Last time, I explained how self-published authors in the UK are required, by law, to offer copies of their book to the British Library. This post explained how you go about registering to become a publisher with access to their online submissions portal.
Since doing that, the British Library got in touch to check I was a bona fide publisher (they wanted to know where I was based, whether my books were available to the public, where I sold them and what file formats the ebooks were available in).
Having satisfied their requirements I was then granted access, which now allows me to upload my ebooks to them. So, having spent yesterday afternoon uploading everything (it was quite eye-opening being reminded how much I have self-published), I thought I’d show you what the process looks like (and it’s dead simple).
First of all, you need to log in with the username and password you created when setting up your account:
When logged in, you’re then presented with a screen asking you if you want the English version or the Welsh version, and this then takes you to this screen:
Click on the box to upload make a new ebook deposit:
Some browsers will allow you to drag and drop a file, others require you to browse your computer to select the file. The British Library requires either an epub or pdf file. A word about filenames. They prefer it if you save the file with a filename of the following format:
Book title, then the year and month of submission/uploading eg. Photography-for-Writers-2020-10
Once that’s uploaded, a new pop-up box appears, asking you for a little more detail:
- The Title
- The Remainder of the Title (such as any subtitle)
- The ISBN (This is not a compulsory field, so if your ebook does not have an ISBN you don’t need to enter anything.)
- Author (your name)
- Place of Publication (to check that you’re in the UK)
- Publisher Name (your name again, if you’ve self-published the book, or your imprint name, if you’re using one. Note, you may need a seperate log in with the British Library for each imprint name you use.)
- Year of Publication (Not the year you’re uploading your file, but when the book was actually published. This allows you to enter a back catalogue if needs be!)
- Edition (If it is the first edition you can leave this blank.)
- Submission description (This is just a brief summary of the book’s contents.)
So your completed information may look something like this:
Click on the Save button and you’ll then be taken tho this screen:
Click on the Complete Upload Process button.
That’s it. You’ll then receive and email from the British Library confirming your submission.
It’s as easy as that!