6 Mistakes You Must Avoid When You Create and Publish Your EBook, Part Two

4) Thinking Editing Means Running Spell Checker

Editing is an essential part of the EBook publishing process. It does not just mean pushing the spell checker button and correcting the spellings whilst you watch television. Editing is a serious business and it really needs to be done properly if you are serious about publishing EBooks. Readers are smart and they will soon call you out on reviews if your book needs proper editing. If enough people say this in reviews it can be enough to sink your book without trace.

The ideal is to have a professional editor look at your EBook. Unfortunately, this is a luxury which many can’t afford. You can ask friends and they will most likely get some of the errors. Joining writer’s groups can also help as many people will be prepared to proofread things for others in the group, providing you are willing to reciprocate.

You can also look at finding an inexpensive editor on an outsourcing site such as fiverr. This can be a great way of finding inexpensive editors.

5) Forgetting That a Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

If you are going to spend money anywhere on your EBook it has to be on the cover. Unless you are good at graphics you really should get a professional to design your cover. This is your only chance to make a first impression and if your cover is not eye catching and professional, it does not matter how great your content is, readers will just never buy your book.

You do not have to spend a fortune on an EBook cover. There are plenty of online services out there which will provide you will a pre-designed cover for an affordable price. This option is not as great as the custom design, but when you are publishing your first books you will not have too much money to spend. Set a budget and spend as much as you can afford on a cover. It will make all the difference.

6) Publishing Your EBook and Expecting it to Sell

If famous authors publish a book they will sell many copies just because readers liked their previous books. Authors such as J.K Rowling, Dan Brown or Jodi Picoult would still sell books without ever spending another second on marketing. We are guessing that you do not have that kind of advantage. You are going to have to do something to market your EBook. It isn’t enough to write a great book. You have to promote it.

Big publishing houses have big marketing budgets. You can’t compete with that, but you can make an impact. You are going to have to learn some marketing techniques. There is plenty of information out there about how to use the internet and social media to promote your book. You will have to be a writer and a marketer if you want to make sure that your EBook has a chance of being a success.

6 Mistakes You Must Avoid When You Create and Publish Your EBook, Part One

It is very easy to publish an EBook these days. Gone are the times when you had to get the approval of a publishing house to get your book published. Now, anyone can publish their own book. There are many great things about being able to publish an EBook so easily, however there are some pitfalls to avoid. Here are some ways to avoid the common mistakes which many writers make when they publish an EBook.

1) Not Being a Good Writer

This is a really obvious point, but one which is sadly overlooked by many people who publish EBooks. We have all seen some truly shocking EBooks which would never have made it over the first hurdle in a publishing house. Just because you can publish a book doesn’t mean that you should. Ask yourself the fundamental question of whether your abilities as a writer are actually good enough.

We don’t mean that you have to be perfect. No one is. Even bestselling authors admit that there are things that they have written which they would rather forget about. Take the time to learn your craft. Don’t let the drive for perfection hold you back, but if writing really isn’t your thing you should rethink the whole idea.

2) Writing Something That No One Wants to Read

You may be passionate about your collection of antique candlesticks, but does anyone else want to read about it? Do your market research and find out what people actually want to buy. Check out the bestseller lists and see what sells. Do not be afraid of the competition. There are some niches which are incredibly popular and there is still room for growth.

If you see an area where a lot of books are selling, then there is probably still room in the market for another book. Look at areas where you know that people are actually spending money. Not in places where you think things should be selling, but they really aren’t. This is not the time to guess about what is selling and what isn’t. Learn how to conduct simple research on where the markets are. You will be spending your time wisely in doing some research before you take the plunge and start writing.

3) Writing About Something You Know Nothing About

It is possible to spend a great deal of time on research and write about a topic that you know nothing about., but why are you doing this. The latest hot topic may be “How to Survive a Zombie Attack” or “How to Quit Your Day Job and Make a Living Posting Cat Videos on Social Media”, but if you don’t know anything about it, it’s unlikely that you are going to create a great book about it.

Of course there are people who can write about pretty much anything, but are you one of those people? Be honest with yourself. You may find that you do have this skill, but why make things difficult in the first place? It isn’t as simple just to say write about what you are passionate about, but you do need to consider writing about something that you will enjoy. Writing about things which you don’t find interesting or inspiring is a difficult task. Do not do it unless you absolutely have to.

