01 02 03 Amorina Rose Writes: Publishing EBooks – what exactly does it all mean? I need help! 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Publishing EBooks – what exactly does it all mean? I need help!


29th November 2015
I am dangerous when I go reading as it either teaches me something knew or terrifies so much I want to go into hibernation forever.  However lately it feels like circumstances are really pushing for self-publishing.  EBooks seems to be the best course of action.  Therefore a better understanding is necessary.  Then, if the traditional book stills calls to you and it will we can look to using the printing on demand method and get the best of both worlds.  Is all this sounding confusing?  It’s actually not and I say this with surprise.  It is about making the choice and doing what needs to be done. I am pretty sure my choice is made. Hence I am reading again.  This time it is an article by Laurel Cohn. I have summarised and commented but going to the direct source is always better and her website is really interesting. 
            Firstly the discussion as to whether eBooks are here to stay needs to be addressed as it is still something many question.  I do understand this for mixed reasons. I love books.  I love the feel of them, that breathy sigh when we turn the last page and the way they look in the bookcase. It is hard to let go of this. The truth is though that stats are showing that there is a rise in both publishing and purchasing.  I know this on a personal level as I am rarely without my Kindle.  Why would I be when it means I can carry a thousand books around with me in my handbag? Goodbye boring wait at the doctor’s office, the dentist and the long trip on the jet plane. The best part is (yes there is more) that I can adjust font to suit these aging eyes.  EBooks are calling so I have to gather as much information as I can.

Laurel provides some handy hints and straight away I am made aware of two important points if I am to publish this way.  As a reader playing with font is fine but as a writer we need to understand a few things.  One is that illustrations don’t work well.  I am currently working on a poetry anthology and had added some images only to find out my choices did not translate well at all and had to abandon the idea at least for now. I wish I had read this article before I spent hours perusing images. Secondly and equally as important is understanding formats because if the reader changes page size proportions change.  If your format is not suitable you need to know before publishing to avoid problems.  Laurel talks about PDF and the EPUB, the official standard of the International Digital Publishing Forum.  To give you an idea of why we need to know this kind of information – uploading to Amazon (kindle e-readers) requires a format called MOBI and without software to convert the EPUB prepared book there would be no uploading.
Some tips or ideas are a given and are easy to take into account or rather should be. For instance, ensuring your manuscript is a high standard.  Editing is super important whatever the publishing medium as is specific design considerations for an eBookConversions to EPUB need to be verified before being accepted by online distributors and retailers.  Equally important is a good cover so deciding whether to employ someone is a big decision when funds are not there.  Funds can only come from sales so distribution needs to be given a lot of thought.  We as a group are looking at using our website but there are also online distributors, such as BookBaby or Smashwords. Laurel warns us that we need to be” aware of tax implications if your distributor is based in another country”.Writers think finishing their work is the hard part.  I guess not which is why we are eternally grateful for organisations like (www.asauthors.org) and (www.australiacouncil.gov.au/writersguide/, and to people like Laurel Cohn who take the time to explain.  She offers much, nuch more but I will let you read it for yourself by following the link:  www.laurelcohn.com.au 
      For now however I am feeling less nervous about the whole process.  I want to be a writer and so I have to allow for confusion, insecurity and a certain amount of naivety.  I am a baby who has only just discovered she can actually crawl.  I am going to give myself a break as I figure out how to stand up and walk.  Once I have that sorted I will think about running.

A piu presto


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