many errors in the converted ebook. But it’s been a while.
- If you want to see the HTML file building/conversion process, I highly recommend BB eBooks. <3 <3 <3
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