Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs / The FAQ's on this page cover general company questions as well as eBook FAQs - Please visit our POD page for more specific answers regarding our POD services.




Q. What makes First Edition Design better than other eBook file conversion services?

A. We care about our client’s files and manually format and convert each one for submission. Most services that advertise “free” conversions never even look at a client’s file. They do it all on autopilot. If the file is junk—that’s what gets submitted to the on-line retailer, and in many cases it is rejected for that very reason. We’ve seen all kinds of corrupted files come in to us. We don’t let them out until they are right. Clients who want it done correctly usually end up going through a paid-for service.

Our team of professionals each average 20 years experience, bringing a wealth of knowledge and experience to each client.

Best of all - our prices. We are the most competitive in the industry. We have never lost sight of our objectives and that is to bring the latest technology to our clients at affordable pricing.


Q.  Do I keep the rights to my book?

A. Yes. You keep control of your rights and content of your book. We act as an Agent/Publisher, not a Traditional Publisher. Although, for the purpose of submitting and managing your eBook, we retain temporary rights (granted by you when you obtain our services) as an ePublisher which authorizes First Edition Design eBook Publishing to submit your eBook through distribution outlets. As a company, our intent is not to control ownership at any time of your book. You have the right at any time to make changes, control the pricing, and control the distribution. We do not retain any royalties of your eBook. Our services are only for those that hold the rights to their own works. Retaining our services under false pretense of ownership is punishable under federal law.  All books that we submit for distribution are done so with digital rights management (DRM). DRM restrictions include limiting copying, printing, and sharing of e-books.


Q.  How often are royalties distributed?

A.  Quarterly. - It will take a few months before you receive your first set of royalties. We do not receive real time numbers, we have to wait for venues to send us reports and funds before we can release them to you. After the first set catches up in the system, you should see regular payments, multiple times a month from various venues during the pay cycle. .


Q. Some other companies let you pick the discounted rate - can I do this with First Edition Design Publishing?

A. YES and NO. Depending on the various venues and contracts we have in place - we maximize the highest royalty rate along with the widest distribution for your book. First Edition Design Publishing has founded its business practice on the largest visibility possible for each and every title. We believe every potential reader around the world should have access to your title. This is why we pride ourselves on having the largest distribution in the industry. Almost all our contracts are listed with a 30% - 40% discount on POD an 30% on eBook. In order for us to calculate your exact royalty return on a POD we need the final page count of your book and the suggested retail price. We like to ensure all POD authors retain at least $3.00 per copy sold. You are always welcome to send in your manuscript for a free evaluation.

POD Shelving Rate is a different type of program. The industry dictates that if your book is listed with a 55% trade discount and your book has 'return status', your title is eligible to be accepted for bricks and mortar shelving. This can include retail stores such as Barnes & Noble, Wal-Mart, Target, Grocery Stores, Gift Stores, Costco, Sams Club, Specialty Stores such as Williams and Sonoma and the like. In order to participate in this program you have to make sure you do two things - one, on the submission form that you submit to us, after you place your order - make sure you check the box that says '55%' and make sure you order the 'bookseller return program' for the territories you are interested in. We will work with you to optimize the suggested retail pricing in ensure a fair royalty is programmed into the pricing. The 'bookseller return program' is good for 2 years. You will automatically receive a renewal statement at 23 months. At that time you can decide if you want to continue with the program or not. If you choose to discontinue the program, just send us an email at the time you receive the new invoice and we will reverse the fee out and cancel the 'bookseller return program' at completion of the 24 months. If this program is something you are interested in, it is highly recommended that you order the program from the onset of your order, as ordering the program at a later date can cause much delay in propagating the discount and a return status, not to mention if the pricing is not correctly listed on the back of your book to reflect a 55% discount, you will have to pay an additional 165.00 re-submission fee to have the cover re-priced correctly. This is not to say it cannot be done after the fact that your book has already been circulated, however the process will be more costly and not time efficient. Booksellers like to see this status from the release of a new title and are more prone to consider the title for shelving, than if these changes take place after the book is already been circulating.


