So the main difference between carving your path as an indie author versus working with a publisher is personal accountability. Sounds scary and overwhelming, but hear me out.
Most traditionally published authors eventually come to the shocking realization that being traditionally published includes far fewer perks than they originally thought, so a lot are left to their own devices for the majority of their book promotion, and certainly for their long-term marketing.
Suffice it to say, every author can benefit from this list of great resources I originally designed specifically for indie authors who knew what was on their plate when they started their journey.
How to Manage Your own Book Promotion
The key to making your book promotion efforts manageable is having the right resources in your arsenal.
And in turn, the right resources will often inspire you to go above and beyond your original book promotion plan.
This list of resources for indie authors is in no particular order. And if there’s a resource you use religiously that we’ve left off please, please share it in the comments below and give them some love – that’s what this is all about. I’m not doing this to kiss any rings.
I’m doing this to help introduce more readers to fantastically talented indie authors.
So if you’re one of those, no time to be humble here, please be sure to share this with your networks and bookmark it for yourself.
As you grow, your book marketing needs will grow too. And you’ll likely want to revisit a lot of these resources at different points in your career.
55 Essential Resources for Indie Authors to Bookmark Now
One of Writer’s Digest’s 101 Best Websites for Writers, Ann updates on Sundays and her blog includes regular contributions from former Big Six editor, Ruth Harris. @annerallen
This is a great list of book blogs that review books, which is something every indie author can use!
Run by Miral Sattar, BibiloCrunch is a fantastic portal to find great service providers that have been vetted by the BiblioCrunch staff. They also have a fab #indiechat every Tuesday at 4pm EST. @BiblioCrunch
Julie Isaac, the founder, offers tools, solutions, and support to thousands of writers since 2003. @WritingSpirit
Books and Such is a Literary Management Agency. They sell books to a wide range of publishers in such categories as women’s fiction, general fiction, nonfiction, gift books, easy readers, and chapter books. @JanetKGrant
Publishers Weekly’s site is dedicated to indie authors. They have success stories, author profiles, how-tos, news and more, all to help indie authors achieve their goals. @booklife
John Kremer is a long-time self-publishing proponent and knows his stuff. He is the author of 1001 Ways To Market Your Book and shares good insight on his blog and in his book! @JohnKremer
With Betty Sargent, at the helm (who has a very impressive publishing resume), it’s the new go-to for all thing traditionally and self-published. The blog is fantastic, with a hard-working team cranking the best and most helpful information on self-publishing. @BookWorksNYC
Sandra Beckwith has more than 25 years of experience as a publicist. She shares tips and writes on currently relevant topics for authors. Build Book Buzz was awarded a “Top Website for Self-Publishers” by The Alliance of Independent Authors. @sandrabeckwith
Catherine writes from Ireland and talks a lot about self-publishing. Her posts are fun and informative. @cathryanhoward
Your storytelling needs to go beyond the cover of your book. So you need great online content, at the heart of which is powerful writing. The free info on their blog will help you start mastering content marketing. And then, you can use it to expand your author following. @copyblogger
David Gaughran focuses on how to get visible and sell more books. He is the author of several books on these topics and shares tons of info about self-publishing. @DavidGaughran
Dubbed the Queen of Visibility, Denise really gets it. She shares some amazingly insightful information on her blog, and via her Social Media to help you gain more readers, followers and sales. @DeniseWakeman
One of modern fiction’s of most prolific writers, USA Today bestselling writer, Dean Wesley Smith is the author of more than a hundred novels (in forty years!). Check out Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing. @DeanWesleySmith
Frances Caballo is a self-professed social media genie and I agree with her! Her blog is a fantastic resource for not just social media, but also marketing trends in general, with a dedicated Indie Author Weekly Update. @CaballoFrances
Girl Friday has a diverse team. Their number includes a writer, expert, agent, and self-publisher. And more. They share insights on their blog and podcast. And they offer various services to craft and produce your stories. @GirlFridayProd
