Did the Templars kill JFK? Is BigFoot living in the trailer next door? The world must know! Self publishing is easier than ever with the arrival of the internet....all you need is a story. There are dozens of sites which offer eBooks for sale and like all content publishers what they need is content.

Assuming you’ve already made the decision to self-publish, there are some very good reasons to go with Amazon and the Kindle. The Kindle is the dominant dedicated ereader device currently on the market, and the ebook market has been growing at a rate of around 400% year over year since 2007. It’s simply too large a market sector for authors and publishers to ignore. Publishing your book in Kindle format via Amazon’s DTP is free, and doing so gets your work onto the virtual shelves at Amazon in a matter of days.

Also, it’s no longer true that only Kindle owners will be able to buy and read your Kindle book: Amazon has released free Kindle reader “apps” that run on PCs, Macs, smart phones, the iPad, the iPod Touch, the iPhone, Blackberrys, and numerous other devices.

About the only people left out of the Kindle book party are those who only read ebooks on competing, dedicated devices (e.g., the Sony Reader). Releasing a Kindle edition of your book can be a very cost effective trial for a book you’re considering releasing in print formats.

This instructable covers the basic steps to prepare your document for publication on the Kindle eBook reader. The process itself is pretty straightforward, once you have the document. Which is, not surprisingly, the hard part.

Step 1: Getting Started

You're going to need a few things. You're going to need access to a computer and the internet. If you don't have a computer or high speed internet access you can probably use systems at your local library.

You're going to need a word processing program of some sort to prepare your manuscript. Here you have to make a decision about your publishing future. If you plan someday to distribute your document in print format you may want to take advantage of many advanced formatting and other features of a higher end word processor such as Microsoft Word or OpenOffice (free from www.openoffice.org).

If, on the other hand, you plan only to publish eBooks then you are much better off to use a WYSIWYG HTML processor such as Kompozer or the SeaMonkey HTML editor.

A comprehensive comparison of HTML editors can be found on wikipedia.

You're going to need a graphics editor to prepare your cover art. This can be as simple as Microsoft Paint or something far more complex such as Adobe PhotoShop. I generally use the GNU Image Manipulation Program (free from www.gimp.org) for image editing.

You'll need a program to convert the HTML file into the Kindle format. There is a conversion program available from Amazon for PC, Mac and Linux users. It is called KindleGen and may be download for free from the Amazon DIgital Text Platform site. You will also want to download the Kindle Previewer so you can double check the formatting.

Choosing this option means you will have to manually create the table of contents file using a text editor.

For PC users the Mobi Pocket Creator ( also free ) is a better choice. This includes file import along with a Table of Contents wizard that makes the process of creating the TOC trivial.

Once your book has been properly formatted and a table of contents prepared your book is ready to be uploaded to Amazon and sold to the general public.

Okay so new that we've downloaded the software we're ready to begin.....
Oh My God, was that a Wonderfalls reference? you're amazing :)
Probably not since I'm not sure what Wonderfalls is but thank you for the kind words.
great and thank you
If you publish something either directly or indirectly because of this article please share the link with us.
Correct me if I am wrong, but you are saying that anyone can publish any material for free, as long as it is approved by Amazon?
Yeah, pretty much. There may be limits, for instrance they may not accept pornographic materials or Nazi propaganda but in general if you publish it they will sell it.
What percentage of the price does Amazon take when someone buys a book?
That varies based on list and sales price. Check the site for details, its not something I keep on top of.
You mentioned Tax ID, what about for foreigners who want to self publish in Amazon? the only thing I am certain is even foreigners have to file for tax earn in US.
I have no information about tax ids and foreign nationals. You might check with Amazon or check the IRS webiste ( www.irs.gov ). I think you can probably get a tax ID from them for this purpose, but you'll probably need to file a tax return or get hosed for the withholding.
Thanks for writing this Instructable. It's really detailed and well thought out... it's obvious you put a lot of effort into it. I don't have any writings worth publishing, but it was still an interesting read none the less. Keep up the good work!
Thank you for the kind words. Don't sell yourself short, everybody knows something worth something worth sharing whether in book or pamphlet form or internet publishing such as instructables.
over the past thirty years, Copyright law has been reworked to favor the author over the big publishing companies.
I must say this is a very well timed Instructable. With NaNoWriMo just around the corner I could see a lot of people being interested in this. <br> <br>Well done.
Thank you for these kind words. What is NaNoWriMo?
NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. The goal is to write a 50,000 word first draft Novel in 30 days. This will be my 2nd year participating.
Would anyone be able to steal your content and copyright it? Thank you!
Copy and copyright are two very, very different questions. Plagiarized works may not be copyrighted and any rights claimed on a plagiarized work are indefensible. This means that the true owner of the copyright can sue and win damages.<br><br>Copy protection is a different question. The Kindle supports a variety of encryption and DRM options, you'll need to review the docs to understand what levels of protection are available.
No more so than with a printed book - Your copyright is intact even in E format

About This Instructable


64 favorites


More by egbertfitzwilly: How to switch to E-Cigs Easy Sausage Gravy and Biscuits Studio On A Stick - Part One
Add instructable to: