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Bowker Confusion



  • Erik Istrup Publishing

    It all seem to be data you type in when you create a new title in Ingram Spark.
    Check if these data are on the title's settings page. If it is, you must get Ingram Spark to re-send data to Bowker.
    I have always found the international support most helpful:

  • Karen Joy Davy

    Thank you, Erik, for this response. So, if I understand correctly, I must register the title with Ingram Spark first, is that right?

    So my order of operations should be this:

    1. Get both the print book and ebook into proper files, register title with Ingram Spark, and upload them. 

    2. Then I contact my cover designer and ask her to put the ISBN and bar codes on the print book and the ebook.

    3. Then I go to Bowker and register the ISBNs and bar codes for the books

    Is this right? 

    Thank you once again.

  • Karen Joy Davy

    PS. I just realized that what I wrote as an "order of operations" doesn't make sense actually. Because the designer can't put ISBNs on the book covers if I haven't registered them yet, or can she?

    I would love to have an ordered check list, because it does seem that some things must be done before certain other things, and since this is my first experience with Ingram Spark, I'm a bit confused.

    Thank you.

  • Erik Istrup Publishing

    Ingram Spark don't provide you with the ISBN.

    You can open an account by Ingram Spark, but all your files must ready before you add the title on Ingram Spark.

    When you have the account, there are a lot of help, both form their support and on the website and from downloadable materials.

    You need four files: Inside book file in pdf, wrap-around cover file in pdf (get template from IS), e-book file in epub, and a front cover picture in for example jpg.

    You can't get the cover template before you know the binding (hard or soft) and paper type. It is here you will use your ISBN. (The ebook must have its own ISBN).


    So 1) Open an account. 2) Find out what IS needs to publish your book. 3) Publish you book. (I don't think you have to get in touch with Bowker, or is just for the US? I think IS will do that.)

  • Metaphorosis

    For the US, you need to first acquire your ISBN. That's done one of two ways:

    1. your book sale venue may provide one for free or for a fee. In that case, it's only usable for that venue, so it's unlikely you'd be using it on IngramSpark.
    2. you buy an ISBN through Bowker. Their website is awkward, and their ISBN prices are high, but this is the only way to get a transportable ISBN for US use.

    Once you buy the ISBN from Bowker, you can use it anywhere. You'd need to enter it on IngramSpark for your planned book. You can (perhaps should, for discoverability) also enter details of your book on Bowker's site. You can do this in either order, and you can skip filling in the Bowker site entirely if you choose. The only thing you have to do with them is buy the ISBN. That's before you do anything else.

    The above image suggests that on the Sales and Pricing tab of the Bowker book entry page, you listed Spain and the UK as countries where the book will be for sale, but didn't enter the required information about price, date, etc. If you delete those countries (top of page) that may clear it up.

  • Erik Istrup Publishing

    What are the ISBN price(s) in the US?

    In Denmark we get the numbers for free. Either 10, 100 or 1000 at one time.

  • Metaphorosis

    1       ISBN is $125

    10     ISBN is $295

    100   ISBN is $575

    1000 ISBN is $1,500

    In essence, they're ridiculously expensive except in bulk. They do often have sales of 25% or so. Of course, I didn't learn this until after buying in bulk.

  • Erik Istrup Publishing

    Wow! That really add to the costs!

  • Metaphorosis

    It's a terrible system. I ended up buying 1,000 (they were a bit cheaper then), which means I have hundreds of extras. Of course, these days, ISBNs aren't quite so essential.

  • Erik Istrup Publishing

    I am close to run out of my 10+100, but there are still a way up to 1,000!

  • Karen Joy Davy

    Thank you, Erik and Metaphorosis, for your clarifications. It helps a lot. And I need all the help I can get. I will be back with more questions, no doubt.

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