Designing Wonderland Cafe, Part 8 (Driving Questions…)
February 12, 2017
The Alice in Wonderland Wedding Planner is here! New Ideas for Rosy Nuptials
January 15, 2019
Publishing on Kindle: A Step-by-Step Guide to Using the KDP Interface, part 2
December 5, 2014
In this blog post about publishing your book on Kindle, I'll cover the following elements:
Where to put the book's description in the KDP interface
What kinds of information you should put in the interface to get the best sales results
What to do with the book's contributor tab
What you need to know about your publishing rights
Which categories to pick so that your book gets seen by the most people
Writing the Book Description
Your book's description is one of the primary elements that will determine your book's sales. Aside from putting the book in the right category and having an enticing cover, this element can make or break your book. (The only more important element is the actual sample that you provide for your readers.)
Here's what that looks like on your Amazon page:
Digital Book World Blog recommends something counter to what I've heard, which is to NOT put the book's description in the description area, but to treat it like a copywriting sales page.
She recommends the following
Start off with any book awards or awards for the author
Put the best three quotes from the reviews you've gotten
Follow this with a short, short book description -- maybe a tagline
This makes sense to me. Unfortunately, I didn't do that for my Kindle book. I am experimenting with the print version to see what happens with that.
In any event, you'll put whatever description you decide to go with in the description slot. You can use HTML tags to make your description look more lively. Amazon provides you with some of the most common tags. You'll find those here. The list is free.
Below the description slot, you'll find a space to put the book's contributors. You'll include yourself as the author plus the names of people like the editor of your book, illustrators, etc. I personally put down my name as writer and illustrator. Although I didn't illustrate my front cover, I did design it. However, there was no "design" option in the drop down menu, so I opted for illustrator instead.
Many well-connected authors use this option to pair with other authors/ editors, etc. The reason they do this is because combined they have greater reach than if they if publish separately. If you have a big publishing network or mailing list and another author that you know does as well, consider this option to give your book more reach.
Verify Your Publishing Rights
Following the "Contributors" tab, you'll see the "Publishing Rights" area. If you have full rights to your book, then click on that option.
However, if you've done something like repackaged a public domain work like I did with my Hansel and Gretel reading guide, you'll click that option.
If you do choose this please understand that Amazon has guidelines for this. For your work to truly qualify, it must be either a new translation, annotated, or illustrated with at least 10 images. I went with the annotated version of Hansel and Gretel, because the recipes in the book plus the book club questions are based upon Hansel and Gretel.
You should also know that if you decide to make changes to the book once it's published, it'll take longer for you to see the changes to your book or its description; Amazon will double check your rights to the work every time, which causes a hold up.
Here's what that looks like on the interface:
What to Pick in Categories
The categories tab follows the publishing rights area. In this area, you'll provide your book with a filter, making it easier for readers to find you. You'll get two options for this. Try to select the options that make the most sense. For example, my book is a retold fairy tale, so I opted for this category under the "teen" heading.
I also chose "Christian Science Fiction." The latter category was more of a long shot, given that while the book has plenty of Christian imagery, I don't know that it falls strictly under the guidelines of Christian publishing. However, ironically, I also made the best sellers list for this category, so for now, it stays.
Finally, remember to choose a less competitive category if you can at first. Amazon probably has about eight million books on it. That's a lot of books to weed through for your readers. Finding the proper filter category will help them narrow down the search and help you net more sales.
Here's where that tab is in the interface:
In the next installment of this series, I'll go into cover creation as promised.