7 Steps To Get Your Ebook On The Amazon Kindle Store

This is a guest post by Dave Ursillo from DaveUrsillo.com

I recently published my first manifesto as a downloadable e-book for the Amazon Kindle.

How to get your Ebook on the Kindle Store

I had some reservations about how and when to publish my first e-book — and if you have ever published something for your blog, I’m sure you’ve dealt with the same.

Some of my hang-ups included whether I should self-publish my manifesto on Amazon, release it for free as a PDF download on my blog, or simply post it on my blog for all to enjoy.

I ultimately decided to personally explore Amazon’s service — one that I have heard many good things about over the last couple of years — and use my freshly-written, 3,000-word manifesto called Power from Within as a test-run.

What I discovered is that the process is surprisingly simple, and, outside of taking some time to understand the proper HTML formatting for the Amazon Kindle reader, you too can self-publish your own e-book on Amazon in as little as 7 easy steps.

Here’s a step-by-step guide for you to follow.

Why Kindle?

In spite of having known about Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) for many months, it still took me over year to finally commit to publishing my manifesto Power from Within to the Kindle.

Here are some of the best advantages to publishing on Amazon that should help motivate you to finish your book and decide on publishing to this popular platform:

  1. Automatically publish to Kindle stores on Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.de, simultaneously
  2. Choose from several languages including English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, or Italian
  3. Set pricing for US Dollars, Pounds Sterling, or Euros and choose between 35% or 70% commissions
  4. Kindle apps expand your reach beyond the Kindle and onto iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, PC, Mac, Blackberry, Android-based devices and Windows Phone 7
  5. Submit your e-book to the Amazon Kindle Singles storefront

With all these advantages, Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is best described as simple, flexible and far-reaching.

Step 1 – Write (and Format) the Book!

This one should be pretty obvious, right?

I wrote my Power from Within manifesto in Microsoft Word. You can choose any word processor, but your best bet will be to choose one that allows you to save the document into a Web Page, Filtered (*HTM & *HTML) format.

Amazon provides you will a whole page full of helpful tips on formatting.

You can find that page here, or see it listed just below the option to upload your book.

Step 2 – Sign Into Amazon KDP With Your Amazon.com Account

Whether your book is completely finished or a work-in-progress, head over to http://kdp.amazon.com and sign in with ease through your pre-existing Amazon.com account information.

Otherwise, you will have to sign up for a free Amazon account to access Amazon KDP.

Step 3 – “Add a New Title” to your Amazon KDP Bookshelf

To create a new publication, click the “Add a new title” button. This will create your new project.

Above, highlighted in yellow, you can see my Power from Within manifesto approved by Amazon for publication and awaiting the 24-hour period before it officially appears on the Amazon Kindle Store (but more on this later).

Step 4 – Edit Book Details in the “Your Book” Tab

Now, it’s time to add all the necessary information about your book.

First, you’ll start by adding the book’s name, and optionally include a Series Title, Volume number and Edition number.

Most important will be investing some time into writing a strong description of the book, which is actually what will be displayed below your book’s basic information on Amazon Kindle Store (and ultimately help sell the book). This is how it will display:

Next, you’ll continue by adding your book’s language, date details and include information about a publisher or ISBN if you’ve gone the extra lengths to acquire them.

Most importantly, you will need to specify if you have the rights to the work you intend to publish. If you own the copyright to the original work that you created, select the “not a public domain work” option, which will legally entitle you to sell the book on Amazon.

Amazon makes understanding the necessary options very simple and easy with their in depth descriptions and lots of links (the right-hand column pictured below) to explore other pages in greater depth, just in case you have questions or are unsure about anything!

Moving on to the next step of your book’s details, you’ve given the option to upload a book cover, which I highly recommend.

Amazon recommends either a JPEG (.jpeg) or TIFF (.tif or .tiff) image with dimensions of 1280 pixels wide by 550 pixels tall, and a standard resolution of 72 dpi.

After you upload your cover image, you can choose whether or not you want to enable digital rights management (DRM) which intends to (keyword intends, but does not guarantee) the unauthorized distribution of the Kindle file of your book.

This prevents your customer from being able to share or “lend” your book to a friend for any period of time, and is irreversible once your book is uploaded.

