Resources for Self-Publishers

Please note:

I only include links on this page that have been recommended by at least one person I know. However, inclusion on this page is not a personal endorsement of any person or company. You own your own publishing choices. Choose wisely.

Also, some of the services and tools may overlap or spill into other categories, so check the web sites for specifics.


Sections

Do-It-Yourself Tools
Ebook and POD Publishing
Fonts
Photos and Illustrations
Random for Writers
Services:
• Artwork and design
•
Editing, Copyediting, Proofreading
• Formatting
• Legal
• Marketing
• Packages
• Translation
Writer Beware

Do-It-Yourself tools

• AutoREALM, open source vector drawing software for maps and RPGs
• Book Report, analyzes your Amazon sales data
• calibre, ebook formatting software
• Canva, simple online graphic design
• CJ’s Easy as Pie Kindle Tutorials, Kindle formatting in MS Word
• Color-Hex, find hexadecimal codes for colors, with related colors, contrasting colors, and more
• Create Covers with PowerPoint (tutorial)
• DAZ 3D, 3D modeling software
• Declan Conner’s POD Formatting Guide
• DIY Book Covers, customizable book cover templates
• Epub Validator (free)
• GIMP, open source graphics program
• Guido Henkel’s Ebook Formatting Guide, formatting in HTML
• Jutoh, epub formatting software
• Inkscape, free open source vector graphics software
• Inkscape Tutorials
• Self-Publishing Basics, by David Gaughran (PDF)
• Lynda.com, online software tutorials (sub. req’d)
• Mobipocket Creator, ebook formatting software
• Paint.net
• Pinoy 7’s Graphics Tutorials
• Poser Pro, 3D character and animation software
• Pressbooks, simple book production software
• Quick and Dirty Formatting Guide, by David Dalglish
• Remove.bg, free tool to remove the background from an image, automatically
• Serif’s Free Graphics and Web Programs (i.e. PhotoPlus, DrawPlus)
• Sigil, epub editor
• Smashwords Style Guide, formatting Word docs for Smashwords
• W3 Schools HTML Tutorials
• Writers Block, word processor that locks out other applications by time or word count

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Ebook and POD Publishing

• Bitbooks, sell your books for Bitcoins
• BookStrand, ebook retailer
• Brave New Books, self-publishing affiliated with BOL.com.
    BOL (Bertelsmann OnLine) is owned by Bertelsmann, a German media company. BNB’s site is in Dutch.
• CreateSpace, POD
• Draft2Digital, ebook distribution
• DriveThruFiction, ebook retailer
• eBook Partnership, ebook distribution
• Google Play Books, ebook retailer
• Gumroad, sell direct to your audience
• IndieBookCards, book catalog for indie bookstores, self-publishers, and small presses
• iTunes Connect, Apple ebooks, Mac only
• Kindle Direct Publishing, ebook sales on Amazon
• Kobo Writing Life, ebook retailer
• Libiro, ebook retailer
• Lightning Source, POD
• Lulu, POD
• Nook Press, ebook retailer
• Payhip, sell on your site with Paypal
• Smashwords, ebook distribution
• XinXii, ebook retailer (European-based)

Note the difference here between ebook publishers and POD (print on demand) companies which publish printed books one at a time. Amazon Direct publishes to the Kindle ereader, and CreateSpace is the POD portion of Amazon Publishing. PubIt is part of Barnes and Noble, and publishes to their Nook ereader. Smashwords submits to the Apple store, Kobo, Sony, and Diesel, as well as Barnes and Noble. XinXii seems to be its own operation and doesn’t publish to specific platforms as near as I can tell.