Q. How do I track my sales?

A.  Various times throughout the month we will process royalty payments. You will be made aware of these statements as they will be emailed to you. You will also be able to log into your First Edition Design Publishing online account and view all statements. These statements will be housed in your account forever. At anytime you can view these. Due to our vast distribution, we cannot track sales real time. We can only track them when we receive the sales statements from each distribution venue. Once we receive our statement and payment we enter that into our system and pay you that royalty. We process statements all throughout the month. Each statement you receive normally will be from one venue . We normally do not mix venues on statements. Example - you may get an statement from Amazon one week and Google the next and maybe worldwide distribution the following.


Q.  Understanding the royalty process.

A.. First Edition Design Publishing is a Master Distributor. Our database of distribution partners has grown to over 10,000. Not all books go to every venue. It depends on the type of book. Most books are distributed to at least 1000 or more venues. Due to our vast distribution territory, it is impossible to track sales in real time. We report to you on a monthly basis the sales that are reported to us from our various distribution partners. We do not count a sale as a sale until we have received payment. All payments are processed within the same month as receipt. You will receive a detailed statement along with payment monthly. Most venues do not issue payment within the same month as when the book sold. As an example - Payments we send out in June are most likely from sales that took place in March, but keep in mind, we didn't receive that statement or payment for the books that sold in March until the month of June. The variance can be anywhere from 60 days to 6 months. Each venue is different. However; the month we receive payment, regardless of what month the book sold, is the same month we will send you a royalty payment.


Q. How are the royalties reported on the statements that are provided?

A.  The statements that we provide you are sent to you via email and contains a link to your online account.. That same statement is housed in your online account at First Edition Design Publishing and can be accessed by logging into your account and clicking on the statement link.. Ebook statements and POD statements are sent out separately. POD statements are sent out once a month and contain the ISBN, title, qty of books sold, royalty amount and total. The royalty amount on all POD books should always be the same, except in rare instances. If the amount varies on the POD sales it will be noted on the statement.

Ebook reporting is slightly different. We do not put the quantity of books sold on the ebook report for various reasons. The reason for the number of books being sold is eliminated from the report due to the royalty amounts on each ebook sold varies not only from venue to venue, but within the same venue as well. We do make a distinction when an ebook sells for far below the average 70%. We will give you a separate line item that notes if the royalty falls into the 35% category due to undeveloped country sales. As an example, distribution venues can charge small misc fees - although they equate to pennies, the pennies are enough to cause different amounts on each book sold depending on the location of sale, if the book was returned, bandwidth usage, chapter or page count download from libraries, etc.

As a master distributor it is not feasible for us to list all details of each transaction for each ebook sold on a line item by line item basis. Authors and publishers sell 100's if not 1000's of books per title every month - which does not allow for us to provide such detailed information. We do provide the distribution point (Tier One) where the title was sold, the gross royalty from that venue and country if applicable.

If you are trying to figure out the quantity sold, just divide the estimated royalty amount of 70% into the gross royalty. This will provide you with a good estimate on the number of books sold. 95% of all venues that we have negotiated with have a rate of 70% or the venue already has a published rate of 70%. Some are higher and some are lower. Please check with the venues online to review their published rates. Our rates are either the same as the published rate or higher. Google is the lowest, running at around 50 - 55%.

Regarding the period of when the books are sold, we send out royalty reports within 30 days of receipt. All venues run on a different time frame, therefore it would be near impossible for us to list such detailed, real time information. For all intense purposes, the time period should be based when we send you the royalty report and you just need to figure the title sold within the last 30 - 90 days.


Q. Do I have to reach a certain amount of royalties before I receive payment?

A.  No. Whatever your reported royalty is for the quarter —you are paid, regardless of the amount.


Q. How do you send out payments?

A.  Payments are made via PayPal. We have chosen Paypal as our payment provider as they are the most secure. You manage your account and we do not retain any personal banking information. Your banking relationship is between you and PayPal. They are also very flexible - as you can have your money deposited to you via your bank account, credit card, debit card - etc. If you do not have a PayPal account, do not worry - upon first payment sent to your email address that you have given us, PayPal will walk you through setting up your account online. The process is quick and easy.


