Print Books for Beginners is Live


Obviously I couldn’t keep publishing a book called CreateSpace for Beginners now that CreateSpace is going away and being replaced by KDP Print. And I figured that it no longer made sense to focus on just one print distributor exclusively, especially since about 2/3 of that book related to formatting and not to one specific distributor.

So CreateSpace for Beginners is now Print Books for Beginners and is live or will be live everywhere except Google within the next few days. (I don’t publish my non-fiction to Google because of their habit of basically letting a clever person read your entire book for free.)

If you already had CreateSpace for Beginners no need to buy this one.

I did publish the print version of the book through KDP Print and didn’t have issues during the approval process although I know others have. I used the KDP Print interior and cover templates, which probably helped. They look about the same as the CreateSpace versions with the exception of the file name on the interior files. It is nice that the titles will be linked more easily since I always had to email to get my author names that used initials to link. But I’m still bitter about the extra 30 days until payment on print sales.

Once the changes to AMS settle down you can expect a new book there as well. But I’m not pulling the old one because it’s still at least 90% accurate at this point. Although note that AMS is no longer AMS it’s now Amazon Advertising and the website addresses have changed to reflect that. If you access AMS through your KDP dashboard you won’t even notice that change.

That’s self-publishing for you. You never know what will change, but you can be guaranteed something will.

So Long CreateSpace. Hello KDP Print.

Last night when I logged onto CreateSpace there was a big banner across the top announcing the transition to KDP Print. And people have reported getting the emails about it today. So it’s happening. CreateSpace is going away and all books will be moved to KDP accounts.

On one hand, it’s great because it centralizes reporting.

I also want to emphasize how easy it should be for most authors to do this. All I had to do was click the button to make the transition, provide my KDP account email and log in (since they’re different unlike with ACX), and then click a button. It took less than five minutes for my sixty books to move over and Amazon made a good attempt at linking the ebook and print versions.

So for most of you, that’s all it’s going to be. Something that will take five minutes to do. I saw someone offering to do this for pay this morning and it made me highly cranky because it really is so damned easy to do that you’ll put more effort into hiring and paying someone to do this for you than just doing it yourself.

I do recommend having a list of all of your print titles and their ISBNs before you do the transfer so you can check for your books just to be sure. But that’s about all it will be for most folks.

Now. Having said that…

I did run into issues and still have a few. So I’m going to tell you what they were and how to fix them if I know how.

1. I had renamed some of my books and that created linking problems. Because of how things work I had one ebook version under the new title and two paperback versions, one under the original title and one under the new one. Without fail they linked the original paperback to the ebook version.

It’s easy enough to fix this yourself. There is a … next to the paperback version of each book listing. Click on that and choose “Unlink Books”. This will unlink that version of the paperback from the ebook.

You can then link the appropriate paperback by clicking on “Link Existing Paperback” in the paperback section and giving the ASIN/ISBN number for the book. (I had these in my Access database which made it simpler for me, but they also show right there in the book listing. You can also search by name but I preferred to use ASIN/ISBN to make sure the right book linked.)

2. I also had both black and white and color versions of some of my non-fiction titles. In that case one version of each title seems to have been lost or supressed. They’ve told me it’s just that the titles didn’t transfer over yet, but what’s weird is that I was intermittently seeing both versions linked to the ebook. So sometimes I’d see the $12.95 version, sometimes I’d see the $17.95 version.

This is still an issue for me. I was able to unlink the wrong version on one of them and then find the other to link via search but that made the wrong version disappear from my dashboard. I suspect I’ll be following up with them again on this one.

3. One of my books didn’t come over. They’ve said it might take 2-3 days for all the books to port over but since 58 made it and one didn’t I’m not holding my breath for it to show up. Fortunately the book still shows as for sale but I suspect I’ll be chasing them down for that one as well as the missing b&w/color ones.

4. My CreateSpace sales ported over to my account dashboard as print sales. Now, what’s weird with mine is that I gained about 140 paperback sales for the month. As much as I wish those sales existed, I don’t think they do. So I have an email into them about that as well. And I’m not seeing how to identify expanded distribution sales which it looks like I lost yesterday when none of the 27th’s sales came over.

It also looks like KDP Print reporting is substantially delayed compared to CS reporting. That pretty much screws daily AMS monitoring for anyone who has heavy print sales like I do. Still thinking through how to handle this one.


Also, keep in mind that they just bought themselves another 30 days before they have to pay out on print sales. So any sales through KDP Print will pay after 60 days not 30 days from month end. (Surprising really that they hadn’t done this before since it makes them lots of money to hold those funds an extra thirty days but man do I hate them for it. Way to fuck with my budget Amazon.)

I think those are all the big issues I noticed. Someone in another group was asking if we should all move to IngramSpark instead and I would say no. Amazon, being Amazon, will sometimes list books available through IS as not available or not available for a few days. So if your paperback books sell on Amazon you’ll want to be listed with KDP Print.

You may want to consider using IngramSpark for expanded distribution, though. Or even Nook Press for listing on Barnes & Noble.

IngramSpark requires you use your own ISBNs, so for those in the U.S. who have to pay a fortune for ISBNs it may not be worth it.

Nook Press appears to provide ISBNs for you and it’s something I think I may be exploring in the next month or so. If you go that route I’ve been told you can email Nook and ask them to suppress the KDP Print version from their site so that the Nook version is the one that’s purchased.

I can tell you this did not make me happy yesterday. But one thing that’s certain with indie publishing: There is always going to be change. Some of it will be highly disruptive. Some of it will just feel like it is. All you can do is roll with the punches and keep moving forward.

Or so I tell myself.