1. Write the book. Rewrite the book. Proofread the book.
2. Come up with a title for the book. (Throughout my career, I always come up with the title before I write the book.)
3. Decide on what size you want it to be.
4. Create your own cover.
Once you decide what size the book should be, you should paste your entire book into an Amazon Basic Template.
(I do my books in 5 inches x 8 inches.)
Basically, I write the book in the basic template from the beginning. Easier. You can see what you will get as you go along.
Short is the name of the game. Like Novel Secrets (nonfiction) or Option To Die (fiction)
With nonfiction you can add a subhead like: "Writing a GOOD Novel for CreateSpace and Kindle Publication."
With fiction you can have a subhead like "A Veronica Slate mystery series."
The harder your title is to read makes the book harder to sell.
By using the template, everything is the way it needs to be for publication in paperback. Once you proofread the book, you can simply send the file to CreateSpace.
Don't waste money on things to "format" your book. CreateSpace created the template to help you.
And CreateSpace will also talk to the folks across the hall at Kindle Direct Publishing to publish your eBook.
Another big mistake is to hire someone to create your cover. You can do it yourself. Even covers from big New York publishers are more simple than ever before. Look at some. (These were among the best covers of 2016)
The biggest thing to remember about your cover is that your reader will first encounter it looking like this:
NOT LIKE THIS: