How to publish illustrated ebooks

Ace InspireWhy the next few months will make a big difference if you want to publish an illustrated book

The rise and rise of the eBook has made it much easier for most people who want to be authors to get their book out there for people to buy. Kindle Direct Publishing allows you to upload your own eBook to Amazon, or use a site like to get your eBook into online stores like Barnes and Noble, Sony, or the iBooks store.

Up until now, though, this has really only worked well for text based books. I ran a session at Britmums about publishing eBooks, and many of the questions at the end were from people who want to publish children’s illustrated books or recipe books. I saw beautiful mock ups and heard inspiring descriptions from people with some great ideas for books who just wanted to know the best way to get their book into the hands of buyers.

Kindle Fire

The ‘best’ way to publish depends on many factors, but if you have an illustrated book, it is about to get a little easier.  The Kindle Fire is the first colour eBook reader. It is out already in the US, and I predict that it will be on sale in the UK in time for Christmas 2012 – there are rumours of a number of improved versions coming out soon. A colour eBook reader will make it much easier to replicate illustrations to inspire and interest children. If you have a children’s book ready to publish, start looking into how to get it published via Kindle Direct Publishing and you’ll have it all ready for when the Kindle Fire hits the UK. Uploading your eBook to KDP is relatively simple: there is a step by step guide at

Beyond waiting for Kindle, there are other things you can do now to start selling. I recently interviewed author and illustrator Allan Plenderleith. His children’s book, The Smelly Sprout, came out a couple of years ago and has been a regular best seller at Christmas. Allan teamed up with a friend to create an app from the book. He has also created a couple of stories specifically as apps – maximising the interactivity with Tickle Finger in the Jungle, where the child’s finger interacts with the story. Around 3 million copies of Allan’s book apps have been downloaded and his new book, The Silly Satsuma, will be out as a book and an app later this year. If you have a book where interactivity could be a key feature think about turning it into an app.

These are just two ways to get your illustrated book available to buy. If you want to find out more about online publishing visit for free training videos all about how to publish your own book.

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  1. 30 July 2012 / 20:23

    I published a full-colour designed PDF version of my recipe book via Gumroad ( (you can buy it there for $1 – It’s a fairly straightforward process, though I am a typesetter and designer (and coder and editor!) by profession, so much easier for me than (Wini)Fred Bloggs. There’s also the iBook route, which I have not gone down (my book is available on iBooks in its text format, via Smashwords) as it’s an expensive business. I imagine companies like Smashwords will be bringing out services for fixed-layout eBooks in the early part of next year.

  2. 31 July 2012 / 03:12

    Thanks for this post Antonia.