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Fonts

• Blambot Font Archive, comic fonts and lettering
• dafont, fonts
• exljbris Font Foundry, free fonts from Jos Buivenga
• Font Bureau, fonts for fees
• Fonts 101, free TrueType fonts
• FontSpring, font licensing
• Font Squirrel, free fonts
• FontYukle, fonts
• FontZone, archive of freely downloadable fonts
• Google Fonts
• House Industries Fonts, must license through H.I.
• Identifont, font identification, with links to sources
• JTD Type Foundry, licensed fonts, limited free trials
• League of Moveable Type, open source fonts
• Lost Type Co-op
• MyFonts, fonts
• Okay Type Foundry, licensed fonts
• Planet Typography, links and references
• Scriptorium, fonts
• Set Sail Studios, hand-drawn fonts
• Typekit, fonts by Adobe
• Type Supply, licensed fonts
• Walden Font Co., historic font reproductions
• WhatTheFont!, font identification

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Photos and Illustrations

• Adobe Stock, royalty-free images
• Arcangel, rights-managed and royalty free images, stock and vintage
• BigStock Photos, royalty-free
• BRWN Stock Imaging, stock photos with people of color
• CanStock Photos, royalty-free
• Cartographers Guild, map makers
• Cover-Ready Art, royalty-free photos
• Deposit Photos, royalty-free
• Dover Books, public domain art books
• Dreamstime, royalty-free, also has a free photos section
• Flickr Commons, copyright-free works from several sources, including The Library of Congress and the British Library
• Fotolia, royalty-free
• Internet Archive Book Images, images from public domain books
• iStockphoto, royalty-free
• Karen’s Whimsy, public domain images
• List of 100 Stock Photo Sites, with details and ranks, by Scarlett Rugers
• MorgueFile, public domain
• Mosaic Stock Photos, emphasis on diversity
• New York Public Library’s Public Domain Collection, more than 180,000 freely usable items
• Photos Public Domain, free for all uses, including commercial
• Photoshop Support, list of free photo sources
• photoXpress, royalty-free
• pond5, stock media including video, SFX
• Public Domain High Resolution Images
• Reusable Art, public domain
• Shutterstock, royalty-free
• State Library Victoria, copyright-free digital image pool
• Stock Free Images, free stock photos
• Stock Fresh, royalty-free
• Stocksy United, royalty-free
• stock.xchang, free stock photos, now owned by Getty
• The Stock Alchemist, young, diverse models
• Veer, images and fonts
• Wellcome Images, historical images, many public domain
• Wikimedia Commons, public domain

Please note: Public domain sites offer images that are freely usable by anyone. All works created prior to 1923 can be considered “public domain”, and some artists offer their work as public domain regardless of the time of creation. Royalty-free sites offer images for one-time payment with no further royalties due. Usage rights will vary by site, so check carefully that you have the rights for the kind of uses you want (i.e., distribution, cropping, image manipulation are all separate rights).

Sites like Flickr or Photobucket where people post their personal photos are not generally places to look for photos you can use in your own work. Some photos on these sites may be available for commercial use, but most are not. Always check the copyright information for any art you use.

