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wizard tim
05-14-2011, 01:00 AM
I haven't found a lot of info online on how to self publish a book for the iPad and iPhone.

Is it true you have to have a Mac to do it?

I have a PC, so is there a way or product I can use to publish for the Apple products? I'd like to do it myself rather than go thru a third party.

Any recommendations?

Thanks!

Torgo
05-14-2011, 01:22 AM
I think if you're self-pubbing you'll need to go via Smashwords, which IIRC feeds in to the iBookstore. PC or Mac shouldn't be an issue.

KevinMcLaughlin
05-14-2011, 04:30 AM
You can only go direct if you have a Mac or access to a Mac.

There's a number of distributors which will put your book on iBooks for you, though; Smashwords is probably the best known of those.

James D. Macdonald
05-14-2011, 04:51 AM
This is me in the iBookstore (http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-confessions-peter-crossman/id398433551?mt=11), and I wouldn't take a Mac as a gift. (Had one once, most expensive computer I ever owned, and the darned thing never worked.)

The way in for me was via Smashwords.

wizard tim
05-15-2011, 11:04 PM
I've read good things about Smashwords, it's just that I'd rather self publish without a middleman if possible.

Would you all advise self pubbing to Barnes & Noble's Nook instead?

I think there's free software out there that I could use for converting to their epub format. I've already put some work on Amazon's Kindle because I was able to load an HTML doc and they handled the formating to mobi.

Thanks for your advice.

Medievalist
05-15-2011, 11:11 PM
http://www.apple.com/itunes/content-providers/book-faq.html

KevinMcLaughlin
05-16-2011, 09:26 AM
I've read good things about Smashwords, it's just that I'd rather self publish without a middleman if possible.

Would you all advise self pubbing to Barnes & Noble's Nook instead?

I think there's free software out there that I could use for converting to their epub format. I've already put some work on Amazon's Kindle because I was able to load an HTML doc and they handled the formating to mobi.

Thanks for your advice.

I don't know that I'd do any retailer *instead* of another. ;) Why not do all? Apple's market share seems to be smaller than Amazon or B&N - right now - but no guarantee that's always going to be so, and I do know some folks who sell more books via iBooks than via Kindle.

Personally, I'd just do Smashwords -> iBooks.

If you get a Mac sometime, and want to do the direct thing, great. You can always take down all the books from Smashwords and go direct. Nets you a bit more money per sale, which is a good thing. But I definitely would not recommend giving up all potential iBook sales just because one didn't have a Mac computer.

Edit: Just read that bit Medievalist linked to. Didn't see anything about needing a Mac - just an iTunes account? I'd read the uploads could only be via a Mac. Anyone have some clarification on this? Thanks. ;)

Giraffe
05-17-2011, 01:32 AM
I've read good things about Smashwords, it's just that I'd rather self publish without a middleman if possible.

Would you all advise self pubbing to Barnes & Noble's Nook instead?

I think there's free software out there that I could use for converting to their epub format. I've already put some work on Amazon's Kindle because I was able to load an HTML doc and they handled the formating to mobi.

Thanks for your advice.

No need at all to go through Smashwords. Barnes & Noble provides the instructions for doing it yourself here: http://pubit.barnesandnoble.com/pubit_app/bn?t=pi_reg_home

You've apparently already found the instructions for Kindle.

wizard tim
05-17-2011, 06:54 PM
Thanks to everyone for the links and the advice! I'm reading the links now and I'll have to figure out which is better for me -- using Smashwords but giving up some percentage, or going do-it-yourself but probably putting in more time and effort.

Maybe someday we'll reach a standard ebook format and this will all be a lot easier.

KevinMcLaughlin
05-17-2011, 09:42 PM
The problem isn't really standardized formats (there's *effectively* only two, if you don't include the proprietary DRMs). It's the number of retailers you want to get your book up on so it reaches maximum potential audience. I don't see that going away - if anything, I see it diversifying and becoming more challenging to place your book everywhere it really ought to be as more retailers spring up to take advantage of the growing market.

