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010 - How Do You Register Your Book?


One of the largest questions I had when I thought about writing was not related to content so much, but more the process. I know many authors struggle with the content – both organizing it and defining what is useful or worthy of sharing. But, perhaps you are like me and need to know how the rest of the process looks to know if you can do it.

I’m all about knowledge. I get a bit fogged up when I don’t see the full picture. For some though this might be too much to know… or they just don’t care to know it and just want a book. But for those need-to-know folks like myself I wanted to do a quick podcast to discuss the process of registering a book and how that relates to its distribution.

After all the composing and editing…before you can make a book a book it has to get registered in a few ways. The first is with the unique identifier called an ISBN Number. The second is the with Library of Congress.


Let’s first talk about the ISBN Number:

The ISBN is generally given to you by the publisher but it gets slightly trickier if you are self publishing. It’s a pretty easy process to get one, but the tricky part is that it is associated with a publishing imprint and name.

Many self-published authors get hung up here about how this should work. And many self published authors make the mistake of creating a publishing imprint on their own (and not doing that correctly) or buying one from a third party such as Amazon’s KDP for example.

When you go to sell your book later - how you get the ISBN matters. But, many authors don’t know this while they are creating their book. If you are only selling on Amazon this is not such a big deal, but if you want to be on stage speaking or are doing large events where bulk purchases of your book may occur then you will be asked for professional distribution for ease in attaining your book. A professional registration and an imprint matters here. Let me help you understand this further.

If you were to go into a library or a bookstore and asked them to carry your book they might ask you if you are set up with Ingrams or another large distribution network. This is what separates the self-published author that doesn’t know what they are doing from those that do…and the piece that separates us further from the standards of a traditional publishing model. In the eyes of these institutions a self-published book that doesn’t conform to this standard is considered “not a real book” in their eyes. So, if you want to avoid this pitfall then you may want to consider where you buy your ISBN Number from and how you distribute your book.

The other piece to consider is that when you do upload to either distribution or online stores your ISBN number is associated with the publisher and it will appear on the screen. If this is not a professional name or a poorly executed self-publishing attempt to be creative you will be discredited.

I offer a NY Imprint to my clients for ease of use, as having a NY imprint gives you the ability to showcase that you are “with a small publishing house in NY”…gives the impression of professionalism, but its just a simple address location. I explain this a bit more in the online book publishing training I offer.

Nonetheless, this is the unique identifier for each book format you produce and it’s required that you have one. Let’s move on to the LOC#.


Library of Congress:

Every book gets registered with this government body and it would sort of be considered the social security number of the book industry. The ISBN number might be a bit more like the driver’s license in comparison.

This process requires that you are registered with the LOC as a publisher. If you do not own your own publishing company you cannot get a number. Therefore, to control this process on your own requires a bit of back-stepping. It’s easy but it’s not something you should really mess with if you are not publishing more than one book…unless of course you have legal or other restrictions where you prefer to have more control…but even then it’s not entirely necessary.


Angel Dog Productions:

For my clients that go through my online book publishing coaching system I offer the ability to buy the ISBN and LOC numbers from me and they are registered under my Angel Dog Productions NY label and imprint. It’s not to make money and quite honestly is a bit more hassle than it’s worth on my end, but I felt it was the right solution so that I didn’t have to bring in another 3rd party publisher into my training and system. I thought it to be far too confusing and it would strip away the ease and control I want to have for the sake of my authors. 

Of course, there is always far more to discuss on all of these topics, but stay turned and I’ll keep sharing. Keep up and stay diligent on your book writing goals and good luck on your book project! 

Repurposed content from 2019 - Podcast 5 – How Do You Register Your Book?

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