isbns-3If you published your print versions with free ISBNs from CreateSpace but want to switch to using your own ISBNs and distribute to both CreateSpace and IngramSpark, follow along and I’ll show you step-by-step how I transitioned from using free ISBNs to paid ISBNs. 

Prep for the Transition

Create an account with IngramSpark

You’ll need all the typical information that is required to set up a new account:  business name and structure, tax info, and credit card because Ingram charges a set-up fee. (But watch for coupons/discounts that let you waive the set-up fee.) 

Buy ISBNs from Bowker – you can purchase individually or in bulk

Download and save The Book Designer’s free ISBN logbook, an Excel spreadsheet to track your ISBNs

I added a column to the spreadsheet for page count. You could also add columns for 1st Edition Date and 2nd Edition Date. 

Format print interiors

I outsourced this step. My original print versions were DIY and I wanted a more polished look. Make sure to update your interior file to reflect that you are releasing a new edition:

Copyright 2014, 2016
Second Paperback Edition: Oct 2016
First Paperback Edition: September 2014

Reformat covers

This was another step that I outsourced. Because the interior file had changed, the page count had changed, so the spine was a different size.

You’ll need two covers – CreateSpace and Ingram have different requirements. I have read that some people use their CreateSpace cover at Ingram, but I wanted the price on the barcode of my Ingram cover, something that bookstores like to see, so I used Ingram’s cover template generator (you have to be logged into your account to see the template page) and sent that file to my cover artist.

barcode-mazeContact CreateSpace and request they retire your first editions

Contact Support tab > More options > Retiring a title
Include the ISBN of the old version and request they retire the title. Send a separate request for each title. CreateSpace will email when the title is retired. 

CreateSpace will retire the title, but because Amazon allows sales of used items the book will still appear on the website. It will not be available to purchase. 

Upload New Files 

Upload at CreateSpace first

Unlike IngramSpark, CreateSpace doesn’t charge a fee to upload or make changes, so work out any technical issues with CreateSpace first.

Create a new title and upload as normal. In the field for Edition, simply type the number “2” and CreateSpace will list the book as a second edition.

Make a note of the price points you set for US and International Amazon markets. (At this point, use the Ingram price tool to see if the price you set on CreateSpace is feasible for IngramSpark. Ingram has more variables, so work with the options until you’ve got a price you’re happy with. More links on Ingram’s pricing below in the IngramSpark section.)

Wait for interior review, once it’s complete and you’re satisfied with the proof, move on to IngramSpark.

Upload at IngramSpark

Use the help doc to walk you through the process, if you have questions.

Three important things:
If you’re using an imprint, you must add it under Categories.

In the Edition field, the correct format for IngramSpark is “2nd.”

Don’t forget to add your bio – it’s a hidden field.
About Contributor > add bio details in the dropdown box

You’ll have to decide about prices and how much of a discount you’ll set for your books as well as whether you want to allow returns. Kboards has several threads about the subject. To see how your royalty will vary, use the pricing tool (must be logged into your Ingram account to see the pricing tool). Once I entered all my pricing info, I took a screen shot of the pricing table so I’d have a list of prices for my next upload.

Only A Few More Things…

After titles are live on Ingram, return to Bowkerlink and add the details about your book so it will show up in Books in Print.

The Book Designer has a great article on how important metadata is for your book.

Update your links on your website.bookshelf-01-2400px

And that’s it! It sounds like a convoluted process but it’s really not that bad. I’ve switched one series over to both CreateSpace and IngramSpark and the other series is in the works. I found that is best to do a few books at a time, not a whole series at once.

I hope this was helpful. :)