Jeff Goins, blogging since 2010, answers a few burning questions. They include: How do successful writers make a living? What does it really take to get published? And, how do you pursue a passion? He shares tips on writing, creativity, and making a difference. @JeffGoins
Good e-Reader is the leading online news source for eBooks, e-Readers and Digital Publishing. They publish over 80 news items every week, covering the entire industry. @goodereader
I always encourage writers to utilize Goodreads. But did you know that they have a blog dedicated to Authors and Advertisers? Well, they do – and it’s good to read! It’s packed with tips and good advice. @goodreads
K.M. Weiland mentors authors through her blog, one of Writer’s Digest’s 101 Best Websites for Writers. @kmweiland
Chandler Bolt is a bestselling author in his own right. And he is taking what’s made him successful and offering it in a way that makes it easy for others to follow in his same path. He has a blog, a podcast, even a webinar to help you finish that book! @self_pub_school
Everything about indie authors, books and the independent book scene all in one spot. Solid online venue for discriminating book-lovers to find and purchase books published by the people who wrote them. @indiereader
Mark Dawson has a podcast where he tackles a lot of really important and helpful topics for indie authors. And with a lot of great guests as well. Definitely worth your time. And with all the written resources out there, it’s refreshing to be have the option to learn on the go! @SelfPubForm
Jane Friedman is the former publisher of Writer’s Digest. She specializes in educating writers about the publishing industry—from all perspectives, without hype or bias. The Alliance of Independent Authors has awarded her a “Top Website for Self-Publishers.” @JaneFriedman
Jody offers advice, encouragement, and inspiration based on all her knowledge of writing, publication, and marketing in today’s tough publishing industry. @jodyhedlund
Dave Chesson, founder of Kindlepreneur, is a digital marketing nut. He’s also an authority on self-publishing and a multi best-selling author. And, he shares the hows, whys, and whens of online marketing. @davechesson
Owner Eric Z focuses a lot on pre-publication issues a lot of authors face, like formatting, and provides templates you can use. His main goal is to help you get your book ready for sale for free. And it’s no easy feat. But he’s dedicated to walking you through it, if you’re willing to learn. @erocz
Louise Myers talks all about the power of social media graphics. And she offers tips on how you can make your presence more visually appealing. @Louise_Myers
Formerly the Future of Ink, Magnolia Media Network offers content to help authors navigate their marketing choices. Nancy Camden and Dr. Ellen Britt share expert interviews, tools, and great articles. Don’t miss this one! @magnolianet
Sarah Bolme offers guidance on marketing to the Christian market.
Author Bridget McNulty provides a structured method to help you finish your novel. Get consistent motivation with tons of tips on the blog, helpful mentorship, and join an online community of writers. @bridgetmcnulty
I got to know Peg through her work with Guy Kawasaki. A social media goddess, I really love her mega-creative, super insightful posts. If you want to stay current on all things social media, and get some great ideas in the process, Peg is your gal. @PegFitzpatrick
Peggy DeKay, award-winning author of Self Publishing for Virgins, runs The Business of Writing Today. Scope out her blog, resources, and podcasts. @peggydekay
Joan is the Publicity Hound and she is as tenacious as the name suggests. Joan is my go-to for all things marketing. She has fantastic resources on her website, great webinars and shares a ton of helpful marketing insight via Twitter. @PublicityHound
This is a beast of a site with so much content they even refer to themselves as the “nuclear powered Death Star of a blog.” And it’s totally worth your time. They have a ton of great content. And, they also offer writing challenges, social media promos, and a newsletter. Plus, even a place to promote your eBook for free. @IndiesUnlimited
Johnny, Sean and Dave will speak to you. Literally. And they offer interactive and helpful advice. @sterling_stone
Mary Jaksch, Chief Editor, believes your writing practice needs a positive direction. Write to Done helps you learn new skills, practice them, and become a better writer. @WritetoDone
Cathy Stucker shares useful tips and techniques for writing, publishing and selling books. And she has free downloads available to help authors build their platform. @CathyStucker
Mark Coker,Founder of Smashwords, is the voice of the independent author. He works tirelessly to give authors the best possible experience on his site. And he often releases real-time stats on book publishing that are mind-blowing. He’s also a great speaker – I always love his sessions. @markcoker
Frances Caballo shares tips and suggestions for using social media to your advantage to market your work. @CaballoFrances
