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Three mistakes to avoid when self-publishing an e-book

Posted by Maria Murnane | January 29, 2013

Creating an eBook is a great way to reach an even larger audience. However, it’s important to do it right, or you risk turning off potential readers. I asked Joel Friedlander, an award-winning book designer and the author of A Self-Publisher’s Companion: Expert Advice for Authors Who Want to Publish, for the three the most common mistakes he sees indie authors make with their digital efforts. Here’s what he had to say:

  1. Don’t just copy the front matter from your print book. Print books often have lengthy front matter before you actually get to the content. This doesn’t work well for e-books, where only a small sample is available to browsers before they buy, and if it’s entirely copyright, dedication page, contents and so on, they won’t get to see your awesome writing.
  2. Don’t make your eBook cover too complicated. Trying to fit lots of images to represent all the themes in your book won’t work very well when the cover is reduced to the size of a postage stamp. Instead, keep it simple and legible.
  3. Don’t use tabs, spaces, or manual line breaks in your file. Although your manuscript might look fine to you, all of these elements will put codes into your book file that will keep it from flowing properly on an e-reader and create a book that looks unprofessional.

To learn more about Joel, visit www.TheBookDesigner.com. You can also follow him on Twitter (@JFbookman). Next week I’ll ask him for his thoughts on mistakes to avoid when self-publishing a print book, so be sure to check back.

-Maria

This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2013 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.

 

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