I chose not to enable this service because I wanted my readers to be able to lend the Power from Within manifesto with others. The safe option is to leave the DRM option disabled for now — you can change it later, but not change it once it’s been enabled and the book has been uploaded.

Step 5 – Properly Format Your Book for Upload

Next, we will be uploading your formatted e-book to the Amazon KDP Bookshelf. Locate and upload your e-book (in Web Page, Filtered (*HTM & *HTML) format). If you uploaded the book successfully, you’re given the option to view a preview of the e-book to see how it will appear in its formatted glory:

Finally, hit Save and Continue to carry onto the final page of your book’s upload.

Step 6 – Select Publishing Territories, Price and Royalty Rates

At last, you’ll be given a variety of options for publishing territories, and selecting the price of your new e-book, as well as royalty rates. However, this gets slightly tricky. As Amazon details:

You can choose between two royalty options: a 70% royalty option and a 35% royalty option. For example, for sales in the US, if your book’s list price is between $2.99 and $9.99, you can choose the 70% option. The 35% option is available in the US for books with list prices between $.99 and $200.00.

Essentially, your location and the royalty rate you desire will partly dictate the range of price for your e-book.

For my Power from Within manifesto, I first selected a 70% royalty rate at a $3.99, but ultimately decided that I wanted to offer the book for $.99, which I could only do with a 35% royalty rate.

Step 7 – Wait for Amazon’s Approval

When you are finished with providing all of the details and price specifications of your book, your submission will take usually 24 hours for Amazon to officially approve.

If you go back to make any changes, you will need to resubmit the book for approval, but depending upon the extent of your changes, it will usually take only a few hours for Amazon to approve and update your final product.

Here’s mine!

Is publishing to Amazon Kindle worth the investment?

The only cost that publishing on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing service requires is a bit of your time and a slight amount of patience, especially to get a hang of the learning curve with formatting for the Kindle.

Since the cost to you to self-publish on Amazon is essentially nonexistent, publishing is certainly worth exploring, and for a number of reasons.

  • Offering a product to your readers
  • Producing royalties for blog revenue
  • Expanding your reach and platform
  • Adding a credential to your resume
  • Familiarizing yourself with the publication process for future opportunities


With the incredibly low overheard to publish to Amazon Kindle, and the ability to produce some money for your blogging and writing ventures, there are many benefits to publishing on this easy-to-use, very functional and user-friendly platform.

I would highly recommend you give Amazon KDP a shot!

Photo Credit: Kodomut

Dave Ursillo This is a guest post by Dave Ursillo – Dave is a writer, thought-leader and life-explorer at DaveUrsillo.com, a Leadership speaker and founder of the Lead Without Followers alternative leadership movement. You can find him hanging out on Twitter or Facebook.

unauthorized distribution of the Kindle file of your book
  • Wow, that really is everything in a nutshell.  Thanks for describing the process – my husband and I are both looking into publishing some Kindle books this year, so this will be our guide!

  • Hi Dave!

    Amazon Kindle is a great place to start when you’re ready to publish your first eBook. From there, there’s Barnes and Nobles and plenty of independent directories which will happily sell and promote your eBook. 

    Great overview! Love that you provided pictures, too. 🙂 Good luck on your eBook sales! 

  • What great help. Thank you so much. Look for my eBook Who Killed Emmett Till? up on Kindle ASAP!!!

  • A big huge shout-out to my self-published awesome buddy, Dave, and for Francisco, my other awesome buddy, for hosting him here. As you guys may know, I am writing my Motivation guide for the Kindle and Andy – the hubby – is on task for the publishing side. It will probably be more like 15,000-18,000 words. I am wondering if you have any ideas on how much I should charge for it. Would the $2.99 to $4.99 be an expensive range? Also, should I offer it also as PDF on my blog? So much to think about.
    And most importantly, would you say the Kindle lends itself to Mind Maps and numbered lists etc? Or is it just plain text publish?
    THANK YOU guys! Congrats, Dave! As always, ever so proud of you.

  • This is a great review, where were you a couple of months ago when I published my first kindle book?? 🙂 I turned a small PDF book that I’ve been giving away on my blog as a test for my first kindle book. I wanted to set it at $0.99 but now I know why, I need the lower royalty. I wonder if I can change that after it’s already been published.