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Random for Writers

• Amazon Royalties Estimator, by Wordpreneur and Will Bontrager.
• American Heritage Dictionary, online edition
• BookTrakr, gathers your sales data and charts it, requires account info.
• Bree Bridges Downloads, word count and project trackers, sales spreadsheets, to do list, and more
• Chicago Manual of Style Online, subscription required
• Collabant, find your perfect writing partner
• Conlang Wikia, constructed language wiki
• Copyright terms and public domain in the U.S., from Cornell University
• Critique Circle, share your work and help other writers
• Duotrope, fiction markets database (sub. req’d.)
• eBookTracker, tracks Kindle rankings over time
• E-junkie, sell your work online
• Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, authors, history, themes, covers, everything about the field in one searchable database
• ErrNet, proofreading software
• Fantasy Novel Name Generator
• Free Online Barcode Generator
• Free Open Source Barcode Software, in Python
• Ganxy, online book showcase
• Gordian Plot, plot wiki
• Got Print, business cards and other marketing materials
• Hello Poetry, share your poetry
• Historical Thesaurus of English, when words were first used
• iTunes Book Charts, sales ranks
• Kindle Spy, for-pay software, analyzes Kindle ranks and sales
• Libre Office, free office suite
• Listverse, top 10 lists of all sorts
• MacinCloud, rent-a-Mac
• Mail Chimp, email list manager
• Medieval Fantasy City Generator
• Merriam-Webster Dictionary and Thesaurus
• Metaphor Database, U of VA.
• Multilingual Folk Tale Database, includes Aarne-Thompson-Uther Classifications.
• Nameberry, name generator
• Name Generator, character details by ethnicity and country
• Natural Reader, text-to-speech software
• The Next Big Writer, writing critiques, sub. req.
• Non-Englilsh Markets for Speculative Short Fiction, by Douglas Smith
• Novelists, Inc., organization for multi-published writers
• Novel Rank, Amazon ranking auto-tracker.
• Nymbler, find-a-name app
• Oblique Strategies, nudges for creative dilemmas
• Old Maps Online, front end to many map collections
• Open Office
• Oxford English Dictionary, subscription required
• Payhip, sell your ebooks using Paypal
• Plagiarism Detection, at Wikipedia, with list of programs
• Punctuation Guide
• Purdue Online Writing Lab, writing resources and instructional materials
• Quotes About Writing, from Goodreads
• Reddit Selfpublish
• Sales Rank Express, check ranks across all Amazon outlets
• Scrivener for Mac OS
• Scrivener for Windows
• Scribophile, writers’ group
• Smashing Magazine, design and typography
• The Shared Self-Publishing Experience
• Time Traveler, by Merriam-Webster. By year, lists the first appearance of words.
• Tracker Box, sales tracking software
• TV Tropes, tricks of the trade for fiction writers
• Undercover Reporting, Deception for Journalism’s Sake: A Database
• Vulgar, constructed language software, for fee
• Wattpad, a community of readers and writers
• Women Fighters in Reasonable Armor, ladies that actually dress for dealing damage
• Write It Now, creative writing software
• Writer’s Knowledge Base, “the best writings about writing”
• The Writer’s Resource Directory
• Writer’s Resource Page
• YMLP, email list software
• yWriter5, free writing software

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Services

See also: Kindleboards Yellow Pages for Authors, huge list sorted by service. The links here have all been recommended by at least one author.

Artwork and design
Editing, Copyediting, Proofreading
Formatting
Legal
Marketing
Packages
Translation

