I’ve recently published and (republished one from CreateSpace) both of my paperback books using Amazon’s 6 X 9 Template for a MAC.
After practically pulling my hair out by the roots, here’s what I learned.
- If you are starting with a Word document with the intention of copying and pasting into the Amazon template, leave it at the 8.5″ X 11″ size. I used 1.5 line spacing on one book, and 1.15 line spacing on the one I brought over from CreateSpace. I justified the text and added page numbers. On the CreateSpace book, I left it at the 1.15 line spacing with first-line paragraph indents because the size increased.
Selfpublishingschool.com shares some great tips on formatting your novel. There is a debate right now as to whether or not you need to do a first line indent on paragraphs in fiction books. I did do it for my fantasy book, The Heart Stone Chronicles, The Swamp Fairy.
However, for my short story/poetry book, Fairies, Myths, and Magic ~ A Summer Celebration, I did not. I used block paragraphs. This is acceptable for non-fiction like memoirs, according to what I read at the above site.
Personally, if I’m reading a paperback, I would prefer block paragraphs, but that’s just me.
EDITORS: If you know the answer to the first line indent question in fiction novels, please let me know in the comments. <3 Thanks.
ALSO: Amazon calculates how much it will cost to print your book. The bigger the book, the more it costs. You will have to raise the price of your book if you want to make any royalties from the sale.
I’m keeping my paperbacks smaller so I can ask less for them. I cringe at paying $15 or more for a paperback book and don’t want my readers to pay that price either. Add the shipping costs to it and buying a paperback from Amazon becomes a costly proposition. My preference may not be yours.
Okay, so back to inserting your Word manuscript into the Amazon 6 X 9 print book template:
- Download the 6 X 9 template from Amazon. There are different sizes so don’t think you have to use the one I did. Make a copy of the template and rename it. Make sure you enable editing.
- Go to your Word document and do a Command (Control on Windows) A to select your entire manuscript.
- Then, do a Command C to copy the manuscript.
- Do a Command V to paste your manuscript into the 6 X 9 Amazon (MAC) or Windows Template.
Everything should have come over correctly except your Table of Contents (TOC). Here’s how to fix that:
- With your mouse, highlight your TOC.
- Go to the References TAB on your Word Menu, then select Table of Contents.
- Select the first TOC version, called “Classic.” This will correct your TOC. Double check that the pages match with the TOC.
DON’T waste your time trying to create a Word document that is 6 X 9. It doesn’t exist as a page size selection anymore. The statement size doesn’t work either. I tried everything, but couldn’t get the TOC to come out right. Trust me on this. It will save you the five days I lost in my life to learn how to use the book templates from Amazon. 😀
Once I figured out how to get my manuscript into the Amazon print template, it was a breeze to upload and check. It does take some time to upload on the Amazon site, but once it loads you can preview your book from start to finish.
Amazon will email you when your book goes live. I’ve had a hard time with the PDF cover, but lucky me, I turned to my Sister of the Fey, Wendy Anne Darling from Bookxeedo Book Covers to help me resize the cover. She created all the covers for my books.
I cannot guarantee that you will have the same results working with your paperback as I did. However, I think I’ve been able to give you some helpful tips to make your paperback publishing journey easier. <3
Happy writing and publishing!