Q. How do I price my eBook?

A. That is your judgment call, however we can make recommendations after we review your title.. We can recommend for short stories $2.99 - $4.99, novels $5.99 - $8.99. Pricing below the $2.99 limits where we can distribute. Also please keep in mind, although you are setting the price and we are submitting your suggested retail cost - some distribution venues maintain the right to adjust the suggested retail cost. Google at times discounts the eBooks as much as 25%. Please refer to any of the distribution sites for their terms and conditions. Although all venues have the right to discount your eBook / POD, that doesn't mean your royalties are discounted. Most booksellers absorb the discounts through their profits.


Q.  How long does it take to upload my book to the various distribution points?

A. First Edition Design eBook Publishing retains the right to take up to 5 days for your book to go through our process of formatting, converting and checking for errors. After that, it depends on the distribution point. Some sites will have your book available within the hour after being properly formatted and passing their formatting checker. Some sites take a little longer but usually within 2-60 days. As of June 1, 2011, we are letting clients know the process is taking as long as 30 days for some venues to make your eBook live. Apple takes the longest due to their stringent requirements for acceptance. We do not control acceptance of your book into all venues - distribution points have the right to reject any book for any reason. We do make efforts to assure acceptance, however we cannot guarantee any acceptance to any venue.

Overall we reserve the right to take up to 60 days to cover any delay that is possible with the distribution venues. Copyright issues can cause the longest delays.


Q. Does FED hold other certifications?

A. We are licensed Apple developers, Microsoft Solution Providers, SEO Certified and hold a host of other professional certifications and licenses.


Q. How can First Edition Design Publishing guarantee acceptance of my book to Apple and the others sites?

A. We cannot guarantee acceptance of any eBook or POD. However if we do have an issue with any distribution point we would work very closely with them until we correct any issue they may have with your eBook or POD. With that said, we have never had a rejection due to the scrutiny we put each book through. We catch the glitches before it goes out the door. Distribution venues do maintain the right to control content on their sites - therefore if you are writing a book that can be libelous, it most likely will not get placed.


Q. Do I need an e-ISBN/ISBN to publish my book on-line? Can I supply you with my own ISBN?

A. Yes - you have to have an ISBN, (but we provide them for you FREE) that is how search engines will find your book and match keywords as well as provide a host of detailed information. Although some distribution points do not require an ISBN, most of the larger retailers require one. We will assign one to you at no charge. Different media types of products require a different ISBN. Our ISBN's are registered to us and therefore we use all the functionality of the ISBN to help market your eBook and POD (print) to various distribution points. We apologize, however we cannot use your ISBN.


Q. How will readers know where to find my book?

A.  A Google search or any search engine of the book title and authors name will show your books availability. Most people have a favorite eBook or print book retailer; they will find your eBook or POD through the search engines of the retailer. You should also add a link to your eBook and POD sellers on your web site. Publishing the ebook and POD is only the first step. Once we convert and submit, that gives you your product – now you have to market your product.


Q.  If First Edition Design Publishing is submitting my eBook to over 100,000 on-line locations, why don’t they all show up in a Google search?

A. Google searches will readily reveal your eBook and POD availability at the locations where most of your readers shop: Amazon, Apple’s iBookstore, Barnes & Noble, Google eBookstore, Sony, Diesel and many more on-line retail outlets. Many locations, such as schools, universities, private book clubs, retail stores, organizations, etc., have secure internal databases within their intranet. These are not made available to the public, but can be accessed by registered users who have a login and password to enter their system.


Q. Do I need to format my manuscript for submission to First Edition Design?

A. Yes and No. Most files are very workable. However, there are a couple things you can do which will maintain the integrity of your book.

1. Table of Contents (TOC) and Chapters – please make sure if you have Chapters, that the chapters say “Chapter”. Example – “Chapter 1” or “Chapter One” or “Chapter – Why Blue Birds Fly”. Please make sure if you have a TOC, the Table reflects / mirrors the content in the book. Example – TOC states “Chapter One” and inside the book says “Why Blue Birds Fly” (this is incorrect) – they both should say “Chapter One – Why Blue Birds Fly” If you have endnotes - please make sure that you place the word "Endnote" in front of the chapter you are noting. Example -" Endnote - Chapter One" is correct - "Chapter One" is incorrect. If this is not properly identified our system will pick this up as an additional chapter and list it in the TOC.

