Here is a list of tools and resources to help you self-publish.
Smash words takes Word files and sends them out to each of the eBook formats and markets. Make sure you follow their tutorials on formatting as any deviation messes up the final file. I recommend using this for all text books as it has the most issues with images. Also, they take a piece of your royalties for their service but they are also the only platform that gives you free voucher coupons (for reviews.)
Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on “Independently publish with us” to access the Kindle control panel. Also don’t forget to join the affiliate program so you can get a little bit of extra money from promoting Amazon links. If you need help, virtually every topic is addressed on their searchable message boards.
Excellent way to promote your work and connect with readers. Goodreads allows physical giveaways of your books which is an excellent promotional tool. Read and review books to gain credibility and make sure all of your books get listed on the service. Goodreads interfaces with Amazon, so what’s there will show up here (most of the time.) You can also recommend your books to readers that have reviewed books similar to your own. I recommend getting into this service even if you’re pre-published.
Amazon’s physical print on demand service. This is excellent for softcover books, particularly YA and chapter books. Copies are relatively cheap going for as little as $2 and you only pay for what you order. You can also purchase ISBN numbers for your books and your titles automatically appear on Amazon. They also have a convert to Kindle service though I have never used it.
An alternative print on demand service. Lulu offers higher royalty rates and is cheaper to produce large, heavily illustrated, books. They also offer small scale hardcover books at an affordable price. Lulu is awesome for one off prints or special edition books (I made a Christmas compilation through them two years ago as a gift for my family.)
This is a new kid in town that specializes in board books and hardcover picture books. They are not print on demand, so you have to order in batches, but they are much cheaper than US alternatives and much easier to deal with than Chinese presses. A typical hardcover book will run you $8, so a great price point for the typical $16 sales price. You will have to setup a personal store on Amazon to sell there but that is easy. You could also setup fulfillment by Amazon and ship copies to their warehouse.
WordPress is a blog platform that you deploy onto servers to create a webpage. The code is versatile and there are many themes to customize the look of your site.WordPress.com offers blogs for sale with custom names if you don’t want to setup the site yourself. Once you have a WordPress blog, you can easily post regular content to promote your work. I highly recommend starting a blog even if you are doing traditional publishing.
Fantastic resources and networking here. This article:http://www.digitalpubbing.com/7-strategies-and-94-tools-to-help-indie-authors-find-readers-and-reviewers/#1BookLikes is literally the greatest resource for promotion that I have come across online. Once you have published something, click this link and try everything you can. It’s awesome!
Excellent resources and tutorials for self publishing. They also have a list of self-publishing awards you can submit to here: http://www.thebookdesigner.com/book-awards/
The Four Hour Work Week
Tim Ferris’s blog on passive income and other entrepreneur ventures. Guests regularly discuss selling books, starting Kickstarters, and growing email lists. If you self-publish you are basically running your own small business, so blogs like this are valuable.
Buffer is a que app for Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. It even has suggested content that you can use for free! Buffer allows you to schedule posts in advance so you can get all of your social media done without doing it constantly. There is a limited free version and a fantastic paid version (once you grow to where you need it.) Hootsuite is another scheduling platform that targets posts for specific high traffic times. Both are excellent.