Medievalist
05-17-2011, 09:55 PM
Maybe someday we'll reach a standard ebook format and this will all be a lot easier.

These are at heart retail sites. Think of the ebook as just another container for a book; there's hardcover and paperback and ebook.

Put your ebook out in as many formats as you can, and on as many retail sites as you can.

Solivagant
05-17-2011, 10:15 PM
Check out the following link to eHow to find out more on selling your eBook directly through iBooks:

http://www.ehow.com/how_7649056_sell-ibooks.html

I was going to write it all out from my own memory, but I got lazy and found someone else had already done it...

GothamGal
05-18-2011, 02:55 AM
Barnes and Noble's Nook reads the same format as the iPad--epub.
I would look at the main formats out there and then check out what company would let me do more coverage.
I think with Smashwords, you can do epub, html, mobi, pdf...

KevinMcLaughlin
05-18-2011, 10:28 AM
Barnes and Noble's Nook reads the same format as the iPad--epub.
Small correction - iPad as a device will read pretty much any ebook format. Last survey I saw said that about 3/4 of the people reading on iOS devices were using Kindle software to read Amazon books (but that information is months out of date at this point, so I'm not sure whether Apple has gained ground back on their own devices or not, yet).

Apple's iBook reader and store uses epub, though.


I would look at the main formats out there and then check out what company would let me do more coverage.
I think with Smashwords, you can do epub, html, mobi, pdf...
It's not just about formats. As Medievalist rightly pointed out, it's about retailers - getting your book into as many retail outlets as possible. That means the Amazon and B&N for sure (about 90% or so of the US ebook market between the two). But Apple is growing in importance in the US, especially if they kick Amazon and B&N off iOS devices June 30th as some folks think they will (I doubt they will, but that's another issue).

Kobo is important too, especially with them planning to invest heavily in the growing EU market. Sony, while still a bit player, is another venue that you can make sales on. Smashwords is pretty tiny for sales on-site, but their use as a distributor (to easily and quickly get to Apple, Kobo, Sony, Diesel, and if you want B&N as well) is exceptionally useful. As more retailers spring up and Smashwords adds them, that utility will only grow. Probably worth putting the book up on Google eBooks, too - even though their market share is very small, it's still just one more store to have your book for sale in.

Formats are easy. Formatting a novel or basic nonfiction book is *exceptionally* simple, once you know how. They key is not in what formats you have handy - it's in what *retailers* your book can be purchased at. The more, the better.

GothamGal
06-15-2011, 12:16 AM
Small correction - iPad as a device will read pretty much any ebook format. Last survey I saw said that about 3/4 of the people reading on iOS devices were using Kindle software to read Amazon books (but that information is months out of date at this point, so I'm not sure whether Apple has gained ground back on their own devices or not, yet).

Apple's iBook reader and store uses epub, though.


I thought you meant natively, the iBook store/app is specific to epub, and not having to download something from a second party--Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc. :-)

HistorySleuth
02-28-2014, 10:58 AM
Hope you don't mind me bumping an old thread instead of starting a new one. Is it still true that you can't upload to iBooks if you don't have access to a Mac unless it is through Smashwords?

PenTeller
02-28-2014, 11:08 AM
Hope you don't mind me bumping an old thread instead of starting a new one. Is it still true that you can't upload to iBooks if you don't have access to a Mac unless it is through Smashwords?

Yup, still true, unfortunately. I borrowed a friend's, but having the additional learning curve of figuring out how to use a Mac in addition to navigating the Apple uploading software and converting to ePub was not a nice experience. Much preferred the KDP and Nook method.

HistorySleuth
02-28-2014, 06:44 PM
Wow. After all this time I thought they would change that. Think that's why they seem to lag behind in the ebook area?

Arcadia Divine
02-28-2014, 06:55 PM
I hope it's not like their app store policy where you have to pay 99 USD per platform to put a program on their app store.

