Publishing Your Christian Ebook
Ready to Epublish?
Okay, so your masterpiece is complete. You have written a Christian ebook. You want readers. You want to make your book available, widely available, but you don't want to pay to publish. You've come to the right place. This Hubpage is about where and how to epublish your Christian book...for free.
We'll take a look at some of the sites that offer free epublishing and tell you what to expect. I'm also including a list of websites where you can epublish. If you are familiar with a site not on the list, please list it in the comment box.
The book pictured here was my first -- a devotions book for new and young Christians. I published it as a print book and then an ebook. I've since gone on to publish some 19 e-titles. I share some examples here, along with what I've learned along the way.
Now that the Writing is Completed...
When you've completed your manuscript, you may believe it's time to publish. But don't rush into things. Has your manuscript been polished? Have you reviewed it carefully, gotten feedback and made any recommended changes? Have you had the book edited? Another pair of eyes, or two or three, is invaluable. It's good to get professional help, but even a volunteer who is sharp with writing and grammar may prove useful.
Before you publish, take time to review the manuscript and be sure it is as good as you can make it. Check for spelling errors, errors in grammar and -- of course -- clarity of expression and thought. Is your book well put together? Does it accomplish its mission? Is is clear and to the point? Or is it redundant?
When you can say yes to all of those, then you are ready to begin the process of epublishing. Read on...
Owning a Kindle lets you carry a large number of books in one, light-weight ereader. Plus you save trees and money.
Publishing on Smashwords
If you want to reach readers through a variety of digital formats, Smashwords.com may be for you. It is free so price is no barrier. It's also fairly easy to do.
You should know, however, that there is no digital rights management (DRM). What this means is that you are going to trust your readers not to give away free copies of your ebook. If they do, hopefully you won't mind … too much.
Whether to use DRM is one of your choices as an author. Those who favor it are trying to reduce theft and boost profits. You don't want to leave the key in the ignition so the car is easy to steal, that's the idea. Those who are against DRM say you should trust your reader. Most folks are honest and any who do not behave accordingly are really just giving you free advertising. Obscurity is a big obstacle for new authors, they believe, and DRM just makes your book harder to utilize. Why trouble your reader?
Smashwords is in the latter camp. So if you want to publish on Smashwords, you don't have DRM. What they advise is a statement to readers asking them to visit Smashwords and buy their own copy if they haven't already.
For many of us, a statement like that may be sufficient. Maybe it is sufficient for some books, but maybe with others you don't want to take a chance. If you believe you are making it too tempting for folks to steal by not having DRM, Smashwords is not for you. But don't worry. There are more options.
On Smashwords, you'll be uploading a .doc file. Don't try to use an HTML or PDF file. They don't take them. Microsoft Word .docs are the preferred. So if you've used Microsoft Word to write your book, you are positioned for Smasnwords. It's easy to upload and let readers have access to your book.
At Smashwords, there is traffic so folks can find your book. But if you're not promoting it as well, you may not make any sales. You should know that in advance. A few links here and there from other websites will help people find your book. Having affiliates will help people find and buy your book. Promoting Smashwords as a website will help people find your book.
Now one of the most exciting things about Smashwords is the free distribution. To do this, you must be accepted into their Premium Catalog. Don't worry. It is free too. The only thing is you have to have your book formatted according to their specifications. This is just so retailers will be happy with you. The standards are not grievous. They are not unreasonable. So why not go for the gold?
You'll need a cover and you'll need to format your book's interior, preferably in Microsoft Word. There is a style guide with explicit instructions. You can find it here. Follow it. Be prepared to upload and test your manuscript, maybe a few times. It's worth it. You can get accepted into the Amazon store, the Apple store, the Barnes and Noble store, Sony, etc.
Smashwords even throws in a free ISBN number if you want one. You also can supply your own if you want to be able to use the same ISBN number to sell your ebook in other venues.
