News room: We've simplified our print-on-demand publishing system, read about the updates here

We've simplified our print-on-demand publishing system, read about the updates here by Oliver Brooks

Hello fellow CompletelyNovellers,

I’ve been head-down working on simplifying our publishing process during the last week. I switched off all email, cancelled my meetings and knuckled down into some coding. I welcome feedback – what you think is better/worse than before, why and what you would like to see in the future. I will act on any feedback, so if you think something is not working or missing please let me know.

The publishing system has been the same now for about 9 months and over that time we’ve been collecting feedback from our questions area and customer service emails. There were only a few reccurring questions so I focussed on solving them. My main goal was to make a simplified process which did every bit as much as the old system.

These were the common questions and what we have done to update them (you can click on the images for a close-up).

What is the difference between a book, an edition and a revision?

The old portfolio put all your books, editions and revisions in the same place which made conceptualising the difference between them a little confusing. Now each one has it’s own place and conceptualising them should come naturally as you publish your works.


The new portfolio only show your books. A book is one or more editions with the same title.


There is a new editions page for each book. An edition is a specific setup of a book such as a paperback for the UK market, a paperback for the US market or an ebook. Editions normally have the same title but slightly different contents (such as localisations|localizations) or different distribution settings.

Revisions are managed in your edition manage area. A revision is a particular version of an edition, each time you finish the Book Creator a new revision will be created.

Where is my book available to buy?

In the old setup each book had a distribution tab which would list where a book is available and the price it was sold for. Unfortunately this tab was a little hidden away and so not everyone found it. As a result books often didn’t have a distribution price, BIC codes or an ISBN which prevented it from being distributed.

I did two things to simplify this:

  1. Now all price information is set in the Book Creator so it can’t be missed out
  2. Every book has an improved dashboard. When the book is published the dashboard shows the availability settings of your book on CN and in other channels. If the book is not available, it will tell you the steps which need to be taken to make it available.

How much royalty will I earn?

The information as to how much royalty will be earned was available in the old layout but in two completely separate places.

In the new system, all pricing and royalty information is set up in the Book Creator. Another comment was that it wasn’t clear how the cost was calculated. So I’ve tried to give a full break down of the royalty and cost structure with notes, and help to explain any jargon.

I’ve also included an overview of the royalty information in the book dashboard.

I hope you enjoy the updates, more to come soon…

3 Posts

    David Watkins


    02 Aug 21:16

    I thought i was all done and dusted until i saw this note today. I have been back to look kat the manage tab for my paperback and it now seems to want me to go right through the publish process again. Is that right? It seems to just want me to confirm the retail price details and suggests i can get straight to confirmation but then keeps putting me back to the manuscript and cover and all that again! In one sentence what do i need to do now if anything?

    David Watkins


    03 Aug 15:04

    OK I got bored and had another go through to publishing and that seems to have done the trick. Still seems very complicated to me – it is, I reckon impossible to get through it all to publish without missing stuff, it just uses up the credits I suppose!

    Georgina Lewis


    04 Aug 09:09

    Hi David, Sorry that was a bit frustrating. The way the process has been changed essentially means that there is less chance that there are any missing details for peoples’ books and ensures that people are happy with each aspect of their book before they publish. Where some information was missing from people who already had books set up it may have been a bit confusing having to go through the book creator again, but should be more straightforward from now on. Thanks for your patience.

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Oliver Brooks
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