I am so excited I'm "Squee-ing" all over... I'm talking the whole nine yards, goose bumps, tummy tickles (the good kind lol) and drunken giggles! Sure it wasn't anything to write home about yet (though I did immediately text my mother hehe).
My process has been really simple, but I've gotten lots of questions about it. So here it is in simple steps:
HOW TO SELF-PUB:
1) Write a banging story.
2) Personally edit for clarity, smoothness, and readability. Make it perfect in your eyes.
3) Hire someone to read and edit it. (For me I use my lover, who is amazing with continuity and clarity, he also is perfect at finding the exact right word. And Ember Rose she is phenomenal with grammar and spelling, and is also good at telling me what works and what doesn't. She also is in charge of several "word-related projects." So I know she's got a good grasp of grammar.)
4) Format it. Amazon uses .html zip folders, and Barnes and Noble .doc, others use .epub. Make sure it looks amazing and things are done the way your distributor wants them. Opening an ebook and discovering its not formatted correctly will immediately turn off your reader.
5) Create an eye-popping cover. Use a professional photo, you can buy them at places like iStockPhoto, Dreamstime, and Shutterstock. Do not grab one from somewhere on the internet, its illegal unless you have permission. Put your title on it with your favorite editing program. The more professional supposedly the better you do - though I've seen some that are essentially just tits and ass slapped on the cover with a word pasted over it in paint and no thought about cropping, lighting, or how it looks as a thumbnail. Remember that your distributor has particular requirements too. If you don't feel up to creating one, buy it. I'll do one for you for $50 (with a by-line on the cover), but there are others out there who produce them for more or less.
6) Write out a blurb to hook your readers, include a rough (but accurate!) word count / page number so your readers know what to expect and a sneak peek.
7) Sign up with your distributor. (There are a lot out there, B&N and Amazon are only 2.)
8) Upload to your distributors following their formatting guides, previewing all material before you submit it, answer all questions and click upload.
9) Advertise. Some people will say to wait until its pubbed for this - but I start pretty much as soon as I have the book cover done, sometimes before. Some people say they've never advertised and are paid well, the truth is it is a personal choice. Do what you feel is good and necessary.
10) Receive your check and keep advertising.
I treat Lesa as a business, but a business I love and nurture, and she's paying off. I'll draw an analogy now if you will bear with me (I know sometimes my posts run long, hehe). But Writing is like Gardening. The word doc on your pc is only a tiny seed, it isn't the soil, it isn't the sunlight, it isn't the water, and left alone its not going to grow into the big money tree most writer's dream about. But if you put that tiny seed in the soil (with a publisher or on Amazon or B&N) and water it with a good cover, shine the sun of advertising on it, then it will start to flourish. But no matter what it has to be drug through the dirt.