Publishing for the Amazon Kindle
Tapping into the huge Amazon.com market is a boon for any author, so why not take advantage of Amazon's offer to publish for the Amazon Kindle? With Amazon, you do have a choice to use digital rights management, if you prefer. So using Amazon is a go if DRM is important to you. It's an option, so it is not required, either.
Visit Amazon Digital Text to sign up for free. There's help available on the forum, so formatting should not be an obstacle to you. Amazon will give you global distribution and assign you an ASIN number which they use to track your book. The website will offer you instructions for getting started, formatting, and managing your titles and sales.
Do not think that just because you've made it to Amazon.com your book will sell. It is still very important for you to create interest in your book and drive traffic to the website to buy it. You will be sharing a portion of the proceeds with Amazon, so you may very well want to have several other sales venues available to you including your own website or blog, your church blog, and even Hub page where you can claim an Amazon affiliate fee on any sales.
Just so you know, the Kindle format is not only just for those who have purchased an ereader. Kindle books can now be read on a number of other devices with a free application from Amazon. They can be downded here: Kindle for PC, Kindle for iPad, Kindle for Mac, Kindle for iPhone, Kindle for Android.
What You Should KNOW About Self Publishing
Publishing your own book is the fastest way to get your book in front of readers. What You Should KNOW About Self Publishing tells you how to get rolling. From start to finish, this book is packed with candid and useful advice about how to develop your idea into a salable book.
In this book, you'll look at: Art selection, researching and writing your manuscript, why editing is important, how to get free publicity, how to market your book, and -- most of all -- how to avoid costly mistakes.
I wrote this book to share what I have learned through my own experience in the publishing industry. It is available in a number of ebook formats from my website, as well as Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords and other online retailers.
Fast Track to Victory, A Christian Guidebook
A book God can use to change lives
After I became a Christian, I realized God wanted me to use my talents and experiences to serve him. Because of my experience in the newspaper industry, I set out to write Bible-based columns sharing the wisdom He had taught me.
Before too long, He led me to share these experiences in a book, for those who weren't trained in the Bible. I knew what that felt like; as a new Christian, I looked for a way to catch up but never found it. So I wrote it myself: Fast Track to Victory, a book for those eager to walk in the fulfillment of God's promises for their lives.
The book encapsulates the biblical wisdom we need to start living the victorious Christian life. It is jam-packed with God's wisdom for our lives, wisdom we might have to learn the hard way.
I share practical lessons God taught me after I surrendered my life to him as an adult after suffering from a devasting disease. I include truths that set us free to truly love and forgive others, set aside pride, deal with tragedy and death, and lots more. A non-denominational book based on the King James Bible, Fast Track contains 40 short lessons geared at all God seekers, but particularly new and young Christians.
You can download a free preview of the book at my website at http://www.newchristianbooksonlinemagazine.com
About the Author
A self-published author, I work as a freelance writer and self publishing assistant. I write magazine articles for print and online publications as well as assisting authors with self publishing. In addition to being a writer on Hubpages, I am a provider at Constant Content, and Elance, where I offer writing, editing, proofreading, layout and design.
In my career, I have witnessed a great evolution in the media. In my first newspaper job in 1977, I penned stories on a manual typewriter and took photos with a 35 mm using manual lenses. Soon afterwards, the newspaper world became computerized.
These days interviews can be conducted not only in person or over the telephone but through email and video chat. While some readers still prefer print traditional newspapers and magazines, others opt to receive their news over the Internet or directly into their Kindles and other e-reading devices. The revolution has impacted book publishers, who appear more reluctant to take a chance on newbie authors. As a result, many self publish, some quite effectively. They are reaching out to readers through their websites and blogs, speaking engagements, through ebooks and sometimes print-on-demand books.
Today's writer is less likely to make his or her living working for a publisher who supplies the readers and a regular paycheck with benefits. As a result, staff writers are turning to freelance writing and self publishing. They wear many hats. They are now business owners, marketers and in some cases publicists. They compete in a global marketplace for clients, readers, and search engine favor. They are paid per article, number of words, page views, or ad revenues. Despite the challenges, the doors are open for those with a message.
