Self-Publishing Companies in Victoria BC (& beyond)

bookshelves with text self-publishing companies in Victoria BC and beyond
Welcome writers! Here you will find a list of self-publishing companies with a focus on those located in Victoria, BC. Also listed are resources for print-on-demand, ebooks, and hybrid publishing. If you are interested in self-publishing for children and youth, resources in Victoria and Vancouver are also included.
Self-Publishing – Two Paths
Before deciding on what company to use to self-publish your book, you need to decide how many tasks you wish to manage. You can be very hands-on, or you can have one company handle everything.
Hands-On (Path 1): If you are comfortable managing your book publishing project, this path might be best. This means you hire professionals for specific tasks (e.g. editing, cover design) that you are unable or unwilling to do yourself. This path may take more skill and attention but it is becoming a popular option. This is because many writers feel they want to have full control over the quality of each task. It is much easier to be in full control of your book projects if you are only publishing ebooks. However, it is still best to out-source some tasks such as proofreading and ebook covers. It is wise that you don’t try to do all tasks yourself. To find writing professionals, see Pro Help.
Package-Deal (Path 2): If you are not comfortable with fully managing your project, then a package-deal might be the better option. This means you purchase all self-publishing services from one company. Keep in mind this route may be more costly. On the plus-side, it may save you time and attention as you will not have to juggle many separate tasks. However, it is important to do your research, learn about other writers’ experiences, be very careful about your contract, ensure you purchase quality work, don’t over-pay, and make sure you avoid scams.

If you are not sure which is the best path, check with other writers or writing professionals. You can also learn about differences in quality in this helpful article by a self-published author who has tried several different companies. 

Self-Publishing Companies – Victoria BC
Printorium Bookworks – a part of Island Blue Print.
First Choice Books – a part of Victoria Bindary.
Friesen Press – a part of Friesens Corporation (founded 1923).
TellWell – a new company in Victoria.
Promontory Press – a small company in North Saanich.
Espresso Book Machine – a book printing and binding machine at UVIC.
Agio Publishing – a boutique service in Victoria.
Art Ink Print – a fine art printing and design company.

Self-Publishing for Children & Youth (non-profit)
StoryStudio.com is a nonprofit that helps children and youth write and publish their own stories. In addition, they provide free programs in schools. 
Creative Writing for Children is a non-profit that also helps children write and publish. Located in Vancouver, BC. 
Writers’ Exchange is a nonprofit using volunteers to help children create literacy projects. Located in Vancouver, BC.


Canadian Printing Companies (for print books)

Friesens.com (Winnipeg)
Art Book Bindery (Winnipeg)
Houghton Boston Printers (Saskatoon)
Hignell Book Printing  (Winnipeg)
International Web Express (Vancouver) for newspapers, magazines, and more.


Print-On-Demand (POD) 

What is Print-On-Demand (POD)? It is a way to print books just few at a time, as needed. POD was invented when digital printing was invented. Previously, because of the high cost of setting up a regular printing press, it only made financial sense to print large numbers of books. And for writers self-publishing, this meant a big up-front  cost and boxes of books filling their basement or garage. All this changed with digital printing. Books could be printed in small numbers as orders came in. You could argue that many trees were saved with the invention of digital printing, since large numbers of unsold books no longer went to waste. However, now there are many more people printing smaller numbers of books. One of the pioneers of POD was right here in Victoria: Bruce Batchelor, former CEO of Trafford Books, who now runs Agio Publishing House.

More print-on-demand companies

CreateSpace – for softcover books (part of Amazon).
Lulu.com – for softcover & hardcover books & ebooks.
Blurb.com – for high-quality art books.
Picaboo.com – for photebooks.
Peecho.com – for books, magazines, art posters, canvases (framed & unframed).
StoryTreasures.com – for students’ books.
StoryJumper.com – for children’s books.

There are many, many more self-publishing companies. Check the charts and reviews listed below if you want to see how they compare.

Publishing Service Index 2016 (TIPM)
Chart of Print-On-Demand companies
Review of Print-On-Demand companies

It is also important to read reviews of one particular large self-publishing company that owns many smaller companies. This article describes some problems authors have had. More self-publishing problems with this company can be found in the comments here.

When exploring self-publishing options, you may come across the term “hybrid publishing“. A short definition is that hybrid publishing is part traditional publisher and part self-publishing company. As in traditional publishing, there may be a submission process. And as in self-publishing, the author will help pay for publishing costs. Here is another helpful article about Hybrid Publishing.

Go to this page if you want to learn about Ebook Resources

Again: it is very important to learn how to avoid publishing scams.

Want to keep up-to-date? Learn about Self-Publishing Trends (2016) here.

Did you find any of the resources listed especially helpful? Do you have an idea 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.