If you’re just getting started with self-publishing, the amount of resources out there can be overwhelming. Google “How to self-publish,” and you’ll get thousands of results. But, which ones are really useful?
I’ve been researching self-publishing like mad for the past several months, in preparation for the upcoming launch of my first self-published books. Here are four (free!) resources that have become my “go to” places whenever I have a question or just want to hear more from other self-published authors:
- Rocking Self-Publishing Podcast: Each week, Simon Whistler, the host of the Rocking Self-Publishing podcast, interviews a successful self-published author about how they “made it.” The interviews are long (about an hour) and super informative – people seem to spill secrets a little more easily when they’re chatting in an interview. One thing I’ve found particularly inspirational about this podcast is how many authors started from nothing or close to nothing – one guy went from living on people’s couches to living off of his writing in 8 months!
- r/eroticauthors: Don’t let the title of this subreddit scare you off! I do not write erotica; in fact, the major stuff I’m working on right now is mostly non-fiction. Nonetheless, these folks know their stuff. This subreddit is chalk full of helpful tips on everything from marketing to design to, of course, writing. While it is geared toward the erotica and, to a lesser extent, romance genres, much of the information is easily adaptable to other genres.
- Kindlepreneur: Created by successful self-published author Dave Chesson, this site is filled with marketing gold. As the title indicates, he focuses a lot on self-publishing through Amazon (maker of the Kindle), which is by far the biggest market out there. At last check, he was earning close to $10,000 a month from self-publishing, so he’s worth checking out. Bonus: he was featured on episode 159 of the Rocking Self-Publishing Podcast!
- Blake Snyder’s Save The Cat! Beat Sheets Page: For those who write genre fiction, this collection of “beat sheets” is indispensable. If you haven’t heard of a beat sheet before, it’s basically a story outline showing all of the major plot points, or “beats” that a story should hit and in what order. Since Snyder’s page is for screenwriters, he’s created beat sheets for a bunch of different movies, showing how they fit into traditional story-telling structure. The concepts are essentially the same as for genre fiction, so this is a great way to quickly analyze plot structure and figure out the main scenes you need to include in your story to meet reader expectations.
These are just four of the many great free resources out there for those trying to get a start in self-publishing. Go ahead and recommend others in the comments!