Ebooks – resources, tips and tools for self-publishing

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Welcome writers! Below are links to information, tools and tips to help you start self-publishing your empire of ebooks. Or your first ebook, if you are just getting started. While this is not a full list, it will point you in the right direction to start publishing. Other resources can be found under the Self-Publishing Resources tab.

Self-Publishing Ebooks – General Info
Ebook Formatting Tools

Many writers run into problems when they convert their digital writing file into an ebook format for uploading. Smashwords formatting requirements are especially strict and can be challenging for those new to the process. Some writers take time to learn all about converting their own ebooks. However, other writers outsource the task. Here are some helpful resources.

Ebook Conversion Tools
Ebook Publishing  

Below is a list of the main ebook publishing platforms. Kindle (via Amazon) is the largest and probably most popular. However, Smashwords is also popular and was developed with the help of writers. Other companies offer publishing, distribution and book creation services.

Ebook Cover design

People do judge a book by its cover. You don’t want to end up on a ‘bad covers’ list. No doubt you spent much time, thought and energy getting your book to be the best it can be. Perhaps you scrutinized every sentence. Hopefully, you hired a professional editor. Now your creation is ready to be released to the world. So it makes sense that after all that careful attention, you also take care with the quality of your cover. Don’t rush and get something sub-standard. Don’t throw something together on your own (unless you have proven design skills). Make sure you get professional design help. And be willing to take advice from the designer. Avoid getting stuck on the first idea you have for a cover.

Find a graphic designer. Another option is using an inexpensive pre-made ebook cover. However, there’s a risk you will find a similar design on other books. If you do use a pre-made cover, ensure you have it customized for your book. A talented BC designer with a lot of ebook cover experience is Michelle Fairbanks of Fresh Design.  In addition, Ana Charbrand offers book cover services in Vancouver, BC

Here are a couple of links with ebook design tips.

Making 3D-Effect covers

If you sell a digital book from your website (e.g. PDF booklets), you may want to use a 3D-effect illustration. For example, this online business uses 3D covers for all their products. If you only need a few designs, you might be able to do them yourself. However, if you need many, it may be worth it to purchase software.

3D digital book cover tools & tips:

 Sales tracking tools
Ebook News

New resources are always being developed and old services are always changing. Therefore it’s recommended to stay up-to-date with ebook news. Here are a few blogs worth following.

Find more self-publishing resources here.

Find any of these resources helpful? Any ideas for a resource that should be listed? Please send an email.

Note: Links and information are for research purposes and do not replace professional advice. Accuracy of third-party websites cannot be verified. Links do not indicate endorsement. 

Updated January 2021