Why design an ebook?
I wanted to include a special offer for new subscribers to my blog. This is called a lead magnet. I decided to create an ebook based on several of my updated blog posts. I chose five favourite posts from this blog, Craft of Writing.
First up I had to write the content for my book, which I did using a microsoft word file. I decided to call the book “An Introduction to Writing Craft.”
The Basic Format for an ebook
Next I had to research the structure of an ebook. The format I chose to follow for this, was a three-part one composed of: 1. An Introduction 2. The Content Chapters 3. A Call to Action.
In the introduction I explain to the reader why I am writing the ebook; I give an overview the contents, and discuss why I have chosen these five posts.
The five content chapters comprise the five chosen posts. The main theme of these chapters is what I like to call the “macro skills” involved in writing a novel. Be advised that this term is one I have appropriated for my own purposes, in order to explain what I see as the two parameters of novel writing. Both parameters are important: Macro issues to do with the whole text, and the micro issues of words, sentence structure and punctuation within the work.
The third CTA chapter was devised so that I could learn from my readers how useful the book is, and how subsequent eBooks might be improved or changed.
I chose a potential picture for the cover of the book. The cover for the ebook became a simple red “default” template.
The Technical Terms
This was my first foray into creating an ebook. I had to teach myself the technical jargon involved, having lost the support of my digital expert friend, due to illness during last year. The first thing I discovered was that some people choose not to distinguish between the two formats: eBooks and PDF files.
PDF stands for “Portable Document Format”, and is the most well-known file type.
EPub stands for “Electronic Publication,” and is up to its 3rd major update. It is the more flexible ebook format. Literally every device can handle ePub, except Kindles.
Ebooks are created in a format that changes shape according to the device you read it on.
Learning Digital Skills
I decided to teach myself, step-by-step, how to produce both files. In fact, I found that the one led on to the other.
The first step in creating my first eBook was to convert the original microsoft word file “An Introduction to Writing Craft” into a PDF file. I had had experience of doing this before, at least with simpler files. So that was quite straightforward.
The next step was more challenging for me as a novice publisher: Transferring the Pdf file into an ePub file.
I was ultimately able to do this, only after several failed attempts.
The cover turned out to be a default template, which I decided to go along with at this stage.
I now declare that I am the author and publisher of an eBook entitled An Introduction to Writing Craft, that I have stored on my laptop computer in my Apple Books application. My next step is learning how to share it with subscribers to my blog. Or shall I share the PDF file instead?