One way to reach others with the gospel is through the ebook. I hope you find this Hubpage helpful. Please let me know if I can assist your further.
To learn more about me and my work, visit my website New Christian Books Online Magazine. I offer book coaching through my website, Mentor Me Career Network. Listen to my original Scripture songs at www.SongsfromtheWord.com.
Pray What God Says by Christine Martin. $9.99 from Smashwords.com
Pray What God Says is a valuable resource that will help the believer gain a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ through prayer. Learn how you can: Develop unbroken communion and fellowship with God; Experience the manifestation of blessing in every facet of life by declaring the scriptures over your circumstances; Pray effectually for spiritual growth, family, health and finances.
Christian Ebooks from Smashwords
Check out what other Christian authors are selling on Smashwords.
Scriptural Pattern of The Holy Spirit by Rodney Mire. $5.99 from Smashwords.com
The Holy Spirit dwells in us 24 hours a day 7 days a week. We should find out everything we can about this Spirit. God gives us the Holy Spirit as a gift. All we need to do is receive and enjoy.
Captivated Anew: Restored to Pursue Him by Linden Wolfe. $3.99 from Smashwords.com
God desires restoration for His people. He can mercifully "restore the years that the locusts have eaten" in our life. He wants us to pursue Him and He is infinitely worthy of that pursuit and the greatest treasure imaginable. I pray you are captivated anew as God restores you to pursue Jesus in all of His worth, His wisdom, and His ways.
Chapter 1, Verse 1 by Tom Allen. $4.99 from Smashwords.com
The Book of Revelation is not about physical death and destruction, it is about our spiritual death and resurrection. Chapter 1, Verse 1 explains how and why the seven seals, trumpets and other symbols represent expressions of Christ within us as we experience the mystery of God.
Faith In The Grace by Michael Wilson. $24.95 from Smashwords.com
We are all children of God, and as such, we are all brothers and sisters of Christ, whether we have come to accept him as our savior or not. True Christianity is universal and unwavering. True Christianity is an opportunity given to all of God's children regardless of race or region. These are the lessons I taught my children.
Promoting Your Christian Ebook
Marketing is an important part of a writer's job, especially these days. So while you are planning your publishing project, you need to think ahead to marketing and promotions. A good place to publicize your book is at New Christian Books Online Magazine, my a free online publication about kingdom-building books.
I publish New Christian Books Online Magazine as a service to Christian readers and authors. It's a place you, as an author, can post book announcements and excerpts. Post a pre-release announcement, a post-release announcement, and an excerpt to keep your name and book title in front of readers. Visit regularly and leave comments on the other books as well.
While it's usually recommended that people build their reputation in one genre, those with a creative spirit may find they want to write for different age groups. In fiction and nonfiction. That's what happened with me.
I'm sharing here a short-story collection I was inspired to write for 10- to 14-year-olds. It's called Just Like Jonah Wail Tales.
In case you're wondering, wail tales are exaggerated tales of woe that teach youngsters there is a price to pay when you disobey. These modern day Jonah-style stories feature youths who have made bad choices and gotten themselves in a heap of trouble. The good news is: They turn to God.
This book delivers a lot of biblical truth in a fun and fictitious format, enabling kids to pray along with the youths in trouble for God's salvation and intervention in their lives. It covers a lot of ground, from pride, to selfishness, rebellion, and giving up, because it is all disobedience to God's will for us.
It is my goal to help others sidestep the emptiness that comes from not having God in their lives. I know what it's like -- because I learned the hard way.
You can find a free preview at my website at www.newchristianbooksonlinemagazine.com
An Ebook to Help People Connect to God
Finding God: Biblical Answers to Questions about Our Maker, an ebook by yours truly, is a book designed to help readers establish the most important relationship of their lives, the relationship with God.
I wrote the ebook because I realized how vulnerable to lies people are when they don't know God. I sought to encourage them to seek God early.
The ebook covers important questions like who is God, who is Jesus, what God expects of us, how to find God and how to accept the gift of salvation. It is short and to the point.
The ebook is available from my website and e-retailers including Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.