Artwork and design
• Alan’s Art Studio, Alan Gutierrez, artist
• Alexey Aparin, illustration
• Around the Pages, book covers and web site design
• Awesome Book Covers, Damon Za
• Behance, artist portfolios
• Brolken at Deviant Art, illustration and sketches
• CCR Book Cover Design
• Chris Rallis, illustration
• Cormar Covers, premade and custom covers
• Cover Bistro, pre-made designs
• Covers by Laura, Laura Morrigan
• Craig J. Spearing, illustration
• CreativIndie Covers, Derek Murphy
• CrowdSpring, logos and graphic design, crowd-sourced
• Daniele Serra, Illustrator, cover design
• Dara England, cover design
• Deanna Dionne, cover design and illustration
• Depthcore, digital art collective
• Design Crowd, post your design projects
• DeviantArt, original art at various price points
• Dreamsprings, cover art by Marion Sipe
• eBook Cover Designs, Brandi Doane
• ebook indie covers, premade covers
• Elsa Kroese, illustrator
• Enita Meadows, cover design
• Erin Lark Designs, pre-made and custom covers
• Extended Imagery, cover design
• Flip City Covers, cover art
• Freelance Ganey, cover art and illustration
• Gene Mollica, full service digital art studio
• Genkis, illustrateur, webdesigner et infographiste
• Go Bold Design, Cory Clubb
• Go On Write, cover design, pre-made and by commission
• Graphicz X Designs, cover art and designs
• Heather Theurer, fine art
• Hot Damn Design, graphic design and photography
• Igor Kieryluk, graphic design
• Indie Designz, covers and print design
• Indigo Chick Design, custom and pre-made
• Jason Gurley, custom and pre-made covers
• Jeff Brown Graphics, illustrations and concept art
• Jenn LeBlanc, illustrated romance
• Jeroen Ten Berge, illustration, design, branding
• Jes Richardson Design, cover art
• J Simmons Illustration, cover design
• JT Lindroos, cover design and illustration
• Julie Dillon Art, fantasy illustration
• Kanaxa Design, pre-made and custom covers, ebooks and print
• Keith Draws, illustration and design
• Killer Covers, covers, web site design. Mostly non-fiction.
• Kit Foster Design, book covers
• Lane Brown Art, illustration and concept design
• Larry Rostant, illustration and original art
• Laura Heeks, illustrations and photography
• LFD Designs, cover design
• Littera Designs, custom and pre-made covers
• MaeI Design and Photography, graphic design
• Mark Churms, military and historical artwork
• Max M. Leon, graphic design, fine art, and illustration
• Miguel Coimbra, concept artist and illustrator
• MorJer’s Art, drawing by Jeremiah Morelli
• Morning Light Photography, Eric Stensland, fine art photography
• Novel Prevue, promotional video and cover art
• Part Zero, Chris Steininger, cover art
• Paul Davies, illustration
• Period Images, images reminiscent of the past
• Peter Ortiz, artist
• PhatPuppy Art, graphic design
• Predatory Ethics, covers for hire
• Rae Monet, Inc. Design, book covers and web site designs
• Razzle Dazzle Design, graphic design
• Realistic Art, The Art Galleries of Howard David Johnson, custom illustration
• Rebecca Swift Artwork, art services for authors
• Red Swallow Design, design and illustration
• Renu Sharma, cover art
• Robin Ludwig Design, book cover design services
• Sarah Marino, illustration
• Scarlett Rugers, book cover design
• See Janet Work, Janet Holmes, illustration and design
• Self Pub Book Covers pre-made and customizable covers, various artists
• Spider’s Soul art by Cris Ortega
• Squared Motion, the work of Daniel Johnson, illustrator
• SRB Productions, Inc., Stephen Bryant
• Standalone Complex, cover art
• Streetlight Graphics, graphic design
• Striking Book Covers, pre-made and custom
• Tara Schuler, graphic design
• TERyvisions, graphic design
• The Art of Tommy Arnold, art and illustrations
• The Book Cover Machine, pre-made covers and custom illustration
• The Red Epic, historic and fantasy illustration by Jared Blando
• Through My Eyes, digital art by Karri Klawiter
• Tiziano Baracchi, fantasy art. Gallery at Deviant Art.
• Two Frequencies, art and illustration by Mandy Roberts
• Walking Stick Books, cover art, interior design, marketing art
• Wayward Sun Studio, graphic design
• Wicked Cover Design
• Yocla Book Covers, custom and pre-made designs by Clarissa
• You’re Published, design and layout for POD

Editing, Copyediting, Proofreading
• Aeroplace Media, copyediting and proofreading
• Aidan Taylor, editor
• Anita Bartholomew, editor
• Ashley Case, light and heavy proofreading
• Ashley Davis, editor
• Daisycakes Creative, editing by Lauren Dee
• Diana Cox, novel proofreading
• e. catherine tobler, editing
• Editing by Margaret, services list at link
• Editorial Freelancers Association, with online directory
• Elizabeth Lyon, editor
• Erin Bow, editing for YA and MG writers
• Felicia Sullivan, editor
• Gregory Lynn, editor
• Have Faith Proofreading, Faith Ann Carroll, copyediting and proofreading
• Hazard Editing Services, editing and proofreading
• H. Danielle Crabtree, editor
• Hock’s Editing Services, Neal Hock, editor
• Holloway House, editing and proofreading
• Homunculus Editing Services, Derek Prior, editor
• Ink Slinger Editorial Services, Cheryl Murphy, editor
• Joshua Essoe, editor
• Karin Cox, editor
• Last Draft Editing
• Lillie’s Literary Services, editorial and related
• Malone Editorial Services
• Purity Jones, editor
• Raighne Davidson, copyediting and proofreading
• Red Adept Editing, several editors, various services
• Rhonda Edits, editorial services
• Sasha Knight, editor
•
Sharon Muha, proofreading
• Unbridled Editor, editing by Toni Rakestraw
• Victory Editing, Anne Victory. Also the home of Arkali’s Oops Detection.
• Wolfe Ross Editing
• Wordsmith Editing, Peggy Ireland, editor
• Word Webbing, editing by Annetta Ribken

