By now you’re ready to upload your eBook, and you know where you’re going to sell it. Generally they can be fairly easy to figure out, but each and every one is so bloody different it gets confusing. Let’s make it as easy as possible. As a note, the next lesson will cover manuscript format issues that result in needing to revise & resubmit (which if you followed the previous steps you should not have) and pricing, so please review that lesson before beginning.

Always start with Smashwords. You’ll see why shortly. To upload to Smashwords:

1. Make sure you have a HTML or PDF version of your manuscript saved (in Word, just choose SAVE AS and pick either format)
2. Go to http://smashwords.com and log in to your account
3. Click on MENU and select PUBLISH AN EBOOK
4. Fill in all the information it asks for (we will cover pricing in the next lesson). Sometimes it is best to write these things in MS Word for spell check, then copy & paste it in. Take your time. Triple check. Do not misspell, make grammar errors, make it perfect. 
5. Choose to create every kind of file possible (it asks what types you wish it to convert to and automatically all are selected, LEAVE IT alone!). Agree to terms. Submit your PDF or HTML. Hit PUBLISH IMMEDIATELY
6. Note: You want to publish on every platform but NOT Amazon. Currently (2015) you have to sell thousands of copies on Smashwords and other platforms before they will send it to Amazon. Amazon you must do on your own if you want to start selling your book now. However, Barnes & Noble is doable, and publish to it through Smashwords to save yourself a step.
7. Wait (it can take minutes or hours depending on traffic). You can leave the page and it will email you when your conversions are finished.
8. Once your conversions are done, be sure to log in to your dashboard. Under METADATA MANAGER click ISBN MANAGER. Follow the instructions, and make sure you get an ISBN.
9. Now, you must wait. It will automatically check for issues, which the next lesson will address. DO NOT GO ON TO OTHER PLATFORMS UNTIL YOU ARE DONE WITH THIS  AND YOUR EB OOK IS LIVE, ERROR FREE.

Making sure your distribution is across all platforms (except Amazon) and you have an ISBN is very important. Make sure everything is triple checked and then wait for any errors. You’ll be solid! This is why you do this first: Smashwords has the BEST automatic error check, and they also give you an ISBN which is very handy you have.

Now, if you prefer to publish to Barnes & Noble separate from Smashwords, it will be fairly easy, probably the easiest publishing you’ll do.

1. Go to http://nookpress.com and log in
2. Click CREATE NEW PROJECT at the top of the page
3. Name it
4. Simply fill in every step with the information you have, it goes faster if you created the title, blurb, and other info in MS Word already and copy & paste it in
5. Select worldwide rights (we’ll talk DRM next lesson) and enter your desired price
6. Upload your *doc, *docx, *html, or *pdf
7. Review it carefully. When you are happy, click PUBLISH and you are set

Generally you want to wait for Smashwords to approve your manuscript with no errors. That is the version to upload to these other platforms. Simply wait for Smashwords to approvae, and if you’ve made any changes because of errors, do it in your *doc or *docx always, and then SAVE AS in the different formats. Don’t forget on the copyright pages of each version to note what platform it is (i.e. Smashwords Edition, Kindle Edition, etc).

Next, for Amazon’s Kindle, you have the option of using the ePub version you made, or downloading the converted ePub from Smashwords, or…diciest of all, trying to upload a *doc or *docx. Amazon claims it takes these (check their FAQ) but in truth I have never once gotten it to work. Only *mobi, *epub or *opf. Let’s just stick with the *opf or *mobi you converted yourself, or the *epub you downloaded from Smashwords. Just remember for each version your copyright page must say “Smashwords Version” for Smashwords, “Nook Version” for Barnes & Nobles’ Nook, and so on.

Now, for selling on Amazon, you’ll have to:

1. Go to http://kdp.amazon.com and log in
2. (for the “new” bookshelf as of 2015) Click CREATE NEW TITLE near the top of the page on the left side
3. Click “Enroll in KDP Select” They will remove it eventually, but for now it is good exposure
4. Fill in all the info, again copy & paste descriptions
5. Make sure you click ADD CONTRIBUTORS and add only your name as author. DO NOT ADD ANYONE ELSE UNLESS YOU HAVE A CO-AUTHOR as this info appears on Amazon.com (legally credit the photographer/editor/graphic artist on your copyright page and you’re fine, just do NOT do it on the website!)
6. Upload the files asked for, and click next
7. When you get to price, for now, you want the HIGHEST royalty rate. Remember, we will cover pricing issues next lesson (calculate your own international/auto, what the fuck is VAT, etc)
8. When you’re ready, submit, pray, and if all is well you’re set

The new bookshelf is MUCH easier than the old, but this is still a good handy quick guide. So far you have noticed a few differences: with Smashwords you need to use the ISBN Manager, with Amazon you need to add contributors. Start with Smashwords since they distribute to the most sellers, and have the strictest standards. If your manuscript passes the Smashwords litmus test, it will work anywhere.

Now, for the brave, we come to Google Play Books. First, go get a drink, I suggest whiskey. Drink it until you feel mellow. If you’re an angry drunk, smoke a bowl, eat some ice cream, just do whatever you can to feel calm. You’ll need it. It can be very frustrating, particularly once you get to setting up the automatic royalty payments.

2. Log into your account
3. Click on BOOK CATALOG on the left
4. Click ADD BOOK now in the upper center of the screen
5. Get that ISBN you got from Smashwords, paste it in, and hit CREATE
6. Fill in details (copy and paste the descriptions) carefully, be sure to scroll down so you miss nothing
7. Once you fill out the first questions, at the top center click CONTENT and upload your *pdf file and cover image. Once again, fill in EVERYTHING and scroll down before going to the next step to make sure you enter in everything they need
8. Complete all the steps, click the sections at the top to advance
9. Once done, at the top select PUBLISH
10. Click READY TO PUBLISH
11. Pray you have made no mistakes, they are a pain to fix (we will cover that next lesson) and once it appears under your book catalog as LIVE it’s live.
12. Before it can go live, you need to set up your payment method, just as Amazon walked you through.
13. On the left select PAYMENT CENTER
14. Select ADD A PAYMENT PROFILE
15. Fill in your bank name, routing number, account number, and your legal name, follow any prompts it issues
16. Repeat this as many times as you need to, it never goes smoothly. Just make sure you can see an established payment profile before you go on to marketing the book with any link to Google Play.

You have now uploaded your manuscript everywhere that truly matters (but feel free to Google other places such as http://LuLu.com, once you’ve mastered these retailers any others are easy as pie). Smashwords has you on Kobo, Oyster, iTunes, and so much more. You got yourself on Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Google Play. You have your bases covered.

Now, take a break and relax. It should go smoothly if you followed all my steps. Even so, you may have errors. Please, wait on uploading anywhere else until after Smashwords says you’re good. In the next lesson, we’ll explain why, but for now just upload to Smashwords, go on to the next lesson, and prepare for some hard work. Good Luck!