Earlier in the week, one of my new followers "Written Word" had asked me to speak about my experience publishing with Smashwords and if I have published with Amazon?
I thought that the question was one I should answer with a blog post, but I got so caught up in the tagging game it has taken until today to complete what I had started......so here goes!
Having a background of experience using 'Word,' I found it easy to type up my novel in the format needed by Smashwords using their 'Style Guide'. I followed the steps one at a time, very patiently, and within minutes after uploading my work, the 'meat grinder' accepted the file without any major problems!
My novel was almost imediately available on the Smashwords site for sale. It was then placed in a queue to be reviewed for what Smashwords call their 'Premium Catalogue!' Without any rejections, or compications, my work was soon distributed to Ebook Retailers (Apple, Barnes and Noble, Deisel, etc) for sale.
I also decided to publish a paperback version and after an intense research exercise, I decided to use Lulu.com as my publishing company, to print and distribute my book to interested parties! Lulu make one stipulation - you can only publish the particular type of book you choose to publish (paper back, hard cover, bound, etc) with them solely. To publish the same particular style with another publishing company there needs to be changes made to what has been written within the book.
Working out how to download the cover design to Lulu, was a little harder to do, as it turned out to be a somewhat complicated exercise, working out the correct cover sizes and file formats which Lulu required. It was a bit of a challenge at first, for my illustrator, but in the end she was able to produce a perfect copy.
When I was happy with the finished copy of the paperback, I visited my account on Lulu and went through the process for them to distribute my book using their Extended Reach Distribution package, which is free! The Extended Reach Distribution service distributes Lulu.com paperbacks / hard covers, etc., to global distributors such as Amazon.com.
If you want more markets covered you can purchase a package called 'Global Reach' which distributes your book with a number of retailer's such as: Barnes and Noble, Amazon and the Ingram Book Company which allows other book stores to purchase your book for sale in their book stores.
The Smashwords dashboard keeps me up to date with my sales immediately on their site and usually at least monthly from the other distributers, via email or access to my account through the dashboard on their site. Funds from sales are paid into my account every three months and documented spreadsheets of the account are accessible at any time through my Smashwords Dashboard.
I am able to organise coupons for cheaper prices or for free at anytime. I use these on my blog from time to time as gifts for blog hops I connect with. They are easy to set up and are simple to use through a designated coupon code controlled by a finish date.
Being an Indie writer/publisher means that I have total control. If I wish to pay a certain price I am able to distribute to a wider network, but I also have the power to pay nothing and still benefit from sales! The trick is to sell your work to the world using the global network with blood, sweat and tears!
Hope this answers your questons Written Word and if you are thinking of publishing as an Indie writer I would encourage you to do so! I forgot to mention an important fact, both of the publishing companies I have used do not hold copyright of my work, I am still the sole owner of my novel!