Increasing the “Look Inside” Preview on Amazon

Look Inside the BookOne of the best marketing tools self-published authors have is the “Look Inside” feature on Amazon. If things go well, your title, cover, and book description will catch the attention of a reader who eagerly clicks “Look Inside” to read a sample of your writing, and they see…

…nothing more than your copyright page and table of contents? Well, that’s not very helpful, is it? I’ve honestly never known anyone to buy a book based on the “Look Inside” preview of a copyright page. This is especially problematic if you’re hoping to send your book out for reviews or list it on a site that vets books for quality (ahem…IU, anyone?). From formatting to tone, to grammar usage and typos, the first pages of your story show it all. But what if they aren’t displayed? Continue reading

How to Plan a Pre-order Deadline

timerOne of the biggest challenges of the pre-ordering process on Amazon is the dreaded deadline. If you’re not accustomed to hitting deadlines, or if they’ve been a kind of self-imposed suggestion for you (not that I’m judging), it can be especially hard to do it with a book. A lot of moving parts must come together before you can hit the publish button. Also, there are consequences for not meeting this date: you lose your Amazon pre-ordering privileges for a year, and you could end up disappointing a bunch of potential readers. Continue reading

How to Reduce Image Sizes Using Outlook

Sometimes smaller is just better.

Sometimes smaller is just better.

Here at IU, we ask people not to send photos over 500kb. We’re all volunteers, and we have small, free email accounts. Therefore, large attachments cause a problem. If you’ve ever received a failure message from us stating “mailbox full” – that’s because someone sent us a large attachment which filled our mailbox to capacity. Naughty author!

We’ve run a couple of articles on this: Tutorial: Resizing Pictures and  How to Resize a Photo – Mac Edition. If you don’t have the software programs mentioned in those tutorials, here’s an easy way to make an image smaller when you need to email it to someone. (In fact, you can even use this to email images to yourself if you need to resize it for something you’re doing.) It’s super easy, too. Continue reading

Calibre for Readers – Part 1

calibre logoA few months ago I did a post about using the free program Calibre to create a Kindle compatible eBook file. That barely scratched the surface of the program’s capabilities. In this series of posts I’m going to discuss some of those other uses with a focus on how the program might be used by a reader. This won’t be a full blown tutorial. Instead I’ll make some suggestions and point you in the right direction. Obviously before you can do any of this you’ll need to download and install the proper version of Calibre for your computer. Continue reading