1.Edit – then edit again

One reason so many people frown upon self-publishing is due to poorly written books. Or, at least poorly edited books. It looks unprofessional. No one wants to spend their hard-earned dollars buying something that looks as though no thought or care was put into it.

That said, do a quick edit yourself. Look for spelling/grammatical errors and correct them. Then, you must have someone else edit it. You are far too close to your own work to catch everything. Even the biggest names out there have books with errors. You want these to be as few as possible!

2. Format

Once your book is edited, you’ll want to format it. Formatting includes sizing the book and deciding how you want it to look. Chapter headings, copyright page, title page, etc. This is where it begins to look like an actual book, rather than just a typed Word document.

While this process can feel time-consuming and tedious, it’s what will make your book look good and feel appealing to the reader. If you have written a children’s book, it would be well worth paying someone to format your book so that all “bleed” requirements are met and it comes out looking great!

3. Cover Design

When you have your cover designed, you can use a graphic designer you already know or are referred to, or you can use a service such as Fiverr.com. A designer will need to know the size of your book, as well as page count. This is why I wait until the formatting is complete, as it can change the page count. Of course, you can have a mock-up of the cover done so you can market the front of the book prior to publishing, but in this case, I’m talking about the complete cover.

The designer should understand bleed and know to include space for the spine of your book. If your book is under 100 pages, it will most likely not allow for words on the spine.

You want your cover to appear professional and unique! Don’t accept just anything – be sure this part gets done right!

4. Upload It

Now it’s time to set up your account with whichever distribution company you choose to use. I recommend Amazon KDP or IngramSpark, depending upon your needs with your book. For either distributor, the set-up process is fairly simple. They walk you through it step-by-step. In the process, they will have you provide personal information, such as your banking info and social security number or EIN (if you have created a business for yourself). This is for royalty and taxation purposes.

After setting up the account, you begin the Title creation process. Just follow the prompts and upload your manuscript and book cover. That’s it!


After uploading your manuscript and cover, you will be advised if there are any issues with either document. If there are no issues, you will be ready to publish your book!

If you haven’t already, this is when you’ll set the price and release date for your book. You’ll be told what the minimum price of the book can be. Outside of that price, you have total control! You can even go back into your account later and change the price.

Once you hit that button to publish your book, it will be available on Amazon within a day or two.

YOU DID IT!!! Follow these steps, and you will be able to publish your own book and save yourself hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars!

Still overwhelmed or just don’t want to do it yourself? I’m here to help you! Just email me at shannon@clcforauthors.com.