    I just submitted my second kindle book to amazon yesterday and I love the fact that it’s a no cost investment. It’s a great way to test out the waters with book publishing!

    Thank you! 🙂

  • Hey Farnoosh!

    First things first: Kindle lends itself to plain text, mostly. Bullet points and numbered lists should not be a problem. But complex formatting is mostly lost when saving as “Web Page, Filtered (*HTM & *HTML)” format.

    HOWEVER… there are a couple of other options that I myself did not explore. Amazon offers a couple of other options for building/previewing your Kindle ebook. There is one Kindle previewer, and another Kindle ebook file “builder” that might be better for more-complex formatting… I’m just not sure. Find them here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?ie=UTF8&docId=1000234621As for pricing, it may be best to experiment. My manifesto was short, 3,000 words, so a .99 price tag sounds right. I think a 2.99 price for your guide would be accurate. You can also check out a separate Amazon storefront called “Kindle Singles” that could give you a better idea on how other authors price their works!Dave

  • Thank you so much, darling Dave! I will keep you posted – and I’ll pass this on to my new “publisher”, Mr. Brock – He is working as a volunteer for now but hopes to get paid someday ;))!

  • Thanks for this article, it is very useful. One question. If I publish on amazon.co.uk (I am in the UK), can people buy the book on amazon.com?

  • Kristi, I was excited to have @90ed7cfb9a71c8d8591b435547bb1e8b:disqus write about this process because I also wanted to learn about it. I think he did a great job explaining the process.

    Thanks for your comment =)

  • Dan

    THanks for this article, I’ve never thought about putting my ebooks on the kindle store. Do you find you get new readers via there or is it more your efforts in promoting the book yourself that gets the purchases? My ebooks are free but I want more people to read them, thanks

  • Yes Rob! When you publish to Amazon Kindle Store it automatically and simultaneously publishes to all three Amazon sites (.com, .co.uk, and .de).

    There are some specific caveats with pricing and payout depending on where you sell it. I think either the 35% is the threshold for the Europe pay-outs, or some other complication that comes from VAT tax in Europe. Amazon has more info on their site. But still relatively straight forward 🙂

  • Hey Stacy! You can indeed alter the price / royalty rate after the book is published. It just takes Amazon another 24 hour cycle for approval. But once you have already been approved, the 24 hours becomes more like 6-12. 🙂

  • I think it depends, Dan, because you might publish a book that only your own readers find (depending on the title, the description, the cover, who knows!) or you might write a broad-appeal work that gets buzz and ends up on the front page of the Amazon Kindle Singles book store which would drive in tons of new readers.

    Probably depends on genre and the like, but I think an expansion on different publishing platforms is always a good recipe for attracting positive attention and new readers, especially when your current readers know where to find your works!


  • Thanks Dave, much appreciated.

  • Great post, Dave. I have been considering what to do with my (not yet finished) manifesto – just like you, I’ve been torn between self-publishing, releasing it as a PDF, or posting it on my blog.  I’m glad to hear it’s so easy to self-publish in case I choose to go that route.

  • Great post, Dave. I have been considering what to do with my (not yet finished) manifesto – just like you, I’ve been torn between self-publishing, releasing it as a PDF, or posting it on my blog.  I’m glad to hear it’s so easy to self-publish in case I choose to go that route.

  • Hey Krista, I’d say to you, why not all of the above? If it doesnt require too much, it’s always nice to expand your platform in this simple way. Go for it, give a few options a try and see what seems to resonate with you personally and your readers!

  • Thank you. I intend to do this tomorrow.

  • I think something like this is excellent social proof – to say that you’re published on the Kindle! Not only that, but you have easy access to the Kindle Marketplace. Anyway, I love it, well done!

  • Great overview! Love that you provided pictures, too. 🙂 Good luck on your eBook sales!! Amazon Kindle is a great place to start when you’re ready to publish your first eBook.