2. Please do not put anything in front of the title page. If you do, we move it under the title page. Knowing this gives you the option to move this information somewhere else that you may feel is more appropriate. Remember, by default we move this info under the title page or the end of the book..

3. Hard breaks in words or at the end of a line. Please do not manually put these into your manuscript. We cannot guarantee that we are able to remove and fix this type of error. The only hyphen/break in a word that is acceptable is one that is intentional for grammatical purposes, not one that makes the justification look better. The forbidden text box can not be submitted to us - we cannot work with these. Please take them out and just place the text in the document, same rule pertains for pictures, do not put them in a box—just paste them into the document.


4. Most of our distribution partners have a proprietary system for formatting. Although we have to give them clean, formatted and converted files (as per dictated industry standards) - they will still run the files through their proprietary system. This means that some formatting that you placed in your book may not stick. Please remember that eBooks are not print books. eBooks are concerned about text, uniform sizing, singular font, proper spacing, etc. The user has the ability to customize their reading experience. It is not for us to force a certain style. Here at First Edition Design Publishing - all of our eBooks have a uniform title page, uniform font and sizing. This is what is required by us from our distribution partners and industry standards in order to provide the end user with the best reading experience. We do understand as an author you have put a lot of hard work into formatting your book, unfortunately the eBook world has standards in order to provide the reader with a format that is uniform.


5. An eBook is one long continuous file, therefore headers, footers and footnotes will be taken out of your book. If you want to keep your footnotes, reformat the information to the back of the book as endnotes and please remove all number references within the body of the book.


Q. Is there a preferred type of file to submit to FED?

A. Our first choice for your file is a Word Doc. If you do not have a Word Doc, please submit the native file that the manuscript was written in. If we have a problem, we will call you and work with you until we get it right! 75% of all PDF's that we receive work just fine.


Q. Can I have extra lines between paragraphs or chapters?

A. Typically no. Anything more than three line spaces jumps to a new page, which leaves blank pages in-between. We are sure you do not want that. You want your eBook to be pleasing to the reader. We take out all lines in order to provide a continuous flow of text. Some formats like the ePub, we will format as needed to supply chapter breaks and proper spacing as well as seachable and linked TOC.


Q. How come my eBook and print book have a different number of pages?

A. When your files are formatted for eBook, they are formatted and converted in a way that makes the text is continuous, thus removing many spaces. You also have to keep in mind that eReaders come in all different sizes. A typical 300 page book may appear as 2000 pages on an eReader. Most eReaders do not keep track of pages, but measures the eBook by percentage. Example – if someone reads the first 100 pages of a printed book, the eReader will recognize that as 33% read, not 100 pages read.


Q. Why are the page numbers eliminated from my eBook?

A. Again, eBooks are a whole different animal than print books. The e-Reader doesn’t see your file as individual pages, but as one continuous file. That’s why many e-Readers show the percentage of pages read as opposed to page numbers. It’s showing you how far into that file you are.


Q. Can First Edition Design do eBooks with color, graphs, pictures, etc.?

A. Yes and no. If you submit your file with color pictures and the e-reader is black and white; the picture will only appear to be black and white to the reader. You also have to keep in mind an e-reader is smaller than a printed book. Therefore viewing any details of a picture will be very difficult for the user.

The format of the picture cannot be wrapped around any text. The picture must reside either at the top or under a block of text. If you submit your book with graphics and the picture is not formatted properly, we will move the picture to the top or bottom of the corresponding text area.

One other option is to remove the picture and provide a link as to where the picture resides. You can set up an html page with your pictures, upload the page, right click on the picture and copy picture link. Insert the link instead of submitting the picture. The text of the link should be “picture”. The reader will know to tap on the “picture” link to view.

Please keep in mind e-readers can vary in size from 3 x 5 inches (some even a little smaller) to the size of an iPad. The user controls how they view the eBook.


