How To Publish Your Book For Free and Reap Royalties For Years To Come!

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writer

So, you’re thinking of new ways to generate more income for your business, right?

You have your book done or have been wanting to write a book about your business/expertise or just as a hobby for some extra money but you dread having to find a good publisher who will market your book to their lists and take more than half of your royalties OR they make you pay beforehand, so you’re now out of money before you make any… (don’t get me wrong, nothing wrong with publishers, if you’d rather have one then go for it!)

WELL, good news for you.

You don’t have to worry about getting a publishing deal or paying anyone upfront to get your physical copy of your book out there for everyone to see it.

Gone are the days having to find a publisher and now you can do it yourself with a site called Createspace.

CreateSpace is a DIY (Do It Yourself) publishing platform which is a sister site of Amazon.

They will distribute your book for you as well as publish and handle all shipping and handling for you while only taking a cut AFTER you sell a book and the rest is YOUR profit.

When you sign up for free, you will then need to put in your tax info and set up your payment info (direct deposit or checks) and then you can start submitting your finished books.

The platform is very easy, and they have a guided tour for you to go through every step of the way. Also, you can click on each link that says, ‘what is this?’ for more info on each little task you need to fill out.

Once you log in, you can click on ‘add new title’ and put in the name of your project and click on ‘paperback’ and hit ‘guided’ get started button.

On to the next page which will look like this:

createspace

Put in your book title then where is states the primary author, you can use a pen name/ghost name.

The pen name has to match the name of the author that’s written in your book of course.

You can have as many pen names as you like and no one will ever know it’s you, but all of your royalties will be paid to your one main account.

If you’re going to have more additions to your first book, then add the number 1 in edition number.

That’s all you need to fill out for this screen, so scroll down and hit save and continue.

The next screen is for an ISBN number because every published book needs to have one.

Good for you, though, you can get a free ISBN number from CreateSpace so then click on the first option and submit a free ISBN number.

Next, you have the interior screen where you will pick between black and white or colored pages (for fonts and pictures) and white or cream colored pages. Then click on upload your book file. CreateSpace is very helpful as they let you download formatted templates to help you format your book for CreateSpace.

The one you’re probably going to use is the 6 x 9 formatted template.

You can get a formatted template by going here:

https://forums.createspace.com/en/community/docs/DOC-1323

Usually, you wouldn’t want colored pages so you would pick black and white and most likely white pages to keep the costs down, but that is totally up to you.

You should have your book written out in either a doc or pdf file (using Microsoft Word or Open Office) as those are most commonly used, just find the manuscript from your hard-drive and upload it.

Go ahead and leave the ‘bleed’ option on default and hit ‘save.’

So, I know for sure you have the option to buy a physical copy of your book to check for errors or just to have a copy of your book, because you know it’s going to feel good holding it in your hands HAHA!!

BUT, you don’t need to, you can check for mistakes with the free previewer which will say launch interior reviewer. You can read through your book and check for any mistakes using that and change whatever you need to.

Simple stuff.

Next is designing your book cover unless you already have one designed. If you don’t, you can get a professional book cover made at Fiverr for really cheap, but if you’re like me and want to do things yourself then you can make a free cover inside of CreateSpace using one of their templates.

They give you the option to choose a matte or glossy finish. (They even ask you a dozen times!) Unless you want fewer royalties then it would be in your best interest to choose glossy. Then click on build your cover online.

They give you five pages of free designs to use, and it will look like this:

covers

You can think of these design templates as a starting point for the cover because you can change just about everything to make your cover unique and exactly the way you want it to look.

After you pick a template, you’ll be on this next screen to fill in all of your book info that will be on the cover.

You have the option of choosing a different image from their database of free photos and you can disable some of the text so it won’t show up. So, if you don’t want to add an author bio or an author picture you don’t have to have it show up there, because if you’re using a pen name like I usually do then you’re not going to want to put that info there.

The list of things you need to do on this page are pretty self-explanatory and they guide you through the entire process. Here’s where you should be:

tasks

Just go through each task until it’s all complete. You will know when they’re all complete once you get the green circle at the end of each task.

