How to Be on iBooks Digital Shelf

Apple_productsApple’s iBooks platform is one of the three largest online bookstores. Publishing to the iBookstore will make your digital book available to anyone who has either an iPhone or an iPad. To date, over 500 million iOS devices have been sold – Putting the number of iOS users at higher than the United States population.

If you’re serious about publishing a digital book, the iBookstore is simply a platform that you can’t afford to ignore.

Unfortunately, publishing to the iBookstore on your own can be quite a difficult task. For one, you must have a Mac, not a PC. Even if you have a Mac, Apple’s procedures for publishing to the iBookstore are not crystal clear. Perhaps the best (and fastest) way to get your book into the iBookstore is to use an approved third party publisher.

This publisher will help format your book for you, then submit it to Apple. They’ll screen your book for any errors and let you know if there are any issues before your book is submitted, so you don’t risk getting rejected.

Lulu is one of the largest approved publishers in Apple’s network. They publish over 20,000 books every single month. Founded in 2002 by Bob Young, to date they’ve helped publishers from over 200 different countries get their works into the world.

Here’s how to use Lulu to publish your digital book on the iBookstore platform.

Step 1: Getting Started

Go to

Click “Publish.”


Then scroll down to “eBooks” and click “Start your eBook.”


Finally, click “I’m ready to publish” to begin the publishing process.


Step 2: Create Your Membership

Fill out the membership profile. Creating a membership is free. Lulu makes money from publishing your book, not from memberships.


Step 3: Title and Author

Write your book’s title and the names of the authors. If you want to add more authors, click the “+” button next to “Author.”

The title you enter will be a working title. Unlike other book publishing platforms, you can save your progress and not publish right away. If you want to change your title later, you can.

Your title should be carefully thought out before you launch. Try to brainstorm at least 25 potential titles before you settle down on one. Your title should pack an emotional punch. Someone who reads your title should be compelled to check out what the rest of your book is about.

Step 4: Check Sell on iBooks

You’ll be asked what you want to do with the project. If you’re ready to submit right away, click the third option. If you want to work on the book for a while before submitting, select the first option.

Keep in mind that you need to have everything right before you submit your book. About 50% of the books submitted to Lulu get disapproved because they did something wrong. If you’re not 100% confident in your book yet, wait until you’re ready before submitting it for approval.


Step 5: ISBN Number

You’ll be asked whether you want a free ISBN number, to use your own paid ISBN number or to use no ISBN number at all.

By and large, most people can get by with Lulu’s free ISBN numbers. However, if you really don’t want to list Lulu as the publisher for your book, you can choose to buy your own ISBN number from

If you choose the first option, your new ISBN number will be displayed on the very next page.


Step 6: Upload Your Book

Upload your DOC, RTF or EPUB eBook to Lulu. Before you upload, make sure that your book is formatted properly. Make sure your chapter titles are preceeded by a Page Break and that your images are centered. Follow the guidelines on Lulu’s formatting page to the letter before uploading your book.


Once your book is uploaded, you’ll see the file on the bottom of the page. Click “Save & Continue” to continue the publishing process.


Lulu will then begin formatting your book for you. Go get a cup of coffee while you wait for Lulu to finish this process.


Step 7: Create Your Marketing Image

Create the image you want to use as your marketing image. Your marketing image is what people see as the preview for your book in the bookstore, as well as what people see as your front cover.

Your marketing image is not actually inserted into your book as the cover. Your cover page inside your book is. The marketing image, as the name suggests, is used purely for marketing your book.

You can customize the background and the text to a great degree. Once you’ve created your image, Lulu will turn the graphic you created into a real graphic to be uploaded to the various bookstores your book is being uploaded to.


Step 8: Enter Your Description

Write the description for your book. Try to add as many credibility builders as you can, such as reviews from well known people or high quality testimonials from people who’ve read your book. Try to also highlight the best things that your book has to offer.

Download the iBooks app on an iOS device and take a look at how other people are writing their descriptions. How are they catching attention? How are they demonstrating credibility? How are they getting people to buy?

Your description is one of the most important selling tools you have in your arsenal. Don’t let it go to waste.


Step 9: License and Edition

Enter the name of the person who should hold the copyright to the book. Choose what kind of license you want the book to be published under. Choose what edition your book is currently in.