Q. Do I have to pick a format type from the formats listed? Example: HTML, Java, .mobi, ePub, RFT, LFR, PDB and plain text?

A. No. FED will automatically format your manuscript or finished book from any file type and convert it to the correct format for submission to the various distribution points.


Q. What’s the cost to me?

A. For eBook formatting, submission and distribution to Apple, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Sony, Kobo, Diesel, Google and over 100,000 more eBook worldwide distribution sites there is a one-time fee per title of $149 standard or $199 premium. This includes a free ISBN for all ebook publications and one year auto submissions to distribution points added to our database.
Submissions are subject to net proceeds from retailers advertised royalties. First Edition Design charges a 4.25% monthly service fee. This fee covers maintenance, consolidated accounting and support.


Q. Can I combine items to create a custom package?

A.  Sure, on orders of three or more items. Send us an e-mail with the items you want and we will provide a custom quote.


Q. Do you accept submissions in Spanish or any other non-English written manuscripts? My manuscript is written in Spanish, can I still send this to you?

A. We do accept submissions in Spanish or any other non-English written manuscript. Submissions in non-English will receive the same vast distribution that we offer as over 70% of our venues accept non-English titles. However all non-English manuscripts will be required to pay the non-English verification fee.


Q. What changes can be made without additional charge?

A. We allow price changes (after 60 days), meta data and any administrative information.


Q. What changes cost additional fees?

A. Any text changes, re submittal of manuscript, re-conversion of files, etc will incur additional fees. When you submit your book to us, it needs to be complete. We do not offer any changes of text or graphics on submitted work. Please double and triple check your work to avoid additional charges. Any change will incur a new submittal fee of $65.00 on Ebooks (interior or cover) $130.00 for both. $165.00 on PODs (interior or cover) $330.00 for both. We will not make the changes for you - you will have to make the changes and re-submit the order. Please email us for exact pricing as it can vary - these prices are maxium re-submit cost.

Book Status Change Link


Q. What can I do to qualify for a publisher wholesale account?

A. You must submit a minimum of 5 titles on your first order to receive publisher status. No exceptions allowed. If you would like to perform a test submission, please use our regular channels on our web site.


Q. Do I need to have my book available in print before I can create an eBook?

A. No. You can choose to publish your book solely as an eBook or solely as a POD.


Q. Do you edit or proof read my book with your standard submission service?

A. No. We assume that the file you send us has been edited and corrected. We do not look for, or change, errors in spelling, punctuation or grammar. However, we will remove double spaces between sentences and extra spaces within words. We also remove any tabbing and spacing between paragraphs. One example we see a lot – the word “It’s” is submitted to us with a space between the “t” and the apostrophe. We will remove that space.


Q. What other services does First Edition Design Publishing provide?

A. We offer proofreading, which includes typographical, grammatical, punctuation, fragmented sentences, spelling, and prep formatting for conversion for eBook. You will receive your document back in a word doc and PDF. (Must submit documents in their native format) We also offer a formatting and conversion service only – you receive formatted and converted files in PDF, DOC, ePub. For updated costs on these services, please check our web site, send us an email or give us a call.


Q. Will you provide me with my converted files?

A. Unfortunately we do not release our working files. Our primary service is to format and convert the files we receive and submit them to various distribution points in their correct format. Our clients are not buying a tangible item from us, they are buying the service of our submissions. Our internal working documents are useless to anyone other than to us internally. We do offer other services that offer conversion only where the client is paying strictly for a copy of a file in a PDF, DOC or ePub format. Please see our web page under "Packages". If you are only looking for a PDF, give us a call for pricing.


Q. Where is my eBook and or POD (print) distributed?

A. Our distribution list has grown and is continuing to grow. We cover all major online retailers, schools, universities, libraries. Our territory is worldwide and we are very active in over 140 countries. As an example - Apple added 26 new countries, and we jsut added over 1700 venues in South America and Google just added Italy. Major distribution to the schools and libraries is worldwide in over 100 countries. Estimated potential readership of any of our books is in the billions!


Q. What about cover art?

A. If you do not already have a cover for your book, our team of designers can provide you with a professional cover design. Please see our packages page for pricing. If you already have your cover art or you are planning on designing on your own cover - please make sure your specifications are the following: minimum 100dpi and 1200 x 1800 for ebook and 300dpi and 1800 x 2700 for POD.


