Createspace Publishing ISBN vs Your Own
How to Get an ISBN Number
An International Standard Book Number is used to identify books, ebooks, and other publications. If you’re a publisher, self-publishing writer, or a company representative interested in putting out literature that can be easily catalogued, you should probably get an ISBN. The process of obtaining an ISBN varies somewhat from nation to nation. To begin the process, identify your national ISBN agency through the International ISBN Agency website. Click on your country and follow the directions provided by your national ISBN agency.
Gathering Necessary Information
Find your national ISBN agency.Open your browser, and visit the website of the International ISBN Agency. Click on the orange button labeled “Find an agency.”
- The website for the International ISBN Agency is available at .
Select the national agency in which your company’s headquarters is located.If you’re applying for an ISBN on behalf of a company or organization, choose the nation in which your company or organization is headquartered from the drop-down menu. Select this option even if your company or organization has multiple locations.
Select your nation if you’re not applying on behalf of a company.If you’re not applying for an ISBN on behalf of a company or organization -- that is, if you’re a traditional or e-book publisher; audio cassette, software, or video producers; or a representative of a museum or association with a publishing program -- you’ll also need to select the nation in which you’re based. Use the drop-down menu in the "Find an agency" page to choose your national agency.
Create an account with your national ISBN agency.In some cases, you might have to create an account with your national ISBN agency. The process by which you create an account varies. Generally, however, you’ll need to create a username and password. You may also be asked to confirm your account using an email address.
Completing the Application
Find your application.The path to the ISBN application varies from nation to nation. In some cases, after accessing the site of your national ISBN agency, the option to get an ISBN will be front and center. In other cases, you’ll have to hunt around the site a bit in order to find the application.
Pay the application fee.Along with your application, you may be expected to submit a processing fee. The cost of this fee varies depending on the nation in which you apply for an ISBN.
- The application should cite the cost of submitting the application. If it does not, ask your national ISBN agency about the cost and payment options.
Get your ISBN.The process by which you actually receive your ISBN depends on your national ISBN agency. In most places, you’ll receive an email alerting you that your application has been processed. You can then log in to your account and check your ISBN.
- In some cases you might get your ISBN number mailed or emailed to you.
- The length of time required for approval varies from place to place. Your national ISBN agency should be able to tell you how long you'll need to wait.
QuestionIs this ISBN number valid worldwide for my book?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerFrom what I understand, ISBN is valid worldwide because it's a unique number that can be identified internationally.Thanks!
QuestionDoes an ebook need ISBN?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerNothing needs an ISBN. ISBNs are used for the convenience of booksellers, libraries, and book distributors, not because they are mandatory.Thanks!
QuestionDo I need a barcode with my ISBN?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIf you're publishing a physical product, you'll likely need a barcode. Consult your publisher and national ISBN agency for more information.Thanks!
QuestionWhy do agencies charge for one ISBN? Isn't it supposed to be free if an author meets the conditions for its free use?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerCosts pertaining to the ISBN vary from nation to nation. In some countries ISBNs are free, while in others they can only be obtained by paying a fee. Fees are used to pay for administrative costs.Thanks!
QuestionA self publisher gave me an ISBN but I decided not to publish with them. Can I get my own ISBN and use the same title for my book?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt depends on your local and national copyright laws. Contact your national ISBN agency for more information.Thanks!
Can I as the publisher purchase a bar code if the price is not determined?
How much are the ISBN codes?
How can I get an ISBN for publishing a book from Nepal and what does it cost?
How do I get a ISBN for a British agency?
Sources and Citations
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Video: How to Get an ISBN Number
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