From what I've read and watched on the internet, I have to agree with people stating how complex the book set up is, if you do your POD through Ingram Spark. It took me several days to get the formats right. I thought I could use Amazon's KDP template and simply copy&paste, or use the same PDF files. However, IS couldn't work with my book file, because the pages were placed side-to-side (OK, I missed that in the guidelines.). More of a headache was my book cover design, because IS required a ready-to-go image (in PDF with evident CMYK, etc.), which is the front cover, spine and back cover as one. My designer merely did the front cover for me. Unfortunately his computer was down, so he couldn't help me edit the cover. I changed the title of my book, too, which didn't make anything easier. And since I'm poor I had to teach myself more Photoshop. Somehow I managed to make the edits, but you can tell that it was me. There is no particular sense of proportion, but it's the best that I could do. The previous title of the novel is, in fact, still evident in the book cover. The written words inside the heart, "Somewhat Damaged", depicts one of my favourite and most meaningful Nine Inch Nails songs. But it doesn't mean that all my readers will be Nine Inch Nails fans, and I took my editor's word for it (Thanks, Elizabeth). "Somewhat Damaged" itself as a title doesn't say anything about the book or the story. Why not call the book "Mildy Concussed", because it would have the same kind of effect? Namely, obscurity. If you love Nine Inch Nails you will notice that the new title still has a little bit of relevance to the band (I couldn't help it!). Deciding on the book title was hard. I could've chosen "Open Heart", however, there is a Canadian series going by that name already, which is why I decided against it. The title would be too broad-sounding, too. For a while I thought deciding on a book title was the hardest thing until I got into the whole self--publishing business. If you've read my previous blog you will remember me saying how terrified I was of self-publishing my novel. In the end I'm glad I did it, despite all the bumps in the road that slowed me down big time. But on a positive note, I learnt a lot. What matters is to have the book out. After ten years of work I realised that I needed to move on to the next project.
Anyhow, when I was setting up my KDP paperback, I used their user-friendly cover design tool in order to create a spine and a back cover. Somehow I managed to download a PNG of the finished version, so I could use it for IS too. It took me a whole day (a whole day!) to understand why IS wouldn't accept my converted PDF version. But I got there eventually. If you're about to self-publish your book through IS, there is a free setup offer going on until JUNE 30 (2018). Use the promo code: SELFPUB and save US$49. It's still costing me around US$19 to get a copy for myself (for proofing,). The proof copy from KDP costs me around US$13.95. I'm still waiting for both proof copies, so I can finally confirm the whole POD business. I'm sorry to keep you guys waiting. I will make it up to you.
I also paid US$85 for IS to advertise the book for me. I even paid Facebook CAD$35 to advertise my website, not to mention hundreds of dollars for the website and the domain. I understand that that's how it works. Your book should be worth it. My eBook hasn't even earned me $20, yet. Right now I just care that my book is out. I know that all my efforts will eventually pay off. If not, then whatever. I've tried.