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How to Make Your Book Accessible for Mor...

How to Make Your Book Accessible for More Readers

Earlier this month I attended the Kennedy Center’s Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability (LEAD) Conference, an event designed to build the capacity of arts and cultural organizations to fully engage people with disabilities. I was drinking from the proverbial firehose on the topic of accessibility, but it got me thinking specifically about accessibility in […]

Pre-orders on KDP and IngramSpark

Pre-orders on KDP and IngramSpark

Original article February 24, 2022; last updated May 13, 2022. When planning your book launch, one consideration is whether to make your book available for pre-order, which simply means that readers can order your book prior to its publication date. In this article, we’ll discuss why you might want to do pre-orders (or not), and […]

Summary of Recent POD Publishing Platfor...

Summary of Recent POD Publishing Platform Changes

There have been some recent changes with the two major print-on-demand (POD) platforms, KDP and IngramSpark, and I’ve been updating my articles related to them. Here I give a summary of changes and then links to the articles. Publishing platform changes to be aware of Here are some of the major changes you might want […]

Word Tip: Style Sets Can Save You Time a...

Word Tip: Style Sets Can Save You Time and Headaches

The Styles function is one of my favorite tools in Microsoft Word. With it, you can assign styles (font, color, size, spacing, etc.) to different text elements—the body text, titles, headings, captions, and so on. I’ve written about Styles before as a way to assess your document’s structure and organization using the Automatic Table of […]

Word Tip: Finding Your Word Count

Word Tip: Finding Your Word Count

Knowing your word count can help you set guideposts to keep on track, identify areas for potential revision, and create a better reading experience for your audience. In MS Word, to find your word count, from the Review menu, choose the Word Count button. You’ll see a pop-up box with your document’s statistics. If you […]

How Arithmetic Can Help You Write

How Arithmetic Can Help You Write

The more I work with books, the more I realize how helpful arithmetic is (yup, just arithmetic—no algebra, geometry, or calculus needed). Whether you have too little content, too much content, or lopsided content, some addition, subtraction, and division (not finding a use for multiplication yet!) can help set guideposts to keep you on track, […]

Word Tip: The Navigation Pane

Word Tip: The Navigation Pane

My client excitedly told me, “I’ve just found the coolest thing in Word: the navigation pane. It has made my life so much easier—you gotta tell everyone about this!” Okay, I got my marching orders! Tip time. Microsoft Word’s navigation pane has been around for a decade, but I’ve only been using it in the […]

Word Tip: Creating En and Em Dashes

Word Tip: Creating En and Em Dashes

In Word you can automatically generate en and em dashes by using the hyphen key and AutoCorrect. (Read more about en and em dashes in this article about common proofreading oversights.) To make an en dash: Type a word (or number/letter character), space, hyphen, space, word (or number/letter). Example: 1990 – 1995  As you move […]

The MS Word Editor: Going beyond Spellch...

The MS Word Editor: Going beyond Spellcheck

If you use Word, you’re probably used to seeing red squiggly underlines for misspelled words and blue double-underlines for incorrect grammar. These appear courtesy of the “Editor” function, aka spellcheck and grammar check. But the Word Editor can help you even more if you let it… Cool Stuff the Word Editor Can Check For Some of […]

KDP and IngramSpark Printing Options

KDP and IngramSpark Printing Options

Originally published April 11, 2019; most recently updated November 23, 2021. This article is part of a series on KDP and IngramSpark (IS) as print-on-demand (POD) platforms for independent authors. For an overview of the two platforms and summary of key issues, read KDP vs. IngramSpark: Which Publishing Platform Is Right for You? Here, we […]

KDP vs. IngramSpark: Which Publishing Pl...

KDP vs. IngramSpark: Which Publishing Platform Is Right for You?

Originally published February 18, 2019; most recently updated November 22, 2021. To keep things simple for first-time authors, I often suggest they stick with Amazon’s ecosystem, using Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) for both ebooks and print books. However, there is another major player in the print-on-demand (POD) space: IngramSpark (IS), which is the POD service from […]

Position Your Book for Top Billing on th...

Position Your Book for Top Billing on the Publishing Stage – Part 2: Behind-the-Scenes Metadata

This two-part series looks at how to position your book for top billing online. In Part 1, we looked at front-of-house elements that make your book appealing to your audience: cover design, title, description. In Part 2, we cover the behind-the-scenes elements that make your book findable: metadata. You’re at a Broadway show. In the […]