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This is the third message in the WVLS series called “Boost: Tips and Resources to Enhance Service at Your Library.” You will find these messages in your email and as a digital lite on the WVLS website. You can find all related posts by selecting “Boost” in the “Categories” control on the right side of the Digital Lites page.

“How can I format my book into an ebook? I need more exposure for my work, can you help me find a place online to promote my work? I’m ready to print, can you help me find a publisher?”

WVLS member libraries can help with that! The resources below outline how to format books, enter state and national competitions, explore promotional spaces, self-publish, or find a publisher.

Format original works into a print or digital book
Pressbooks http://widigitallibrary.org/

  • Pressbooks is an easy-to-use online software coordinated by the Wisconsin Public Library Consortium (WPLC) that allows authors to create professional-quality print-ready and eBook files. Authors can use this software outside of the Wisconsin Author Project competition.
  • Design books, newsletters, poetry, novels, and any other written content in digital and print ready formats using Pressbooks.

State and National Competitions
Wisconsin Author Project http://widigitallibrary.org/ : Submit your work to a state author contest

  • Submit your finished work through Self-E to be considered for the WI Author’s Project.
  • Through the Wisconsin Author Project, libraries are helping local authors get the recognition they deserve for writing great books. Submissions for the next contest will begin in Spring 2019.
  • Authors can opt in to be included in the Indie Wisconsin collection on BiblioBoard featuring only Wisconsin submissions. Authors must opt-in when they submit their work in Self-E to be featured in the collection.
  • Note, submitting authors are not paid for their submissions but are welcome to publish the same work on other platforms.
  • Winners receive
    • $1,000 cash, write-up in December issue of Library Journal, honors at the ALA Midwinter 2019 Thrive Reception in Seattle
    • A Library Journal Digital Review (Winner + Runner Up)
    • To speak at a session during the Wisconsin Library Association Annual Conference in October (Winner + Runner Up)


  • Authors can submit their work during the month of November to the National Novel Writing Month competition.
  • Hundreds of NaNoWriMo novels have been traditionally published. They include Sara Gruen’s Water for Elephants, Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus, Hugh Howey’s Wool, Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl, Jason Hough’s The Darwin Elevator, and Marissa Meyer’s CinderSee a full list of NaNoWriMo published authors.


Self-publishing and Promoting Your Work
Biblioboard-Indie Wisconsin Collection http://widigitallibrary.org/ : Publish your work in a Wisconsin Author Collection

  • Once an author’s work is created and saved in ePub or PDF format (Pressbooks), the work can be submitted through Library Journal’s SELF-e program to be showcased in the Indie Wisconsin Statewide Collection on Biblioboard, and to also be considered for national exposure.
  • The Indie Wisconsin Statewide Collection can be accessed instantly with no waiting and no library card necessary.
  • The 2018 Wisconsin Author Project included the acquisition of Biblioboard coordinated by the Wisconsin Public Library Consortium (WPLC). Users can submit their work outside of the author event.

Facebook/Social media

  • Authors can publish excerpts of their writing from personal websites or via pdfs on social media for exposure.
  • Authors should friend and/or follow publishers, editors, newspapers, magazines focused on writing.

Personal Websites

  • Authors can create a personal website with their information and biography.
  • Authors can publish excerpts of their work on their website which can be shared via social media etc.

Finding a Publisher
Contact Publishers Directly

  • Authors can contact major publishers directly via the publisher’s website, phone, or mail for directions on how the publisher would prefer to receive submissions.
  • Publishers and imprints may only publish specific genres or for specific audiences. Authors should keep this in mind when they are contacting publishers.
  • Authors can publish excerpts of their work via personal websites, competitions, social media, etc. while waiting to hear back after submitting their work directly to publishers.

No luck in directly contacting publishers?
Authors can choose to self-publish or submit their work to companies who reach out to publishers. These options regularly require that a percentage of any profit go to the company for promoting your work via internet platforms or to publishers.

Amazon Create Space is combining with Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP)

  • Authors can publish a trade paperback or publish on Amazon Kindle
  • Authors earn up to 70% royalty on Kindle eBook and 60% on paperback sales.
  • KDP supports popular file formats like Word, html, txt, pdf and offers free formatting tools like Kindle Create and a free cover creator.
  • Authors can publish and eBook and paperback with one file, and the book will be available on Amazon within two days.
  • KDP offers a free ISBN for print books.
  • Kindle Direct Publishing: KDP’s print on demand service allows authors to self-publish books in paperback and sell it on Amazon websites in the US, Europe, and Japan, as well as other retail book sellers through KDP’s Expanded Distribution channels. Authors don’t have to pay any costs upfront or carry any inventory. The book is printed on demand when customers purchase it.
  • Great information in: Why should I self-publish my print book with KDP?


  • Formatting: Authors can provide a style guide or the Draft2Digital staff will create a style guide using the author’s manuscript.
  • Publish: A Word document will be converted into an ebook with clean chapter breaks, a functioning table of contents, and optional end matter to generate more sales. Authors can also print physical books.
  • Distribute: The author chooses the list price and the digital stores and can track sales daily with detailed reporting and make unlimited changes to content for free.
  • How much does it cost? There are no fees for formatting or distributing. Draft2Digital will keep about 10% of the retail price.


  • FREE ISBNs, author profile page, ebook conversion to multiple formats from a Word doc.
  • Earn 60% of list price from major ebook retailers and up to 80% list at the Smashwords Store.
  • Authors upload their book once and reach multiple retailers and libraries.
  • Global retail distribution to Apple Books (51 countries), Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Walmart (via Kobo!), OverDrive (reach 20,000+ public libraries!), Gardners (reach hundreds of small ebook stores and 2,000+ public and academic libraries), Scribd, Tolino (powers Germany’s largest ebook stores), Baker & Taylor, Inktera and more on the way
  • Global library distribution to OverDrive (20,000+ public libraries), Gardners (2,000+ libraries), Odilo (2,100+ libraries in North America, South America and Europe), Bibliotheca CloudLibrary (3,000+ public libraries in the US, Canada, U.K. and Australia), Baker & Taylor Axis 360
  • Audiobook production and distribution in partnership via our partnership with Findaway Voices.


  • Authors can print in hardback, paperback, or ebook.
  • Print on demand
  • Color or black and white
  • Send your ebook to all major online retailers
  • Free and for purchasing publishing tools. Authors can pay to have their work included in advance catalogs published monthly and bi-monthly.
  • Submissions are available to retailers and libraries (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Indie Bookstores)

Scribblitt: Specifically for Young Writers

  • Scribblitt™ is a launch pad for creativity where kids grab an idea, and using tools provided and collaboration with other kids, teachers, writers and publishers, take it where they want to go, making their own characters, story and illustrations come to life in a professional product.
  • Young authors can publish a hardcover book from $24.99
  • Authors can type directly into the write itt template, upload scanned artwork, photos or use illustrate itt to create images
  • Make an about the author section on the back
  • Educator discounts available


Submitted by: Anne Hamland