Publishing 101: Get Ready to Upload

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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Once you have the interior and cover formatted and saved in PDF, it’s time to upload to CreateSpace.

If this is your first encounter with CreateSpace, you’ll need to set up an account. It takes only a few minutes, a few pieces of information, a password and username. CreateSpace is a division of Amazon. It’s a Print on Demand (POD) service that will print paperback books (both children’s books and novels; both full-colour interior and black and white interior).

After you sign into your account, go to the Member Dashboard (in the drop-down menu under My Account). Here you’ll see the list of books you’re both working on and published. You can navigate your books to find or change information by clicking the title. The Member Dashboard is also where you Add a New Title.

Adding a new title takes only a few minutes when the interior and cover PDFs are ready. Here is the information you’ll need to enter:

  • Project Title
  • Type of Project: Paperback (because CreateSpace also creates Audio CDs, MP3s, DVDs and Video)

Set up Process (Until you get used to adding new titles, choose Guided)

Click Get Started

Enter the following information:

  • Title
  • Subtitle
  • Primary Author (others can be added)
  • Add Contributors (choose Authored by as an author)
  • Is this book part of a series?
  • Series Title; Volume
  • Edition Number (if it applies)
  • Language
  • Publication Date (I just leave this blank and it is automatically set when I publish)

New Title - Step 2

Save & Continue


You have the option of using a Free CreateSpace-Assigned ISBN, but if you do this, it will appear as if CreateSpace is your publisher if anyone goes looking for the ISBN prefix. Readers won’t know because it’s not obvious.

There’s no reason for Canadians to choose the CreateSpace ISBN because we can get them for free. If you plan to publish one book and walk away, then the CreateSpace ISBN may be a good option. If this is just the first of many books, register to get your ISBN prefix.

I choose Provide Your Own ISBN and complete the information (ISBN and Imprint Name).



Choose either Black & White or Full Colour for Interior Type. Then choose either White or Cream for Paper Colour.

This is also where you choose Trim Size, download the formatted template and get an estimate for your book’s manufacturing costs. Choose the trim size first, so the proper template link will appear.

Upload your Book File on this page. It doesn’t at first look as though there is a link available, but if you click the desired text, the browse box will appear. Choose the appropriate file from our hard drive and upload. CreateSpace will run a check on the file. While they’re doing that you can move on to the next step: the cover.

You can wait for the processing of your file to be completed or return to this step to view a digital file of the interior. This is NOT the review process, only a view of how CreateSpace has translated your file into digital format. This may uncover issues with your file which you can fix before submitting your book for a review (which takes more than 24 hours to complete). Spotting issues and correcting them at this step can save time.


As mentioned in a previous post, you can now choose between matte and glossy finish on the cover.

Here is where you’re given the option to upload your own cover (either designed by you or someone else), design a cover using CreateSpace templates or hire someone from CreateSpace to create one.

Once you upload the cover, submit the book (interior and cover) for review. This takes up to 48 hours. You’ll receive an email message when the review is complete.

There are several links that lead to additional information such as Setup Instructions, How to Make a Cover PDF and How to Make an Interior PDF.

Additional Information

After submitting your book for review, it’s time to complete the information that will help identify your book and yourself and provide some basic details to readers.


Standard Distribution has always been free. You can choose to sell your book through, Amazon Europe and CreateSpace eStore. I choose all these distributors.

The Expanded Distribution is now free. It includes Bookstores and Online Retailers, CreateSpace Direct and Libraries & Academic Institutions.

I always choose the Bookstores and Online Retailers: By enabling this channel, you can make your book available to thousands of major online and offline bookstores and retailers, and expand the size of the potential audience for your books.

I have decided NOT to distribute through CreateSpace Direct because if I understand this correctly, it means that any ‘company’ can order copies of my book at wholesale price (the same price I’d pay) and resell it anywhere they want at any price they want.

Here’s the definition CreateSpace provides for this particular distributor: By enabling this channel, you can make your books available to certified resellers such as independent bookstores and book resellers. The CreateSpace Direct program allows eligible resellers to buy books at wholesale prices directly from CreateSpace.

I came to this conclusion when a fellow writer and I discussed used copies of her book for sale on the same page as the advertised book on Amazon. Her book was new. It was so new she knew where the few copies were sold. It was impossible for anyone to own used copies, much less sell them for an inflated price (Original Price: $11.08; Inflated Used Price: $47.94).

Amazon Distribution

Amazon Distribution 02

Has anyone else had this issue with their paperback books on Amazon?

If you provide your own ISBN, you are ineligible to select the Libraries & Academic Institutions distribution. You must use a CreateSpace ISBN.

Save & Continue


Set the price for your paperback on this page. Below the box to enter your list price, CreateSpace provides a minimum price for the title. You should set the list price at least $2.00 above the minimum. The website will calculate the amount of royalties you will receive through each channel. You’ll see that a book sold through CreateSpace eStore generates a higher royalty payment than, and a lot more than Expanded Distribution.

I simply click the Yes box to calculate the prices in other countries.

Save & Continue

Cover Finish

Choose Matte or Glossy finish for your cover. I’m not sure why this option appears twice, but it did during the last book set up.

Save & Continue


Add the following items:

  • Description: This is the blurb from the back cover.
  • BISAC Category: Choose a genre
  • Reading Level
  • Author Biography
  • Book Language
  • Country of Publication
  • Search Keywords: Choose up to five words or phrases separated by commas to help readers find your book.
  • Contains Adult Content?
  • Large Print?

Save & Continue

Publish on Kindle

I don’t take advantage of this option to submit the files to produce an eBook on Kindle Direct Publishing. I prefer to create my own file and upload directly to Kindle.

You’re Done! Now all you have to do is wait for the review process to be completed.

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4 thoughts on “Publishing 101: Get Ready to Upload

  1. I don’t plan going in the Indie route as of yet, but if I do, I’ve bookmarked this page for future reference. Very helpful.

    Thanks for visiting my site. I appreciate it!


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