X is for exerting your own effort. I think for a little while I will do a post on the process of self publishing an e-book. The ends and out from a novice prospective.
Formatting the manuscript so that it can be uploaded and converted through Smashwords is not as hard as it seems. In the beginning I was totally afraid because of the stated prices to get a 'professional' to do it for you. I laugh at no one who can afford to pay up to $200 or more to have someone handle everything for them. But what do you learn for yourself?
To tell the truth, the biggest expense is valued in the amount of 'hours' it requires to strip and reformat your manuscript in Microsoft Word. Once you are able to do one successfully it gets easier and easier to do the next. At first I wasted many hours trying to format for the Kindle. That was enough of a horror to make me want to pull my nails with pliers. Not to mention wanting to toss the laptop to the wall.
Smashwords supplies you with a manual explaining what is needed and not needed in your manuscript. What they didn't tell you is that every minor bit needs to be formatted in the 'styles' section from your Word program. This section has things such as title, normal, quotes etc. Each part has to have the correct font, position, and letter size chosen. If not, when your book is converted nothing will look as you expect. Once the format is as clean and perfect as you can make it, then its time to set up your account with Smashwords.
I find learning and succeeding with new things totally exciting.