Thanks for this great question, Clara. There is a lot that goes into it. On the plus side, it’s getting easier all the time. Here is a big-picture checklist.
- Get your book designed
- Format your book for print and ebook
- Properly launch your book at time of publication
- Publish to paperback
- Publish to ebook
Get Your Book Designed
- Get your cover designed.
- Find a great book cover designer for this.
- Get your frontispiece designed (this is the graphic that comes before the title page)
- Your book cover designer can help with this.
- Write your book’s front matter and back matter
- Select your fonts. Resources include:
- Pick a page design. Resources include:
- A great site for finding editors and designers:
Format Your Book for Print and eBook
There are many professionals who can handle this for you. However, if you prefer to handle it yourself (as I do):
- Get your book into an MS Word or InDesign file that contains all of the items in the “Get Your Book Designed” section of this post.
- Export as PDF
- There are great applications for this, including InDesign, Jutoh, Calibre, etc. They come with a steep learning curve, but they do an excellent job.
A middle ground between hiring a professional and doing it yourself, is to use a template. Paste your text into the template and the template handles the font and page design tasks.
One of the best-known people in this regard is Joel Friedlander at thebookdesigner.com. He provides templates that handle the non-creative (i.e. not writing or cover design) tasks listed in the “Get Your Book Designed” and “Format Your Book for Print and E-Book” sections in this post, including exporting to ebook format. I used one of his templates for my novel, Conquest.
Properly Launch Your Book at Time of Publication
This is very important. The time immediately before your book is published is very special for marketing purposes, because that is the time when you can say to the world that something new is on the way. Resources include:
Publish to Paperback
Upload your PDF to one of the following services to have paper copies of your book printed and ready to sell:
Publish to eBook
Your ebook can be published and sold via:
Some articles comparing these services are provided by:
I hope this has been helpful.