Upload Kindle eBook to Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, overview

This is one of those tasks that looks and sounds harder than it is.  But... despite the fact that it is quite easy if you are prepared, it's even easier to cause yourself real trouble if you aren't prepared.

There is no person... and no software... to stop you if you click Publish before your book is ready.

There is no "are you sure",  no "review",  and no  "edit mode", as you might expect.

Your book immediately goes into Publish mode and is  locked down and grayed-out on your Bookshelf... and it will stay that way for the next few days.

You can't touch it, edit it, or even delete it until it goes "Live" and is released from lock-down.

In the meantime, your incorrect book may even be available for sale in the Amazon catalog for a few days before you are able to get to it to correct it.

That will, quite likely, embarrass you, and may cost you money and customers, as well.

Have I scared you sufficiently?

Ok...let's talk about how to do it right:

It's a good idea to do a practice run before it's actually time to publish.  That way, you will know what to expect and have your answers ready before you actually go to the Amazon DTP.

Click the link below to do a practice run AND create a Sample to proof and be sure your Kindle book is formatted correctly.

How to Create and Download a Kindle sample

The only difficult thing about the whole publishing process is to get in the middle of an upload and find questions you can't answer... so it's best to do some planning before you even go to the Amazon DTP.

All the instructions are there... but, again, that takes some time to read and understand, and can more easily be done in a practice run.

Look at the screen shot below and locate one of the most important things on it... the button at the bottom of the page {Save as Draft}.  That's your lifesaver and the reason you don't need to get in a rush, because you won't lose the work you have done thus far.

Other things it's good to think about ahead of time are "Keywords" and "Categories".

Keywords is easy enough to understand, but it's best to think about and create a list keywords to find your book when someone searches on that word.

That's not so difficult if you have time to think about it... not so easy off the top of your head when you are in the middle of an upload.

But Categories... that's where your book will be displayed in the Amazon Catalog... that's a lot more difficult.

The main reason it is so difficult is that you can't make up your own categories. You just have to choose one from the list.

You must choose at least one, or the Amazon DTP won't allow you to Publish until you do.

You are allowed 5* Categories... and, unless you have better luck than most other publishers do, you won't find 5* that fit... so you just have to look through the list of categories and do the best you can.

*Note: Amazon has recently changed the Categories allowed to only two Categories for new ebooks.

Many complaints have been heard about the lack of appropriate categories, so one day maybe it will be improved, but right now we have to do the best we can with the available list.

The only way to know what Categories are available is to go there and go through the list.  It's a pretty complex list... so you have to browse around and select first one, then another, and click to open to read the list.

How to get to the Amazon KDP Dashboard

When you have proofed your book and are absolutely sure it's ready to be published, click the link below to go to the Amazon DTP Dashboard, where you can upload your book.

The first screen invites you to Add a New Title:

We click the {Add a new title} Button, and are presented with the Amazon DTP publish pages.

The Amazon Publish procedure is actually a two step, therefore, a two-page, process.

1. Your Book    and   2. Rights & Pricing

The first Page contains basic information about your book.  Some of this information is required, and if you don't fill in those fields, you will never see the second Page.

Both pages are displayed side-by-side in the graphic.

If you fail to answer all required questions, and hit the button {Save and Continue}, you'll get an error message and a red box will appear around the question you did not answer.

But once you answer all the questions on the first page, the second page will open.

This article has been an overview of the publishing process.  For detailed information, please see the next article in this series:

Upload Kindle eBook to Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, Step-by-Step

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