  • Dave: All so well organized and explained.  Thank you.  And thanks to Francisco for posting it here.  Great work, both of you!  Susan

  • Thanks for the guide, Big problem is who will write the book? I Know lot about photography but I have so many websites that I have no time to write a extra article at the end of the day…

  • McMillian
  • Lindsay

    Thanks for your help. I am in the process of publishing my ebook to the Kindle. I have a question for you. If I decide to edit my book down the road, is it easy to re-publish it?

  • This 7 steps are very easy to work upon…Thanks for providing it in your blog..

  • Jandie

    I have put my script on HTML format but when I upload it, it’s laid out incorrectly. What am I doing wrong?

  • Dupontcares

    Thanks you for the information.

  • Great eBook sales!!Its nice seven step  it is very useful. Thnaks

  • Melanieloveridge

    Nell Rose
    Thanks for the easy steps to write my book. This is the best explanation I have read.

  • Sellers in the UK might like to know that currently, for worldwide sales, unless you have  a bank account in USD, one has to wait for the sales to reach at least $100 dollars at which time a cheque, in USD, can be sent. To cash this would obviously incur bank charges in the UK.
    Sales in some European countries can be received in £Sterling.
    Effectively, Amazon are holding on to a lot of cash from small sellers.

  • Elaine

    If the book I wrote is already in Amazon.com from the self-publishing company (iUniverse), can I still put it up again directly?

  • Becky096

    This is probably a silly question from a novice, but I sell the PDF version of my ebooks from my blog. If I publish with KDP, can I still sell my PDF on my blog, or does Amazon now have the rights?

  • I should say that I’m really impressed by
    your way of thinking and the ideas you’re sharing with each of your
    readers.Really original way of thinking! Go on the same, way!

  • Tikila

    Thank you for sharing.  I just uploaded mine today but I saw your post afterwards.  Now, I have to find out how to upload my bookcover.

  • I recently published my first manifesto as a downloadable e-book for the Amazon Kindle.

  • Georgene Holland

    I am 86 years young and hope to follow your instructions and get my ‘travel stories published. You are so wonderful to offer these steps. Thank you both a million!

  • I recently published my first manifesto as a downloadable e-book for the Amazon Kindle.

  • Your own e-book on Amazon in as little as 7 easy steps.

  • Some of my hang-ups included whether I should self-publish my
    manifesto on Amazon, release it for free as a PDF download on my blog,
    or simply post it on my blog for all to enjoy.

  • You too can self-publish your own e-book on Amazon in as little as 7 easy steps.

  • Guest

    If the

  • Technology123

    If I write a book of my own then how to get necessary copyright before publishing it to kindle.

  • brian

    can I post a book for free ?

  • Hassaan Khan

    Dave, Nice post. I just need little bit more description on royalty option on amazon ebook publishing. Please explain..

  • disappointed

    useless if you are from Australia, but they don’t really mention that anywhere…

  • Kohila Ganesan

    Thank you so much. Is it possible to publish kindle book if you are under 18. I am 13 and i want my paranormal fantasy story to be published.
    Help me out!!

  • Kohila Ganesan

    It is better to go to Amazon kindle publishing FAQs.

  • Greg

    I have written a book for Aphasia, it contains a lot of images which are required to show mouth and lip positions etc does kindle accept images, these images are either my own, or have been purchased. and as such I own the copyright.

  • Dave

    Great tutorial and anyone needing to correctly format their eBook for Amazon (@Jandie) could always use Kindle eBook software, which you can get on Fiverr at:

  • Aussie

    I am an Australian. Can I publish with Amazons? Do I publish with Australian spelling? Do I have to pay US tax if there are royalties?

  • This is excellent and super helpful information—thanks!

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  • Veito Moretti

    The pictures I loaded for my ebook were all JPEGs. The book was published and available on Amazon-now the pictures not show up in the ebook (it’s a stock photo of a camera)….do I need to download the pics as a bitmap image instead? Thanks

  • James

    Helpful post, thks : )

    Quick related Q if I may…
    … what are the issues surrounding Intellectual Property Rights and book titles?
    For example… what if Baskin Robbins published a book called Unleash the Giant Within…
    … wouldn’t Tony Robbin’s folks be less than pleased?
    So what constitutes appropriate due diligence on the one hand and to what extent might one protect one’s own book title on the other?

    Thanks in advance for your insights!

    ~ James