Like the iPhone, Netbook, iPad, Mac and Android applications market, self-publishing an e-book is still a growing and changing entity and budding authors need to be aware of what it takes to publish a great book.
All of the articles and folks I spoke to emphasis one thing and it may seem simple, but incredibly important that your work is good. Like other product manufacturers what you are selling has to be a good product. If reading your book is not interesting or engaging no one will buy it, so have a great idea, make sure your writing is specific to the genre and don’t try to write one book that covers fiction and non-fiction. E-book lists give the readers a taste before they buy and you want your taste to be a mouthful!
Create an interesting cool cover for your book. Not many people realize that an e-book needs have a cover like a print book, and the best most professional cover art you can add to your book is going to make an impact. Cover art for an eBook needs to look good small (icons and thumbnails) and stand out among the crowd. You might want to work with a professional graphics designer to get a good image, for an e-book you just need an image with decent resolutions but not so that it sticks out as a sore thumb, there might be a great book that is the next Moby Dick but no one read it because of bad cover art.
Don’t try to recover all the hourly wage you missed while writing your book, price your e-book inexpensively. Making a killing in the e-book market is not going to be with one book sale, the best results show that being in the $0.99 to $2.99 range is most successful, plus you avoid (okay you didn’t hear this from me first) the higher royalty costs from Amazon for Kindle e-books, 70% , applies to e-books between $2.99 and $9.99. You might want to go somewhere between to be head above the flood of lower priced books.
Run away from companies, publishing or otherwise that do not allow you control over setting the price of your e-book. Deciding what you are going to price your book for is a critical part of the process. What route are you seeking for the sales of the e-book, wide distribution and maximum exposure or maybe you have new ideas or emerging technology, then you should price it higher. As the author you should be the one to decide what route to go.
Lastly marketing is all about creating a buzz about your e-book. E-book publishing has made the marketing of a book the job of the author, along with self promotion to get wider audiences and readers. Before in the print world an author had an agent, a publicist, and a publishing house to do most of this work for them, but now self-publishing has opened the door to marketing for authors and their own books. You need to learn and use social media applications to get your e-book on to computers, iPads, Kindles, Nooks and other devices. You need to use Facebook, MySpace and Twitter to gain followers and readers. The largest part of this that most authors find daunting is marketing is not a one off situation; it has to be maintained almost daily to get the word out.