Book Tips

Book publishing, preorders, and new releases

Book publishing

There’s a learning curve in book publishing. My decade of experience focusing on book design and publishing helps me advise my clients.

For example, I recently ordered a book cover template from IngramSpark without the price encoded in the bar code. This allows the author to more easily change the price at a later date. (For this reason, Amazon CreateSpace doesn’t even offer encoding the price in the bar code anymore.) It is my understanding that bookstores place their own bar code stickers over those preprinted on books (and I’ve heard bookstores won’t order from CreateSpace, which is one reason some authors choose IngramSpark for book printing and distribution).

Preorders

Of course there’s always more to learn in any field and change is inevitable. Fortunately, publishing is evolving to benefit authors self publishing. While my focus is book design, marketing is crucial to success. Here’s an article entitled “Should You Make a Book Available for Preorder? 14 Authors Weigh In” by Carlyn Robertson.

New releases

Professional writer Maureen Driscoll launched the second book in her Jasmine Cottage series: Where Dreams Merge. (I designed the cover.)

Fred Grooms released another book for young adults: Leaders Marching Forward. (I designed and formatted the interior pages.)

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.

Write another book, conference notes, new release

Why to write another book

“Frankly, the single most effective action I or anyone can take to promote a book is to write another book,” says romance/thriller/mystery author Stephanie Bond. See more at Writing Advice: Authors Share 6 Ways to Market Your Books. (This strategy has worked well for my client Maureen Driscoll.)

Conference notes

I followed the tweets from Digital Book World 2017 (#DBW17) where audiobooks were the focus. Ebook sales have slowed (apparently peaking in 2013) and audio is the new rage. Reported from one session, “The number of audiobooks published in the last two years has grown 44 percent.”

Other snippets from the conference:
“Audiobook sales were $1.77B in 2015. Double-digit growth every year over the past 4 years.”

“PEW Research, 2016: 73% of adult Americans read a book in the last 12 months. Breakdown 14% audio, 28% ebook, 65% print.”

New release

"Roles and Missions" by General Merrill A. McPeak
Retired General Merrill McPeak’s trilogy is now complete with the release of Roles and Missions. I’ve had the pleasure of designing the covers, interior pages, and ebook formats of all three books.

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.

Book cover design inspiration, beauty, and fun

Book cover design inspiration

My inbox was full of book cover design articles last month. Here are two of the best for you. Enjoy!

This article by Dan Wagstaff displays amazingly creative book covers. It’s a visual treat to scroll through it.

This one in Publishers Weekly shows a cover redesign. It’s interesting to see the art direction and progression.

Beauty

A friend told me about this song and I love it so much I thought I’d share it with you: “Heart is Wide Open” by Danya River.

Fun

Pantone unveils the color of the year: Greenery.  “A fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore, and renew. Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals individuals to take a deep breath, oxygenate, and reinvigorate.”

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.

Who are you writing to?

What surrounds you when you write?

This is an interesting observation on writing from “The Marketing Minute,” a newsletter by Marcia Yudkin, Marketing Expert and Mentor:

Many marketers recommend a tool called personas for getting into the minds of customers. To create a persona, you construct a detailed profile of one customer that includes a name, family, work routine, hobbies, key frustrations, goals and more. Some experts suggest selecting a stock photo to represent the customer persona.

Robert Cialdini’s new book “Pre-Suasion” indicates that posting such pictures in your workspace may improve your ability to connect with customers.

Cialdini observed a marked difference in his writing style in two environments when he was writing his first book, aimed at a general audience. Pages he wrote in his campus office while surrounded by scholarly reference materials and looking out at professors, students and university buildings were more abstruse and academic than what he wrote in an off-campus apartment littered with newspapers and popular magazines, with a view of folks going about everyday lives.

Numerous studies corroborate this effect of surroundings, Cialdini says. For instance, radiologists who had a photo of the patient nearby while they reviewed his or her X-rays performed more conscientiously than those who didn’t.


Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the book cover and interior pages, guide you through the maze of book printing including setting up POD accounts, and design the ebook formats. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.

CreateSpace, elephants, and publishing

CreateSpace news

My client, Robert Newton, recently shared with me that CreateSpace no longer embeds the price in the bar code when it’s printed on the back cover. CreateSpace told him it’s so authors can change the price of their books. (Publishing is a dynamic industry and I appreciate my clients sharing what they learn so I can share with you.)

New release

Did you know that wildlife conservationists estimate that African elephants may be extinct by 2020? I did not. Robert Newton’s latest release, The Vanishing Dragon, is a well-researched, fast-paced novel featuring a U.S. Customs agent tracking down those responsible for the slaughter and cover up. (I designed the interior pages for print and the Kindle file plus the cover and interior pages of Robert’s first book, Soldiers of the Strange Night.)

Publishing tidbits

The Big 5 Book Publishers and their imprints in one cool chart.

An interesting look at the history of book cover design in “Yes, you really can judge a book by its cover” by Michael John Goodman. “Illustrated book covers and dust jackets are a relatively recent development in book history. Until the 19th century, book covers served the practical purpose of protecting the book, or providing a space for advertisement.”

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.

Book pricing, reviews, and printing

Book pricing

Research the market before setting your book pricing. One of the many reasons that paperback books are still selling well is because traditional publishers are pricing e-books close to their print counterparts. For an enlightened view on pricing, check out the article Indie Authors: How to Price Your Book for Optimal Success! by Penny C. Sansevieri, CEO and founder of Author Marketing Experts, Inc.

Book reviews

While book reviews on Amazon are a must, many of my book design clients go beyond (they’re an overachieving bunch!) and use Kirkus, a paid book review service. Kirkus is respected in the industry because of its unbiased reviews. Here’s a list of 10 Paid Book Review Sites That Can Springboard Your Writing CareerPlease research the company before investing in a book review.

Book printing

The Print on Demand (POD) model, such as Amazon CreateSpace, is to sell a book and then print the book to fulfill the order. If you know you can sell over 1000 books, it’s generally most cost effective to use an offset/traditional book printer. Drop me an email if you need a recommendation.

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.