Selling My Books With CreateSpace

By Ruth Barringham

I’ve been writing and selling books for years and until recently I’ve had my own books printed and sold and shipped them myself.

But last month (November) I began to use Amazon’s POD publishing site, CreateSpace.

And the amazing thing was that I started making sales within the first few days.

The site wasn’t difficult to use although, admittedly, I didn’t do the work myself. My husband who now works along side me, did all the work. He deals with all the technical and financial things so that I can concentrate more on my writing.

Anyway, it was easy to copy and paste the book contents into the online templates and choose the font type and size, etc.

I uploaded 3 books, How to Quit Smoking Without Giving Up Cigarettes, Stand By Me, and my best selling horror novel, Playing For Real.

Playing For Real and How to Quit Smoking already had ISBN numbers but Stand By Me had only ever been an ebook with no ISBN so I used one of CreateSpace’s free ISBNs for it.

The difference between the two options is that books with their own ISBN have restricted distribution (not available to libraries for example) while the book with the free ISBN is available to more places, but can only be sold through CreateSpace so if you want to sell it somewhere else, you’d have to buy your own ISBN independently or buy one through CreateSpace. But the limited distribution from using your own ISBN means it is available to individual buyers and is made available to retailers.

All 3 of the books appear automatically across the Amazon sites and are linked to their digital (Kindle) counterparts.

The only difference is that the book with the free ISBN is advertised on Amazon as being published by CreateSpace while the other two with my own ISBN are advertised as published by my own publishing company, Cheriton House Publishing.

CreateSpace has free book cover designing software. I didn’t need to use it for 2 of my books because they already had covers, but Stand By Me didn’t.

Naturally, Stand By Me had an ebook front cover image already designed and created by Buddy from CoversCorp (who I use all the time), so I used that image as the front cover of the print edition and chose a matching plain colour for the background of the spine and back cover and also wrote a short blurb for the back cover.

CreateSpace provided a free barcode for the back cover too.

They also have an option for creating a Kindle edition of your book which is free and is done automatically. But because all my books were already ebooks I didn’t need to use it.

Publishing with CreateSpace was free to do and the only thing that I paid for was a proof copy of each book.

That part was optional but who wouldn’t want a copy of their own book? Plus I wanted to see how good they were for myself. And I was really pleased with the result.

Once I clicked the box to say I approved the proof copy, my books went live on the website.

And the whole process for all three books took less than two weeks, which included waiting for (in Australia) and approving the proof copies.

And the fast sales made it even better.

Hopefully I’ve done all this just in time for the Christmas sales.

And if you want more information on how to format your books ready for printing, you can read Moira Allen’s article Formatting Your Book For Lulu and CreateSpace.

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