Many people have great ideas for writing an ebook, but have absolutely NO IDEA where to start. Here is your step by step guide to writing and publishing an ebook:
Step 1: Write the book.
I know this sounds like it would be obvious, but you would be surprised how many people never actually start writing their book because they aren't sure about the steps following the writing. If you are unsure how to start writing, read our post Just Start Writing. Once you have a written ebook to work with, publishing it is a lot easier!
Step 2: Pick a Great Title
It may seems reversed to pick your title after writing the book, but during the organization and writing of your ebook, the content can take a different direction than originally anticipated. This happens all the time and is normal. Picking a title at the end allows you to really get to nitty-gritty of the completed ebook. One thing to remember: because your book will be viewed on a tablet or e-reader, it's vitally important that your title grabs interest. The most successful ebooks have titles that tell the reader what the book can give them in the title. Such as "5 Ways to Make Money Blogging in 5 Days." (Not a real ebook of course, but I would buy it, wouldn't you?)
Step 3: Design a Cover
I can't stress enough the importance of having your cover professionally designed. Once again, someone browsing books on an e-reader is going to decide whether or not to read the information about your book by the title and by the cover of the book before they ever read a word of what the book is about. Find a reputable ebook cover designer either online, or from a personal recommendation and then don't settle. If you have to spend a little more money in the beginning to get the cover you want, DO IT. You will be happier with your product and it will sell significantly better in the end for the extra care you put into it.
Step 4: Have Your Ebook Digitized.
This is the step where you select a company to change your document into a usable digital format. Smashwords and CreateSpace are well known websites that can do this for you. Do your research here and make sure that the website you choose for this project fits into your overall publishing plan, not only for this book, but your future work.
Like I said...easy as 1,2,3. Let me be your cheerleader for a moment: YOU CAN DO IT! Really, you can. The hardest part is getting started, but remember, you have something to say and now, with ebooks, you have a forum for it.
Once this your book is ready to sell, it's time to think about marketing, promoting and selling your ebook...but, that's for a future post. Stay tuned...
Do you have questions about ebooks? We'd love to answer them!