After your cover is approved and they start reviewing your book to make sure everything looks good you’ll be heading over to the ‘sales and marketing’ screen where you can check off the places that you want CreateSpace to distribute your book.

I believe you have six options, which are three Amazon options and three bookstores and/libraries = lots of free distribution. The last option of distribution will require you to have a BISAC code, all you have to do is click on the link there in that option to receive a free BISAC code then go back and get the free distribution from the last option.

You will also need to choose the best category that your book falls into.

You can price your book now and calculate the royalties by going here:

Royalty Calculator and check out more info on how royalties are distributed.

Some books are priced at $9.97, and you still get a nice 35% – 40% royalty per sale.

That is pretty much all to it for publishing your physical books on CreateSpace.

78 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Alicia,

    Thanks for writing about this. Who won’t want to publish for free and reap royalties for years? 🙂

    Using Createspace looks simple enough from what you have written here, but I don’t know, is it really free as in 100% free?

    Are there extra charges not mentioned or something like that? It’s just hard to comprehend that it’s really free and not just for books but for CDs and DVDs.

    And regarding the “made on-demand when customers order”, won’t that make the cost of printing each copy much more than the traditional cost of mass printing?

    Anyways, since it’s owned by Amazon, it’s surely legit and worth checking out.

    I guess I have to read up on it some more to fully understand how it all works, but thanks for bringing this to the fore for me and others here.

    • Hi PJ,

      Thanks for the questions.

      In all honesty, I haven’t published any books yet, but am working on a creative journal for adults at the moment.

      Creative journals, adult coloring books and word search/sodoku books are all the rage this year so I’m leaning towards those.

      You wouldn’t need any kind of following, your books would be distributed for free on Amazon and other places so your book will be seen and distributors may like your book and want to sell it as well.

      I just really wanted to get this post out there in case people didn’t know about this site. I’ve been through all of the steps within createspace, just haven’t actually published yet.
      Alicia Thibadeau recently posted…Viddyoze 2.0 Video Animation Just Leveled Up!My Profile

  2. Hello Alicia,

    I have been thinking about this process for some time. I was recently at a marketing conference where Mike Koenigs spoke about publishing his first book.

    One of my favorite things I from his talk was the impact a book has on a person over a business card. Imagine handing a prospective client a book about a pain point they are having. They are sure to remember you.

    Another thing he pointed out was his first book was written with his phone. He spoke to the phone and it wrote it for him. No keyboard needed.

    This is a great overview of Createspace, thank you for the valuable research.
    Adam D. Mason recently posted…You Don’t Know What You Don’t KnowMy Profile

  3. Hi Alicia,
    Its very awesome for me stumbling on this piece in kingged.com.

    Its relieving having such platform that enables one to publish and market hard copies for FREE!

    I know Amazon Kindle but have not heard about CreateSpace before now. Well, I guess its time to be practical 😉

    Thanks for sharing this piece!

  4. Well, its good to know about CreateSpace. Beginner writers and publishers can leverage on the features of this platform for promotion.

    I have a friend who has wanted to publish a book online, I guess I should suggest this platform for her!

    • Hi Paul,

      Great question and although I don’t have any posts to show I do have an example I can show you.

      Like I said in an earlier post, creative journals are all the rage this year among a few others…

      If you type in creative journals into amazon and check the first one that pops up on the list (I’m not sure if I’m allowed to link out to amazon) you’ll notice it’s called, “Wreck This Journal” and check the seller rank it’s at #778 in books.

      Now, not sure if you’re familiar with the daily book sales you can expect to make at seller rank # but this person is selling the book at $12.14 and selling 100-120 books daily so that’s $1,214+ a day if my math is correct.

      I hope that’s a good enough example for you, you can also check other seller ranks, the lower the seller rank the more they’re making.

  5. Hi, thanks for revealing this platform. I have always thought there is no other platform like Amazon Kindle, now I am wrong 😉

    The features and benefits of using CreateSpace are intriguing and for the intending publisher. I will give it chance to maximize these benefits!

  6. Well, I guess this step-by-step approach to publishing a book with CreateSpace would be helpful to a lot of writers who are yet to hone their publishing skills.

    The platform seems to be an easy traction for free publication!