Step 10: Digital Rights Management

Lulu offers Digital Rights Management (DRM) services to its customers – For a fee. If you want to protect your book from being sent to others or from being “ripped” and uploaded to pirating sites, you’ll have to pay $0.25 cents per download to protect your book.


Step 11: Set Your Price

Set the price you want to sell your book at. Lulu will tell you what you’ll receive in royalties when someone buys your book on Lulu and anywhere else.


Step 12: Review, Save and Finish

Finally, you’ll be presented with all the options you’ve selected so far. You’ll be able to edit your working title, as well as preview how your book currently looks.

Look over everything on this page and make sure that everything looks the way it should. Once you hit “Save and Finish,” your eBook will be submitted to Lulu.


Once your book is submitted, you’ll need to wait a few days while Lulu manually reviews your book. If there are any errors in your submission, you’ll have to re-do your book and re-submit your book before it goes live.

One of the great things about Lulu is that you actually get real people you can interface with about your book submission process. If your book is having trouble getting approved, with Apple it’s very hard to get in touch with anyone. With Lulu however, you have a dedicated customer service team at your beck and call.

What are you waiting for? If you have a book ready for submission, getting it up and running on Lulu takes just a couple hours.

How to Publish a Paperback Book with Lulu

print_bookLulu specializes in print on demand items which include hardback books, paperback books, brochures, photo books, calendars, cookbooks, poetry books, ebooks, images, CDs, DVDs, and digital files. In this tutorial, you will learn how to create a print on demand paperback book and set up a free Lulu shop.

You will need:

  • Book graphics (plus front and/or back images)
  • Prewritten Book – contents in .doc, .docx or.rtf, but preferably in.pdf. format
  • Adobe Acrobat is highly recommended; alternately you may use their conversion service and pay to have your document converted. This can cost $99 or more. You can also create a PDF version with Microsoft Word.


Step 1: Create a member account

Create a member account by supplying information including your:

  1. Full Name
  2. Email Address
  3. User Name
  4. Password
  5. Country
  6. Language

Read and agree to the Membership Agreement and click the signup button. You will be taken to your “My Lulu” dashboard.




Scroll to the My Account section in the sidebar and edit your preferences.



Step 2: Select your project


Under “Start a new project” click on Paperback book if you want to create one.



Add a working title and your name.



Select who has access. You may want to keep it private until you get a bit of practice.


Click save and continue.

Step 3: Choose your project options


In this section you can select your preferences for your book’s paper type, size, binding, and printing color.



This book will be approximately letter size.






Click save and continue.


Step 4: Upload your PDF file


Check the PDF you’ve created, to make sure it meets the requirements for this book. If you want to make sure your PDF prints correctly, you may want to download this template in Word.

Once your document is formatted correctly, you may upload it.


When your document is uploaded correctly and without errors, you should see a success message at the top of your page. If you don’t have fonts embedded or something else is wrong, you will see an error message instead.



Click the “Make Print-Ready File” link. You’ll see a success message when it’s done and you’ll have a link to download and check it. Then click save and continue.



Step 5: Add the book’s covers


Now you will be taken to a cover wizard where you can create your cover pages and add images. If you created a full image for the cover, you may want to upload it and then drag and drop it on to the front cover and just use solid colors for the back and spine.


1. Select parts of the book to edit.

2. Choose background and text colors.


  • 3. Upload images to drag and drop into the photo areas.


When you’re done, click the preview and make print-ready button.


When it’s finished, you’ll see a success message and two links for you to preview both the cover and the book’s content.

Review, click save and continue.


Step 6: Review your project


Review your project and make any needed changes. The items you can change have a “change” button beside it.



After choosing the options you want, click the save and finish button.

You will then see a success page because your book has been published!

Next, you’ll need to set the preview for potential buyers.




Step 7: Set custom preview


The default preview is up to 10 pages. You may or may not want people to view that many pages of your book.

Make your changes. Click save and continue.


View the preview pages. Click the save and finish button. You then see the product page as potential customers would see it.

Once you have your book edited to your liking, you will need to change the private access (Step 6) so that you can set up your shop. Just go to your dashboard, click the revise next to the project and edit the access.

While you’re revising things, there is one more thing you’ll need to edit – your royalty fee! Click edit and add your royalty to the product price. Then click the “save changes” button.


Before you log out, make sure you’ve edited all of your account settings so you’ll be sure and get paid. That’s all there is to setting up an account and creating a paperback book.