Monday, December 3, 2007

Self-Publishing: How Important Is An ISBN Number?

You've weighed all your options and have determined that self-publishing makes the most sense for your foray into publishing. You understand that there is an increase in the need to self-market your title, but there is also a correlating increase in profit margin. Other risks have been assessed and youre comfortable moving forward in the direction you've chosen.

Have you applied for an ISBN number?

"What's that?" You might be asking yourself. Well, an ISBN (International Standard BookNumber) is a specific number that helps identify your book and has provided the standard of book identification since 1970.

Some brick and mortar stores as well as online retailers have policies that disqualify the sale of a book that does not contain an ISBN.

The cost to purchase an ISBN may seem prohibitive for many. Heres the basic cost structure...

Registration Fee: $24.95

Service Fee for 10 ISBN's: $225.00

Annual Fee: $25

Manual Processing Fee (if you file a print application): $50

Express Service (if required): $125

If you needed an ISBN number quickly you would spend close to $450 to get one. The truth is, you receive up to ten ISBNs for the price listed above, but the acquisition of an ISBN doe note provide a distinction between the need for one or ten separate numbers, ultimately you pay the same price. This can be a benefit I you have additional titles planned, but can be a hefty expense for a single book

The online web address for ISBN acquisition is

You should know that there are resellers of International Standard BookNumbers and you can purchase a single ISBN for around $50 through these services. Another alternate avenue for the purchase of an ISBN is through your book printer. These printing firms often provide this as a service to their printing customers simply because they realize that you may not need 10 ISBN numbers and you may not wish to pay $300-400 for the use of a single ISBN.

The task of self-publishing may seem daunting, but it can be successfully done. Just as you spent time researching the subject matter for your book, so too is the process for the publication process. Beyond the need for an ISBN you will also need to manage copyright issues as well as filing your work with the Library of Congress. Again in many cases a qualified book printer can address these issues although you may find a less expensive alternative with a little online comparison-shopping.

Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. He is the founder of FaithWriters ( and many other web projects. FaithWriters has grown to become one of the largest online destinations for Christian writers.

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Self Publish Serenade

A New Way To Self Publish

More and more good authors are turning to the Internet to self publish. There are several reasons for that. All of them are probably well known to every writer by now, so we'll not go into them here. What we'll talk about here is a new way to self publish.

Everyone has, by now, heard of ebooks. This is a wonderful way to publish on the net, but it requires special programs to empliment it. And there are web sites that will do all that for you for a fee. But what if you simply can't afford it or you don't want to pay anyone?

This idea I've come up with may be out there in left field, but out in left field is where you usually find some great ideas. Here is what I found.

Create a credit card account somewhere first. Pick any company you are comfortable with and doesn't cost a great deal. After that is all set, put your novel on your web site, create its own page, and use the ariel font. Use size 10 for the main text. Your title and chapter headings can be larger.

Write an intro page for your novel and create a separate page for it. Here is where you'll put any illustrations you may have. So people will have an example of your writing, copy and paste the first chapter of your novel and put it here, too. Also on this page will be the link to your credit card payment company.

The next step is to set up your credit card account to connect with the novel page after your customers have paid for it and then they can simply print out the novel or copy and paste it to their Word or Works program that is already on their computers.

This is a simple and yet effective way to self publish and it does not cost you anything, either. Out in left field, I know, but hey. Anything to survive, huh?

Anna Kathryn Bir is a published author of many sci fi short stories. One of them was a Star Trek story. You can find her sci fi novels on her web site