Joel Friedlander aka The Book Designer has countless articles (organized into easy to navigate topics) on his site that help self-published authors with every thing you need to know, and do. @JFbookman
The Creative Penn is packed with information and resources. The best way to navigate through it all is to click on the “Start here!” link. @thecreativepenn
Mick Rooney’s site and magazine offers in-depth reviews of just about every publishing service out there. Check out his reviews, resources, and loads of info on indie publishing. @theindiepubmag
Shelley and Heather of Training Authors have a goal to help authors achieve book marketing success. Their site is full of resources and free downloads. @trainingauthors
Wise Ink is an online community created to help passionate authors through the hurdles of publishing. The two editors, Dara Beevas and Amy Quale, both work for an indie publisher in the Twin Cities. @Wiseink
Nina Amir, the Inspiration-to-Creation Coach, motivates nonfiction writers, entrepreneurs, and even non-writers build a businesses around your books and writing. @NinaAmir
These guys literally “wrote the book” on writing and getting published. The experts at Writer’s Digest, for 90+ years, publish books, magazines, competitions, conferences and distance education materials for writers who want to polish their skills and hone their craft. @WritersDigest
Writer Unboxed has articles from a ton of contributors that all offer advice and food for thought on the craft and business of writing fiction. @WriterUnboxed
Blogs can be a scary concept, but honestly they’re a really fantastic tool and a great way to support your other efforts because it gives you one more channel to promote your releases, your discounts, special giveaways, etc. and it helps to increase your online footprint in measurable ways – basically, it helps you get discovered. Rob Mening has really nailed it with this piece on how to start a blog, I promise it isn’t scary, no more excuses. @robmening
Make A Website Hub is a great resource for writers interested in creating their own website. Their extensive guides and resources can help you set up a site to market your works or simply create a blog for experimentation and creative writing. @makeawebsitehub
Sanebox is basically an email filter on steroids. I use it to keep my inbox clean by forwarding messages to my future self. Instead of jotting it on a list, I can forward the email with a specific date and it’ll pop back into my inbox at that time. It’s a must-have for staying productive and not letting genius ideas and opportunities fall by the wayside. @sanebox
I love ALLI because of their vetting process (all vendors are vetted) and their book promotion information. They’ve got a great newsletter and blog, jam-packed with lots of great information for authors. Including case studies, surveys, and a fantastic podcast! @IndieAuthorALLI
If you’re looking to enhance your graphics game this year, look no farther than Canva. First off, if you’re not doing graphics with each of your blog posts or social media updates you should. Graphics really help to enhance your overall book promotion game, too. There’s a free version of Canva and a paid one, too. @Canva
Okay we had to put ourselves on here. After all, there may be some of you reading this from a share. We try very hard to focus our blog on easily actionable tips that can help your success TODAY. And they are accessible to pretty much any author out there, from the well-established to the newbie. We feature a strong focus on Amazon too so we can be your go-to for keeping up with the retail giant! @Bookgal
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The better we all are as authors and marketers, the better book publishing gets!
Please get in touch if you ever want to chat about a collaboration, or do some one-on-one coaching to develop a solid plan of action.
And don’t forget to download our free resources below!
Resources and Free Downloads
Download our Monthly Book Marketing Planner to ensure you never let your exposure slip through the cracks, no matter how busy you get writing, editing, or just managing life!
I did a mini-workshop at a writers conference recently using our Reader Profile Brainstorm and the attendees were amazed at how much they learned about their readers and how that changes their approach to marketing and which book promotion strategies they should be using.
Our Quarterly Amazon Planner is really essentially for ensuring you stay on top of genre, lifestyle and buyer trends that affect how shoppers are using Amazon, and how well they’re able to find your book. This sounds like a big undertaking but once you learn the skills, you’ll reap the rewards. Use the planner to keep yourself accountable and if you’re not sure on the strategies, contact us and we’ll help you out with a discount code to a video series with all the instructions you need.