I just self-published a novel through https://www.draft2digital.com/. (ebook only.)
The process, which in and of itself was a piece of cake, took me a half-dozen tries to get the format right (downloaded from GDocs as a .docx) to make the title and copyright and all that work out correctly. D2D then gave me a 6×9 (or any other size) PDF that I took over to https://www.thebookpatch.com/ (A POD service.)
There I fetched the cover template and built my own cover in Photoshop. With the JPG and PDF in hand, I uploaded both, proofed both and voila’, I was done. I ordered 5 copies at $8.50 apiece, and I had them delivered within about 10 days.
Bing, bang, boom – done. I never thought this was gonna be easy.
But it was.
- So, yeah, it IS easy. Mostly. The writing and editing were by far the hardest part.
- Your Microsoft Word version of your manuscript is the key to a good looking eBook and PDF for print version. Perfecting this takes time and effort and, well, you just have to beat it with a big stick until it complies with your wishes.
- Draft2Digital will create a POD (print on demand) version of your book — all ready-made for you to take over to a POD site like TheBookPatch.
- Now, D2D’s PDF is not “perfect.” It’s good, mind you, but you can’t control the leading, or font size. So, you get what you get. However, you can republish (within minutes) again and again and, until they DO provide better control of the POD PDFs, well, you’re stuck.
- TheBookPatch didn’t quite represent the page count accurately. What I thought was X pages turned out be be X-60 pages which changes the dynamics of the book spine width. This is important because your homemade image MUST fit your book’s final dimensions. (I’ve subsequently fixed this…) Note: I was able to upload new text and new cover images — without a hick-up. Easy-peasy.
- The cover image was ME, ME, ME.
- I drew and colored the crappy sailboat and sailor (20×30 drafting paper).
- I took it out back and put boards and some odd cable around it and took a picture with my phone (ayup, an old android phone).
- Then I drew a frickin’ map — took a picture of that and Photoshopped the hell out of that puppy.
- I also took a selfie with the same phone and used that as my “I’m special — look at me” image on the back.
- Here’s the final cover… Nice huh?!
Will I do this again? You betcha!
Should you? You bet you! Write something, anything. Get it edited (as best you can) and publish that gorgeous work of narrative art!
The BookPatch link:
Here’s some miscellaneous videos that I found to help, in general. (Nothing to do with the above process…)
Self publishing tips ‘n tricks:
Ray Bradbury on Madmen: