Let’s start at the beinning, okay. I had only had a couple of e-publishing experiences before this and both ended in utter disaster. My first few books… well, I had to adjust them about a million times bafore they would be accepted and their meatgrinder program made them look awful. Formatting was not my strong point and things were labelled wrongly, line spaces in stupid places, you name it I made that mistake. I reckon it was more blind luck and stubbornness that got my first few titles in the premium catalogue. Over the last few months though, I have grown to know miicrosoft word a bit better and now understand all the formatting tools it provides. It really does do most of the work for you - you just need to add that annoying talent part. I now have five books available at smashwords.com and all of them were accepted into the premium catalogue which fills me with a lot of pride - you see the approved mark on the dashboard and you know somehow that you’re really quite good.
I still have the odd problem with formatting if I forget to do it as I write but my last book - running shoes - was approved within two days with no changes having to be made. I am now working on my sixth book for smashwords and am doing all my checks as \i go along - it’s so much easier than trawling through hundreds of pages when you get to the end. Now that I have founds lots more formatting options on my computer, I want to play around and see what flies - my own TOC, tiny picktures to end chapters. I’m also considering setting up my own website to upload my work.
Publishing at smashwords has given me a chance to show the world what I can do. It really is too easy if you know what you’re doing. it’s pretty cool if you don’t too because they actually tell you what needs to be fixed. So, here are my tips for future little smashers…
1, write the book! Always a good start, I find.
2, spell check, grammar check, clean underpants check because it’s about to get serious
3, read the smashwords style guide and adjust your work accordingly. This may take a while - I advise alcohol and cake to get though it.
4, create an account and publish. Yay team you!
5, have it rejected and fix what it tells you to
7, repeat steps 5 and 6 until your hair falls out (unless you’re bald and then until it grows back)
8, have it accepted because it is perfect in every way
9, read the marketing guide and start promoting your work.
10, sit back and watch the royalties roll in - so called because you have become excellency!