Parametric
02-28-2014, 06:56 PM
You can also use Draft2Digital to upload to iTunes.

veinglory
02-28-2014, 06:57 PM
Self-publishing is creating the book, the rest is just retail and I would go in order of anticipated greatest profit, which for me would put the ibookstore well down the list.

WriterBN
03-01-2014, 01:10 AM
For me, Amazon turned out to be over 95% of the market. Rather than submitting individually to each of the other retailers, and juggling multiple accounts, payments, and sales reports, I used D2D. It was worth paying the small distributor percentage on an insignificant number of sales.

HistorySleuth
03-01-2014, 05:09 AM
Yes, at the bottom of my list. Just was thinking now about them. I'll check out D2D. Thanks!

PenTeller
03-01-2014, 01:48 PM
I hope it's not like their app store policy where you have to pay 99 USD per platform to put a program on their app store.

No, just a cut of the RP like Amazon & B&N, which makes me thankful the three of them (among others) exist. Otherwise things might be very different.

Deirdre
03-04-2014, 12:05 PM
iBooks is a little harder than Kindle or Nook, but not terribly difficult. Since I go direct myself (which, frankly, I actually had to as I was an Apple employee at the time), here's the process.

1. You apply to have an iTunes Connect account with Apple. This is free.
2. When approved, you can log in and get iTunes Producer and/or Application Loader. You used to upload with iTunes Producer, but double-clicking on my book package now opens the file with Application Loader.
3. Enter the information about the book into the various screens. (Note that you will need an ISBN.)

http://deirdre.net/assets/application-loader-scr.png

That application will also validate your EPUB package, then upload it.

That's pretty much it.

Also, it's not entirely true that you have to have a Mac to do this. You can certainly use a friend's Mac for this, just remember to keep copies of the package files it generates for later. It stores them in ~/Music/iTunes Producer/Playlists/. Yeah, obviously the architecture was originally designed for music, not books, but there you go.

Old Hack
03-04-2014, 03:16 PM
Deirdre, I'd be grateful if you'd reduce the size of that image: 400 x 400 pixels is the maximum allowed on AW, and it's currently 802 x 761. Thanks.

Deirdre
03-05-2014, 06:34 AM
Deirdre, I'd be grateful if you'd reduce the size of that image: 400 x 400 pixels is the maximum allowed on AW, and it's currently 802 x 761. Thanks.

Done. (Cached copies may serve at the original size until the cache is rebuilt, but the original file is now reduced.)

Sorry, somehow I missed that rule.

girlyswot
03-05-2014, 05:16 PM
There is an alternative if you want to go directly with iTunes but don't have a Mac yourself. You can pay someone else to do the upload and formatting for you. You can set up your own account and manage it from a PC, so it's only the uploading part of the process that has to be outsourced. There are companies that will do it for you for a one-off fee (I've seen $50, but there may be cheaper places than that). If you calculate the Smashwords cut on your book you can work out how many you'll have to sell to make it worth paying the upload fee to go direct. It's certainly cheaper than buying a new macbook!

Celeste Carrara
03-06-2014, 02:52 AM
I didn't see this mentioned, but thought it was important to add. If you use a pen name and do not have a business in that name for your self published books, you cannot upload directly with Apple. You have to use a 3rd party like Smashwords or D2D. I used D2D and it took forever to get my book on the iTunes store, mainly because of the content. But D2D was great during the process and I like using them. But I've literally only had 1 sale of my book on the iTunes store, so I haven't bothered putting the rest of my series there.

HistorySleuth
03-11-2014, 10:09 AM
Celeste, I bought a block of 10 ISBNs as HistorySleuth Publications will that name work? Although I have no problem trying D2D. I don't know anyone who owns a Mac. Wish Apple had some awesome app for my iPad to do it.

Celeste Carrara
03-11-2014, 04:09 PM
Celeste, I bought a block of 10 ISBNs as HistorySleuth Publications will that name work? Although I have no problem trying D2D. I don't know anyone who owns a Mac. Wish Apple had some awesome app for my iPad to do it.