 

Top 7 Ways You Can Make Sure Your EBook Doesn’t Suck, Part Two

I’m continuing the previous article on how to improve your ebook writing.  Better writing means more sales!  Part one can be found here.

5) Edit Your Work

Proofreading and editing often get overlooked in the EBook world. With some books it sticks out a mile and your readers will notice in an instant. Even famous published works have mistakes in and they have undergone a vigorous editing process. A couple of mistakes are forgivable. A book full of them really is not. If you think that all you need to do is use the spell checker, you really are mistaken.

The ideal is to pay a professional editor, but we realize that this may be an expense that you want to avoid. Good editing is money well spent and really does make a difference. However, if you really can’t justify the cost of a professional editor you should make sure you don’t forget this vital step.

It is usually easier to self-edit your work if you leave it for at least a couple of days after you have finished your book. The brain tends to pay tricks on you and you will see what you want to see. This means you may miss vital things if you are too close to your content. Take a fresh look at it when things are not quite so familiar to you.

Get a friend to look at it next, but choose someone who you know will be honest with you. There is no use asking someone who won’t want to give you negative feedback.

If you already have an established readership send free copies out to select people who you know are already fans of your work. Ask that they give feedback about your work. You may be surprised as to how much your readers are prepared to help.

We still think that you really need to get an independent editor to look at your work. You can often find someone good, at a reasonable price, on sites like fiverr.

6) Pay Attention to The Cover

You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Let’s not gloss over this. Everyone judges a book by its cover. Having a great cover for your EBook can mean the difference between being a bestseller and sinking without trace.

We know that you may not have much money to invest in your first EBook, but you really should invest as much as you can in the design of the cover. Unless you are particularly skilled at graphics it usually is not a good idea to create your own. You do not have to go for the full service custom design. There are many services out there using stock phots and designs which are modifiable to your requirements. These cost less than a custom design, but are still a much better option than a homemade cover.

7) Make the Title Great

The picture on the cover is very important. So is the title. These two elements are the first impression that anyone gets of your EBook. You need to make an impact. The clichés are true. You do not get long to capture a reader and persuade them that your EBook is worth taking a second look at. A boring title will just cause potential readers to move on. Your book could be amazing, but you will lose readers if your title is bad or boring. Don’t fall into that trap.

Top 7 Ways You Can Make Sure Your EBook Doesn’t Suck, Part One

Anyone can self-publish an EBook. The advances of technology and the rise of the digital book have brought some great authors and content into the world. It has also brought some really bad EBooks into existence.

In the good old days of book publishing there was at least some quality control because your book had to be accepted by a traditional publisher, or it would never see the light of day. Now anyone can publish an EBook. How do you make sure that the EBook that you want to write doesn’t suck and fall into publishing oblivion? Here are some ways that you can avoid that fate for your EBook:

1) Be Interesting

Everything that could be written about, has been written about. You don’t need to come up with something completely original (everything has been done before), but you do need to be interesting. Standing out from the crowd is becoming increasingly difficult in a very overcrowded digital world where everyone is vying for attention. Always be thinking of ways that you can distinguish yourself and stand out.

2) Write Well

This is pretty obvious point, but anyone who has ever spent time reading EBooks knows that good writing skills are not a requirement to be published. There are some incredibly badly written books out there. Make sure that you learn your craft and constantly strive to improve as a writer.

3) The Planning Stage is Vital

Always have a plan. It doesn’t have to be a huge document, but it will help you enormously at every stage of writing. Take some time to sit down and plan a coherent outline. You may well find that half way into the book you realize that Chapter 7 belongs after Chapter 10, but this is fine. You can deal with that. An EBook without a plan will be difficult to write and unless you do something to fix it before it is published, the reader is going to know that you really didn’t think this through at all.

4) Have Character Outlines

If you are writing a fiction book you will find that as you get to know your characters they will develop. It really can be a process of getting to know the characters in your book. However, it is essential that you get basic details correct.

You do not have to do extensive character outlines at the start, but take the time to put down some basic thing about your characters. It is surprising how easy it is to get things wrong if you don’t. Believe me your readers will notice the smallest things. You can start will basic things such as height, age, hair color, eye color, siblings and family details. If you do not work out these things at the start you are likely to make mistakes. Your blond character becomes brunette. The minor character who had two children in the first book now has none in the fifth book in the series. These are all avoidable mistakes, but they do happen.