Q. Do you offer illustration services?

A. YES - you can buy single illustrations or full book up to 15 illustrations. You can work back and forth with the illustrator to get just the perfect look and feel for your book.


Q. Do I need to copyright my book?

A. Current law states that your copyright on your written work is implied and protected without registering with the US Copyright Office. We always make sure on the title page we insert "copyright / year YOUR NAME". This is sufficient to imply your ownership.


Q. If my manuscript in not in English, what do I need to know?

A. We do accept all manuscripts in every language, however we do not have the staff to verify and edit. There are just too many languages to process. Therefore we have a third party firm that will review your title for us to verify the content. We have to know that we are publishing a legitimate title. You are responsible for submitting a completed and fully edited manuscript to us. We prefer a WORD DOC, as that will produce an error free conversion, with very little risk. As with all POD submissions you will receive a proof that you will be responsible for reviewing. Please triple check all work, as we cannot be your eyes. We can only produce a correctly formatted manuscript for distribution. Upon your final approval on all POD submission, we will run your title back through the verification process, at no additional charge to you.


Q. Why is my book listed on some bookseller sites listed as rare, used, new, autographed or just priced very high or very low from a company or person I never heard of?

A. Welcome to the world of used books, or pretend used books.
Most of these booksellers are following a horrible precedent that Amazon has demonstrated as something very profitable to them corporately, yet a very despicable practice that is frowned on by publishers and authors. This is the practice of new/used sales by unauthorized persons. These unauthorized sales technically are not illegal, just not very moral. These are people that prey on other people’s ignorance. They say they have a used or new copy of a book and list it slightly lower than the authorized bookseller or much higher than the authorized bookseller. When they list the book at a lower price they make up the difference in the shipping charges they hit the buyer with. When the unauthorized bookseller lists the price much higher, they give the impression to the unknowing that the book is rare or worth much more money and the buyer is getting a deal.

This does not mean the seller has the book in hand – they attempt to buy the book once they have an order for the book – therefore they buy the book new and there is only an extremely small chance, if any that they are really buying a used book.

How does this actually affect the author? The author is still getting the royalty from the sale as this predatory seller still has to supply the book, thus they normally will buy the book from the same company they are advertising on. However, sometimes if the predatory seller cannot buy the book they will return the money to the buyer, less a small fee for processing the order. They can do this all day long and just make money of the return fee and not supply a book. It also does not lend credibility to the author as it presents an odd and not so straight forward approach to selling a book, which can be misconstrued.

Our stance as a publisher is that we feel Amazon and the like should only allow these predatory sellers to sell a book in the manner set forth: if the book is not active and live from the publisher or if the book is truly a used book and is being resold.

What can you do about this issue? Call and write letters to the booksellers that condone this practice. Hopefully if enough people complain, they will change their policy.


Q. Do you send out annual W2 or 1099 tax forms.

A. No, we do not send out any tax forms. Technically the monies we send you are not considered royalties by definition. A royalty is when a person or company pays the owner to use their copyright in order to use their product, book, song, intellectual property for profit. We do not pay our authors and we do not profit from the sale of your titles. We do not retain any monies gathered from your sales. This practice is in compliance with the U.S. tax law. You are responsible for claiming your own income. If you have questions on how to claim your income, please consult your accounting tax expert. To calculate your sales, please log into your FEDP account and click on ‘account statements’. Every statement with a ‘zero’ balance is a ‘commission’ report. Please click on those statements to view. You can also go to your PayPal account and filter the amounts received by First Edition Design Publishing.


Q. Cancellations / Removals of titles / Refunds

A. Please read our terms and conditions for detailed policies. For removals, re-instatements and changes please click on this link -




First Edition Design eBook Publishing, Inc.
PO Box 20217
Sarasota, Florida 34276
Support @ firsteditiondesign.com
941-921-2607 tel
941-866-7510 fax

In order to use our services you must agree to our Terms and Conditions as well as own eBook rights to your book in order for First Edition Design to publish electronically.

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