    Well, thanks Alicia for this review and for guiding us on how to make the post of this publishing platform.

    Indeed, making the most of this platform will help us reap tremendous royalties in the years to come!

  7. If one gets an platform that is reliable and dependable in online publishing then it makes good sense to go for it.

    CreateSpace seems to me like a platform that can be explored for harness online publishing without stress.

    It is helpful that we are guided on how to make the most of CreateSpace.

    This simplicity of this guide or review makes it admirable for online success!

  8. Hi Alicia,

    Thanks for this post. I didn’t know about this Createspace DIY (Do It Yourself) publishing platform before reading this.

    I will try this out if the time comes to write a book.

    But it’s still surprising that this isn’t as popular as it should be, since it’s owned by Amazon.

    Why do you think that is?

  9. I have never heard of this website before, but thank you for sharing such information about this useful website.

    I am not a published author yet, but I ill be sure to check out this platform to see how to create and publish an ebook, whether it is free or not.

    Ebooks are great ways to provide information and get your name out in the world. If the book is good enough, you can make your way to become a known authority in your niche. Great information.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Lawrence Berry recently posted…3 Long-Term Benefits Of Aquatic TherapyMy Profile

        • Here’s what I wrote about creative journals:

          Great question and although I don’t have any posts to show I do have an example I can show you.

          Like I said in an earlier post, creative journals are all the rage this year among a few others…

          If you type in creative journals into amazon and check the first one that pops up on the list (I’m not sure if I’m allowed to link out to amazon) you’ll notice it’s called, “Wreck This Journal” and check the seller rank it’s at #778 in books.

          Now, not sure if you’re familiar with the daily book sales you can expect to make at seller rank # but this person is selling the book at $12.14 and selling 100-120 books daily so that’s $1,214+ a day if my math is correct.

          I hope that’s a good enough example for you, you can also check other seller ranks, the lower the seller rank the more they’re making.
          Alicia Thibadeau recently posted…Viddyoze 2.0 Video Animation Just Leveled Up!My Profile

  10. Hi Alicia:

    Great post with very specific info (including great images) showing just how easy it is to publish with Createspace.

    Everyone should understand that they get the advantage of Amazon’s tremendous promotional capacity and authority status (Amazon has great credibility as a trusted vendor.

    That is because the more sales you make as an author, the more money they make as commissions.

    Its a WIN-WIN relationship.

    In many but not all cases it is wise to have a KINDLE version of your physical hardcover book.

    Whether you have one or two versions Amazon will promote your book and books that sell well get even more promotion.

    Immediately before and after publication all authors should utilize promotional opportunities with book blog sites (there are thousands).

    Consult my Book Blog Directory List as a source of book blogs that cover subjects relevant to your particular focus.

    Promoting your hardcover or digital book through book blogs on an extensive sustained basis will lead to more sales on Amazon (often the blogger will be an Amazon affiliate).

    Amazon in turns gives ADDED FEATURED PROMOTION to books that are selling well.

    WOW!! These resources and techniques can be very powerful even for COMPLETE NOVICES AND FIRST TIME AUTHORS.

    Get out there and publish!!
    Robert A Kearse recently posted…Make Money Online With 15 Powerful And Profitable Steps In A Daily Work RoutineMy Profile

  11. Hi Alicia,
    I myself never try createspace but have published some kindle ebooks and even if the royalty amount is not big, it’s a one-time work so, as you said, this is a good way to generate money. If I may add, it’ll better to add some keyword research to increase the amount of visitors (or targeted traffic)
    regards

    Ivana

  12. Hello Alicia,

    Thanks for writing about this.

    Createspace is really great opportunity for writers, bloggers or even anyone who wants to publish without spending money upfront.

    Do you have links to recent articles containing real life example of everyday people who have successfully published and profited using Createspace?

  13. Hi Alicia,

    Thank you for providing this information. It looks very easy to use and a real bargain.

    I know my Mother who has dementia wrote a bunch of poems for about a year to help her grieve the loss of my father. It sounds depressing but I always wanted to publish the book for her.

    I thought about Kindle, but now after this article I am thinking why not a physical book?

    Thanks for the detailed instructions on how to use this service.

    Take care,

    John