Man standing on bookUnless you just started writing yesterday, you’ve probably heard a lot about—and been curious about—self-publishing. Luckily, there are tons of resources at your fingertips that will help you identify the basics (and even decide if it might be for you).

Here’s a list of some of the best online resources about self-publishing. Because the market is always changing and because demand is exponentially increasing, this is not an exhaustive list, but it should give you a decent start.

General Resources

  • www.fonerbooks.com/paper.htm—A comprehensive self-publisher’s primer.
  • www.thebookdesigner.com/—Practical advice for self-publishers.
  • www.selfpublishingreview.com—An information-packed resource.
  • www.thebookishdilettante.com/blog/2009/1/19/the-double-edged-sword-of-self-publishing-and-other-mixed-me.html—An incisive blog post on some of the misconceptions that lead to self-publishing disappointment and what self-published authors need to do to succeed.
  • www.pbs.org/mediashift/2010/03/the-pitfalls-of-using-self-publishing-book-packages084/—Publishing consultant Carla King discusses true self-publishing versus using a publishing service.
  • www.writing-world.com/publish/POD.shtml—How to determine if self-publishing is right for you.
  • http://reviews.cnet.com/self-publishing—Author David Carnoy takes a balanced look at the benefits and challenges of POD self-publishing.
  • www.writing-world.com/publish/lick.shtml—Ten questions to ask before you sign a POD contract.

LaptopElectronic Self-Publishing

  • http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/—A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing reports on issues of interest to self-publishers.
  • http://thewritersguidetoepublishing.com—The Writer’s Guide to E-Publishing offers tips, resources, sales numbers, and news for electronic self-publishers. Check the large array of articles, especially Jane Friedman’s “10 Questions to Ask Before Committing to Any Epublishing Service.” Author David Carnoy also lists a roundup of electronic self-publishing options.
  • www.pbs.org/mediashift/2011/09/how-to-self-publish-your-e-book259—Publishing consultant Carla King gives an overview of several popular epublishing services.
  • www.digitalbookworld.com/2001/indesign-to-ebook-resources/—Designer Colleen Cunningham offers a ton of resources to help you format and design your self-published ebook.

Blowing letters from bookPrint-on-Demand (POD) Self-Publishing

  • www.booksandtales.com/pod—Clea Saal’s Books and Tales website provides comparisons of a number of POD services as well as a series of articles on the stages of POD self-publication.
  • http://dehanna.com/database.html—Side-by-side comparisons of a number of POD services.
  • www.theindependentpublishingmagazine.com/—Detailed reviews of many POD services.
  • www.hipiers.com/publishing.html—Successful novelist Piers Anthony maintains an Internet publishing resource that lists and describes electronic and POD-based publishers and flags those that have problems or are the focus of complaints.
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.—SFWA has assembled a large archive of documentation on publishers that engage in questionable practices. Send an email listing the names of any POD services you’d like to know about, and they’ll summarize any data in their files.
  • http://pred-ed.com—Preditors and Editors provides lists of agents and publishers, with “not recommended” notations to indicate those that charge fees or engage in other abuses.
  • http://absolutewrite.com/forums/index.php—Research the reputation of POC services on the Beware and Background Check area of the Absolute Writer Water Cooler. You can check the index to see if the service you’re interested in has been discussed.

(Photos: top, Fotolia; bottom, leslieballeweg.com)

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