Formatting
• 52 Novels, ebook formatting
• Awesome Book Layout
•
BB ebooks, print and ebook formatting
• Cyber Witch Press, formatting
• Guido Henkel, formatting
• Late Nite Books Publishing Services, POD and ebook formatting
• L.K. Campbell, ebook formatting
• Polgarus Studio, ebook and print formatting
• Word Pursuit, formatting by Jason Anderson

Legal
• David P. Vandagriff, IP contract lawyer
• Directory of Literary Lawyers, curated by Laura Resnick
• F. Robert Stein, IP, entertainment and media law
• Elaine English, IP contract lawyer

Marketing
• Amazon Product Visualizer, find your also-boughts
• AuthorBuzz, M.J. Rose
• AwesomeGang, connecting readers and writers
• BadRedhead Media, optimizing social media and Amazon
• Bewitching Book Tours, blog tours
• bknights, marketing via Fiverr
• BlogAds, paid advertising
• Book Barbarian free and low-cost ebook newsletter
• Book Basset, paid advertising for Kindle bargains
• Book Blast, advertise free and bargain books
• BookBub, advertise free and bargain books
• Book Goodies, book listings
• Booklinker, creates a link that automatically directs to any Amazon store around the globe
• bookpromocoop, Indie author cross-promotions
• Booksends, advertise free and bargain books
• Bookish Snob Promotions, blog tours
• BookPromotion.com, news and tools for marketing and promotion
• Book Review Broker, matches books to reviewers
• Booktastic, book deals and author spotlights
• Cards Made Easy, business cards and other printed material, UK-based
• Ebook Bargains UK, international book listings
• eBook Marketing Services, graphics, ads, web design
• eBookSoda, advertising
• Ecwid, e-commerce widgets, online stores
• Ereader News Today, advertising and promotions
• Flurries of Words, advertise your ebooks
• Freebooksy, advertise your freebies
• Frugal Freebies, advertise free books
• FSB Book Blogger Directory
• Indie Book Bargains UK
• June’s Freebies and Reviews, resources for promoting free books
• Kboards Book Discovery Promo
• Kindle Books and Tips, paid advertising for Kindle books
• Kindle Fire Department, advertising for the Kindle Fire, incl. apps
• Kobo Book Hub, promote your book to Kobo readers
• Ko-fi, tip jar for the equivalent of a cup of coffee
• KUForums Ads, advertise to UK Kindle users
• ManyBooks.net, free and discounted ebooks
• Moo, design and print custom cards, posters, etc.
• Nicolas Erik’s curated list of promotional sites
• Patreon, fans support creative work directly
• Pure Buttons, custom ad merchandise
• Rafflecopter, organize giveaways and sweepstakes
• Read Cheaply, free and discounted ebooks
• Robin Reads, best bargain books
• Pixel of Ink, free and bargain Kindle books
• Project Wonderful, paid advertising
• SciFiFantasyFreak, free, discounted, new release publicity
• Self-Publishing Formula, Mark Dawson’s marketing system, with both free and paid courses.
• The Blurb Doctor, MeiLin Miranda, “Let me help you fix your blurb”
• The Cheap Ebook, author advertising on the cheap
• The Fussy Librarian, matching readers and books
• The Grinder, submission tracker and market database for fiction and poetry
• The Midlist, book recommendations
• Woodall Design, web site design
• xuni, author website management

Packages
• Author EMS, author services, including Apple upload
• Blue Valley Author Services, covers and formatting
• BookBaby, flat-rate ebook service
• Everything Indie, various services, also packages
• Lucky Bat Books, various fee-based services
• ODesk, outsource to freelancers
• Reedsy, bundled publishing services, also serves as distributor

Translation
• American Translators Association, foreign language translations.
• Babelcube, co-op translation with royalty sharing
• TranslatorsCafe, directory of translators, interpreters, and translation agencies

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Writer Beware
• Absolute Write, Bewares and Recommendations Forum
• Crash Override, resources for battling online abuse
• Popehat Free Speech Resources
• Preditors and Editors, lists services with warnings and recommendations
• Writer Beware, warnings and scams, by the SFWA

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Last Update: Aug. 4, 2019

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