Learn about using Smashwords and other online services or ebook professionals to convert your Word or RTF manuscript into an ebook.
- [Instructor] Do you need an International Standard Book Number for your ebook? What, what is an International Standard Book Number? Why that's an ISBN. An ISBN number, you know, that thing that you see in the title pages of books. It is a 13 digit number, and it identifies that title. It's kind of like a book Social Security Number in the US. The answer is if you want to resell it at most online retailers, like Kindle bookstore, or the iBook store, or the Kobo store, no, you do not need it, it's optional. However, if you happen to have one, they'll take it.
And I personally think it's a great idea to get your own ISBN number for all of your own books. And you'll need a separate ISBN number, by the way, for both the print and the digital versions of the same title. You'll have to get an ISBN number for each format. The one place to buy it in the United States is Bowker, that's the name of the company. I don't know how they ended up being the people to do this, but that's what they are, and if you go to myidentifiers.com it will redirect you to Bowker.
If you have any questions, they have a wonderful customer support number. I've called them before. But essentially, a single ISBN number is a lot of money, 125 bucks, but you could always get 10 ISBN numbers and they're cheaper that way. Some services, especially ones like lulu.com and the ones that I talked about in a previous video, online services that will take your manuscript and distribute it as an ebook for you, will assign you one of their own ISBN numbers that you can keep and use wherever, if you like.
That's kind of nice. But again, I think that if you're putting this amount of work and effort into creating an ebook, why not give it your own ISBN number? So you just purchase it here, and they give you a list and then you add it to your book. Now, when you upload your ebook to the different sites, it'll say what is the ISBN number, optional, and then you just paste it in. If you are in the UK, you can't use Bowker. Bowker, I believe, is just for the US and maybe a couple other countries, not quite sure, but I know that different countries have different requirements for the ISBN, and sometimes they're free and sometimes they're not, so you need to search by your own country.
But I know that the UK uses a service called Nielsen, not the same as the Nielsen people who measure TV shows in the US, and they just opened up an online store, nielsenisbnstore.com. You can go ahead and purchase it there. If you're in Canada, they do have a Canadian version of the ISBN number, but first, you have to create an ISBN Canada account. So there's a few little hoops that you have to jump through in order to get an ISBN number. It is optional, but I recommend it.
- Finding, downloading, and reading free ebooks
- Choosing the right format for your ebook
- Building reflowable EPUBs and fixed-layout EPUBs
- Using tools like Word, Sigil, calibre, Jutoh, Pages, PubCoder, and InDesign
- Adding animation and interactivity such as clickable buttons
- Creating ebooks for the Kindle
- Learning the pros and cons of PDF ebooks
- Creating reflowable and multitouch ebooks with iBooks Author