If you have a business in that name with a bank account & you sign up to iTunes in that account name then yes you can use it. You have to use your iTunes account to upload your book on iBooks so whatever name you used to sign up, that's the name that goes as the author. You have to have a bank account in that name to get paid by them. If I were you I would just use D2D & you can use them for B&N & I believe Kobo too. It'll make it so much easier for you.

WriterBN
03-11-2014, 05:50 PM
If I were you I would just use D2D & you can use them for B&N & I believe Kobo too. It'll make it so much easier for you.

Seconded. It's really nice to have one account and get all the sales (or lack thereof) reports in one place. D2D customer support has also been very responsive. They're currently having some delays with publishing to Kobo, but it's not their fault, it's Kobo's.

Deirdre
03-13-2014, 10:32 AM
If you have a business in that name with a bank account & you sign up to iTunes in that account name then yes you can use it.

Even if it's a sole proprietorship?

I remember a friend had trouble getting set up with iTunes a few years ago with either an S-Corp or an LLC.

shelleyo
03-13-2014, 11:03 AM
Even if it's a sole proprietorship?

I remember a friend had trouble getting set up with iTunes a few years ago with either an S-Corp or an LLC.

If your account is registered to John Doe, and your payment information like your bank account is under John Doe, you can't publish a book under the pen name John Smith. And for an account to be registered to a name, it must be set up as a legal entity that allows you to hold bank accounts and addresses under that name. They simply don't allow people to use pen names the way everyone else does, and it's a huge pain.

I use D2D for sheer simplicity, since my business is a sole proprietorship under my real name, and I write under pen names. Pay is monthly at D2D (rather than Smashwords' quarterly payments), and the communication is so, so much better than Smash. If your book is sent back from Apple for changes, D2D lets you know when and why. Smashwords never bothered and acted mystified about why on earth your stuff wasn't in the iTunes store, so books often sat unpublished there for months.

I use D2D for Apple and go direct everywhere else. If I didn't live in the US and couldn't use Nook Press, I'd use them for B&N, too.

HistorySleuth
03-18-2014, 02:30 PM
I've looked at Smashwords, several times. It just seemed so cumbersome. I checked out D2D and it looks very user friendly. No I don't have an actual business bank account so I think you are right. It will be much easier to go the D2D route. Thanks so much for the advice. This is why I love AW, I'd be ignorant about publishing without all you folks. :)

Deirdre
03-29-2014, 04:34 PM
Sorry I missed this. Belated thank you for the answer.


If your account is registered to John Doe, and your payment information like your bank account is under John Doe, you can't publish a book under the pen name John Smith. And for an account to be registered to a name, it must be set up as a legal entity that allows you to hold bank accounts and addresses under that name. They simply don't allow people to use pen names the way everyone else does, and it's a huge pain.

I use D2D for sheer simplicity, since my business is a sole proprietorship under my real name, and I write under pen names. Pay is monthly at D2D (rather than Smashwords' quarterly payments), and the communication is so, so much better than Smash. If your book is sent back from Apple for changes, D2D lets you know when and why. Smashwords never bothered and acted mystified about why on earth your stuff wasn't in the iTunes store, so books often sat unpublished there for months.

I use D2D for Apple and go direct everywhere else. If I didn't live in the US and couldn't use Nook Press, I'd use them for B&N, too.

Thanks for this. I go direct to Apple for stuff under my own name (also direct with Amazon, Kobo, and Nook).

Old Hack
04-07-2014, 11:01 AM
Deirdre, I'd be grateful if you'd reduce the size of that image: 400 x 400 pixels is the maximum allowed on AW, and it's currently 802 x 761. Thanks.


Done. (Cached copies may serve at the original size until the cache is rebuilt, but the original file is now reduced.)

Sorry, somehow I missed that rule.

It's odd that you missed it, because on 2 February I asked you to resize another image in another thread:


Deirdre, we have a maximum image size of 400 x 400 pixels at AW and your two are each a mahoosive 1024 x 769 pixels.

Can you please reduce them in size or delete them? Thanks.

Please make sure this doesn't happen again. Thanks.