Self-publishing: The Tools of the Trade

Before getting started on this daunting journey, I asked around for some feedback on what tools were absolute requirements and what ones I could do without. My feeling is that the more I can keep my costs down, the quicker I will begin to see a return on my investment.

So I kept hearing about “Scrivener” and its many applications, both as a composition tool and as a method of converting files to ePub and other e-book formats. But could I do it for free if I just worked harder? Was a $40 software tool just keeping me 20 $2.99 e-book downloads at 70% commission away from a profit? Was I overthinking it?

Yes, I could compose in Word or Google Docs and then just copy and paste my files into the text editors at Smashwords, Lulu or Kindle. Or I could save my Word file as HTML and import it into a free e-reading program called Calibre and then save it as ePub. It’s clunky, but it’s free. But how it will spit out to all the various platforms out there is unpredictable. Keep it simple, I was told.

So, armed with a 20% off coupon, I sprung for the tool I’ve been promised will make my life easier. I look forward to trying it on my next first draft composition after I climb the learning curve to convert my existing works. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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