Self-Publishing Guide: Amazon Author Central

by Rachel Sawden
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Amazon’s Author Central is a free tool for authors who have published either an eBook or printed book through Kindle Direct Publishing. Through the dashboard, you can manage customer reviews and track book sales, but the main purpose is to personalize your Amazon Author page. This is one of your most important book marketing tools. You can include your biography, bibliography, blog posts, photographs, accolades, videos, and any news about yourself and your publishing career. This is the first step where you introduce and establish your brand as an author.

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How Do You Set Up Your Amazon Author Central Page?

  1. Go to https://authorcentral.amazon.com/ and click Join Now. You will be prompted to either set up a new account. If you have an existing Amazon account check in with that.
  2. Read the Author Central’s T&C and hit accept.
  3. Enter the name under which your books are written – real name or pen name, whatever you put as the author’s name when you uploaded your books to KDP. A list of possible book matches will display that correspond to your name that are available for purchase. If you can’t find the book, enter the ISBN/AISN
  4. Once you select one of your books your account will be created.
  5. You will be sent a confirmation via email, once you confirm your email address and identity, you’re all set.

You will then wait for your account to be approved. It may take up to seven days. You may be contacted to verify your identity during this time.

Once you are approved you can go ahead and personalize your Author Page.

How Do You Personalize It?

Biography:

Let’s start with your biography. Lay out your writing background, credentials, and accolades if you have them, and make it personal. People want to connect with you the human writer. Take time to work on it before you publish it. Look at other author bios that you think are great and model yours on that. Let some friends read it and see if it captures your voice and the essence of who you are. Sometimes we can struggle with this because we are too close. And sometimes as writers, we can be quite shy and humble – so don’t be afraid to sell yourself!

Multimedia:

If you do not have one, get a professional headshot taken (you’ll need this for your website). If you have photos of you writing,  attending writing conferences, throw those in. Is your book inspired by your travels somewhere? Pop those in too! Keep adding as your career advances with images from your book signing, attending writer events, or if you win contests.

The same goes for adding videos and linking your blog if you have one.

Claim your Books:

If you have more than one book published make sure to add all of your books to your Author Central Page.

Reviews:

I’ll get into more on this later, but you can, and should, add editorial reviews. These will be from review sites. Friend reviews are great, but if you know anyone in the industry with any authority, adding a couple of reviews by them before you launch will help with your book’s success. Get your friends to post reviews as customer reviews later.

Now that that step is done, the next step is to: Set Up Your Author Website.

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