Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Smashwords Insists On A Table Of Contents Even For Short Stories

That actually turns to your advantage. However, the first time Smashwords refused to publish a short story of mine (3,102 words) because it didn’t have a Table of Contents I threw a temper tantrum. Then I realized it was a blessing. I only need one link to my story, but I could then link to my author page and each of my sample chapters. This accomplishes two things. First, it makes all your marketing material really easy for the reader top navigate. Second it informs the reader right at the beginning that there’s more in this short story than just the short story - that you are giving away free samples. It informs them of the additional material right in their sample package before they even buy the story. The Table of Contents on the digitals does not link to pages (you don’t paginate on the digitals because that shifts according to font size, table size and other factors) it links to chapter headings and titles. Then, as an added benefit, you can link directly to sales pages for your samples. Finally, since Smashwords makes a Table of Contents for you anyway – something along the lines of “beginning, middle and end” if you have posted one short story, you might as well take charge of the process and make a really good Table of Contents that you use as a marketing tool.

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