Publishing 101: Production Schedule

Publishing 101This is one in a series of posts entitled Publishing 101: Draft to Book in 30 Days. To learn more about this challenge, visit the Publishing 101 page, where all links regarding this topic will be listed as they become available.

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With my manuscript off to the editor, one might think I can sit back and take a break. Not so. There’s still plenty of work that needs to be completed before I publish my novella Fowl Summer Nights.

Let me introduce you to my Production Schedule. I create one for each book I plan to publish. It keeps me on track and doesn’t let me forget an important step. It also holds pertinent information for this book in one place, so I don’t have to open multiple files to access it.

Below is the production schedule for Fowl Summer Nights. As I complete each item I write DONE beside it. If a small piece of information was needed to complete this step (such as ISBN), I record it. I sometimes note what stage I’m at in the step.

Production Schedule

Fowl Summer Nights

Diane Lynn McGyver

1) Final Edit: Manuscript sent to editor, February 10, 2014

2) Establish front and back matter

  • title page: DONE: Submitted along with request for CIP
  • copyright page
  • dedication
  • prologue: N/A
  • a short clip of an exciting scene
  • table of contents
  • biography
  • picture for biography: DONE: Use recent headshot used with recent book.

3) Request ISBN: DONE: Completed February 10, 2014

  • Paperback: 978-1-927625-13-2
  • CreateSpace generated 10 digit ISBN: 1927625130
  • eBook: 978-1-927625-14-9

4) Request CIP: Applied for CIP on February 10, 2014. Send a reminder on February 24, 2014.

5) Chose book dimensions: DONE: 5.5 inches wide x 8.5 inches tall

6) What colour paper for the inside: white or cream? DONE: Cream

7) Decide on inside design

  • font for front and back matter
  • font for novel text
  • font and style for chapter titles
  • font for headers
  • drop caps for chapter start (do you want them?)
  • breaks in scene design
  • font style for page number

8) Cover design (cover 1400×2100 for Kindle and Smashwords)

  • title: DONE: Fowl Summer Nights
  • title font
  • author name: DONE: Diane Lynn McGyver
  • author name font
  • one sentence blurb, front cover
  • front cover sentence font
  • debut novel?:
  • back cover blurb
  • back cover blurb font and style
  • price (do you want price on cover?): DONE: No price on cover
  • genre: DONE: Novella-Contemporary-Humour
  • spine material: N/A spine too small

9) Tag words: DONE: humour, novella, chickens, retirement, seniors, Canada Post, eggs, chicks, Canadian author, fowl, Nova Scotia, Canada, 4-H, Kijiji addiction, hobby

10) Format manuscript for CreateSpace

11) Upload material (interior and cover) to CreateSpace

12) Review digital proof

13) Order two proof paperback copies

14) Edit proof

13) Make corrections on CreateSpace and Approve

14) Order copies from CreateSpace

15) Format and Publish as an eBook (Decide whether or not to enroll book in KDP for 90 days)

  • Smashwords
  • Kindle
  • Kobo
  • Ganyx

16) Once the new eBook and paperback version appear online, go to Author Central in Amazon and ensure it is listed with your other books. You’ll have to do this for your author central pages in the US, UK, DE and FR.

NOTE: In Canada we can’t publish directly to Barnes & Noble and a few others. We can publish directly to the ones listed above. If you live in the United States, you can add whichever markets you have access to.

NOTE: I note the minimum cover dimensions for Kindle and Smashwords, so I don’t have to look elsewhere for the numbers. The numbers—1400×2100—are really a guideline. Although you don’t want a mammoth image, the minimum across the shortest side must be no smaller than 1400 pixels.

ONE MORE NOTE: I didn’t mention anything about obtaining an EIN (Employer Identification Number) or completing a W-8BEN form because you don’t have to do this every time you publish. I took care of it two years ago. If you live in Canada and sell books (either eBooks or paperbacks) through an American company (, CreateSpace or Smashwords), you need an EIN, so Uncle Sam won’t keep 30% of your royalties.

It takes only a few minutes to obtain an EIN and a few more to complete the forms to send to distributing outlets, so I highly advice you to set aside time to do this. You can read all about it in my Canadians, Stop Paying 30% to the IRS post. UPDATE (November 2014): Canadians no longer need an EIN to claim the 30%. Read: Update on Canada Tax Information with the United States.

The Highlander's Stolen Bride (The Sutherland Legacy Book 2) by [Knight, Eliza]
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As you can see I’ve already completed Steps 3 and 4, requesting an ISBN and CIP. On Monday I remembered it took ten business days to receive a CIP, so I put in the request immediate. I need it for the paperback version of Fowl Summer Nights. Because I forgot about this, the earliest I’ll receive it is February 24th, at which time the CreateSpace proof will probably be in the mail.

Although I prefer to have the CIP data in the proof, I can easily modify the copyright page with the information before I approve the proof.

You must have an ISBN to request a CIP, so get that first to avoid any headaches.

If you want to learn more about ISBN and CIP, check out this post—Getting the Numbers: ISBN & CIP—that details the steps in obtaining them in Canada.

In Canada ISBNs are free, but they are very costly in the United States. One is $125, but if you buy 1000, it’s only $1000. I say only $1000 because if you bought them one at a time, you’d buy only eight before you reached $1000. If I lived there, I’d join a few other writers, create our own ‘publishing company’ and buy 1000 between us. It would be more cost effective.

CIP is available in Canada only. You can apply only if you are a Canadian author and if your book is published in Canada.

That’s my production schedule for all books published by Quarter Castle Publishing. In the coming days as I complete each section of the Production Schedule I’ll provide more details.

This completes this step in the Draft to Book in 30 Days challenge.

Next Post Publishing 101: Establishing Front and Back Matter

If you found this information helpful, please consider buying me a cup of tea ($1.50) as if we had chatted at a cafe and I shared this with you. [Payment is through PayPal.]

Are you looking for an unbiased, honest evaluation of your writing? Check out First 5,000 Words Evaluation.

2 thoughts on “Publishing 101: Production Schedule

    • One slice at a time is a good way to approach the production schedule. Once you go through this once, you can use many things in the next one, like the copyright page and author biography.


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