e-Publishing Services, Assistance and Advice
e-book conversion, marketing, distribution and sales
e-Publishing embraces a variety of non-printed solutions to getting your work published. As a publishing option, it is growing and gaining wider acceptance every day. There are a number of reasons for this: for the most part it is either free or highly affordable and also, open to everyone. It represents the future of publishing but not necessarily at the expense of other, more primitive forms (e.g. print).
First-time authors and independent publishers with limited resources can and do use e-publishing as a platform for getting their work published. Initially, it might just present an affordable means towards building an audience for your work, gain recognition as a writer, establish a reputation and so on. In time, it can be used to generate a reasonable and steady income from just a small financial outlay, without the associated risks of tying up money in stock, inventory, overheads in the form of storage, warehousing, distribution, etc. This is certainly a major attraction of the e-book as a publishing solution.
The key to success in this field really is to understand the medium. Those considering the e-publishing option need to acquaint themselves each of the four main elements of the process:
- Choosing a publishing platform
- Converting your manuscript to acceptable formats
- Designing a ‘cover’ for your e-book
- Sales and marketing
Choosing a Publishing Platform
Using both Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing and Smashwords, you can gain global distribution for your e-book titles, by making them available through all of the major online retailers and some minor ones as well (those in the latter category may have some niche interest and hence, should not be ignored). These include Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Smashwords, Scribd, among others. Your e-book will be formatted so that it can be read on virtually any e-reading device or app, including a smartphone, PC, laptop, etc.
ClickBank is publishing platform for information-based digital products (e-books effectively, formatted and outputted to PDF standard). Their global network of affiliate marketers assist in the process of distributing and disseminating your work across the worldwide web. Unlike Kindle and Smashwords, their platform is not entirely free to publish on (there is a small, once-off set-up fee), but affordable nevertheless. Their approach is particularly oriented to non-fiction works and How To … titles.
We can also help you to create your own publishing platform, marketing and selling your books through a dedicated author website – see our section on Managing Your Web Presence as an Author, Writer, Independent Publisher as well as the section to follow, on converting your manuscript to all of the common e-book formats.
In order to make your e-book readable on the all of the various e-reading devices and apps (Kindle, iTunes, Nook, your PC, laptop or tablet), you will need to be convert your manuscript to acceptable e-publishing formats.
The most commonly used format is e-pub, which is used on most of the commercially available e-reading devices and apps. Except, that is, for Kindle, which uses mobi as its format. Kindle is currently the most popular of the commercial e-book formats, in the sense of having the largest market share. Portable Document Format or PDF is another commonly used e-book format, readable on virtually any smartphone, PC, tablet or laptop. Adobe Reader is a popular reading device for PDFs that is also free.
At The Manuscript Publisher, we take care of your requirements in this area, converting your manuscript to all the common formats so that they may uploaded to publishing platforms that include Kindle Direct Publishing, Smashwords, ClickBank. We can also undertake the editing and proof-reading of the your manuscript, to prepare it for publication (see our section on Editorial Services). Our fees are based on the state of the manuscript when we receive it and the amount of work involved in getting it ready for publication.
e-Book ‘Cover’ Design
Designing a ‘cover’ for your e-book is not necessarily the same thing as designing a cover for a printed book. An e-book ‘cover’ has a much different function to the cover of its printed counterpart – a much simpler function but an important one nevertheless. You need to consider how your ‘book’ is going to come across in an online environment. Sometimes the visibility will be no more than thumbnail in size.
At The Manuscript Publisher, we offer cover design solutions that are professional, affordable and effective across both print and digital media. Designs can be template-based or bespoke and also adapted for print, if your intention is to bring out both a print and e-book edition (which in most cases, it should be – see Print vs Digital – which to choose? for some thoughts and considerations on this topic).
Sales and Marketing
Despite what you may have heard about the e-publishing phenomenon and the rise of the e-book market, the truth remains that a lot of e-books fail to sell in appreciable quantities. The reason for this often (but not always) comes down to marketing strategy – or lack on one. Our goal is to help you to understand how to to market and promote your book in an environment that is mainly but not exclusively online.
Sales of digital content in the form or e-books represent the fastest growing segment of the overall book trade. While many readers and book buyers have eagerly embraced the medium of the e-book, to the exclusion of printed matter, many have yet to do so. Some remain unconvinced while others will probably never be convinced. People who own e-readers tend to be among the most avid group of readers. Of course it is also worth remembering that people do not always buy books with the intention of reading them: e.g. books intended as gifts tend to be purchased in print format while children’s books or books that are heavily illustrated might be better suited to print also.
For more information about this topic, see our series of articles on e-Books and the Future of Publishing, which are available to read online from this website:
- Part iii: The Free and Open Form of Publishing. But is it the Future?
- Part ii: Changes in Reading Habits (and the way we read books)
- Part i: Implications for the Retail Trade in Books (and the way we buy books)
Our Catalogue of e-Books and Titles
e-Books published with the assistance of The Manuscript Publisher are available to browse and buy online from our portfolio and from our retail division at TMP Publications (print editions available too).
For assistance and advice on how to turn your manuscript into an e-book and take advantage of this market, talk to The Manuscript Publisher today. You can Contact Us by phone and by e-mail and you can even Get a Quote online.
Explore this website to discover our full range of assisted publishing services, which cover both print and digital. Download the free brochure, Publish, Promote and Sell Your Book the Modern, Professional and Affordable Way.