5 Best Self-Publishing Services and Sites

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Small Business Expert

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Want to make a little extra pocket change? The Internet can help—and no, making money over the ‘net doesn’t mean stuffing envelopes or selling diet pills. Instead, you can use online services to produce and distribute books, crafts, games, and other cool items made with your own hot little hands. Before you make plans on how to spend all that sweet money, though, you should make yourself aware of the best self-publishing sites and services. 

Most services specialize in one field, or a small handful. It’s important to find one that suits both your needs and your budget. Here are five suggestions for good self-publishing services and sites. 

Lulu – Lulu is one of the Internet’s most popular go-to sites for authors that would like to do things themselves. You retain all the rights to your work, which can then be sold through popular online outlets like Barnes and Noble and Amazon.com. Lulu also has a wide range of print options, including paperback, hardback, glossy, color, or black and white. 

Kickstarter – Kickstarter is fast becoming an extremely important site for individuals looking to fund niche projects via crowdsourcing. The person who is looking for funding pitches their project on the Kickstarter site in hopes of attracting enough donors. If the target amount is reached, the project is funded (the donors’ credit cards are not charged until the Kickstarter is successful), and donors are rewarded for their contributions. Kickstarter is used to fund all kinds of creative projects, including independent video games, books, albums, and documentaries. 

Smashwords – If you’re looking to self-publish a book, it’s not a bad idea to start off with an ebook. Ebooks are much cheaper than self-published hardcopies, which makes people far less reluctant to take a risk on them. Smashwords lets you publish your stories on-line and then distribute them at a price you set yourself. 

Etsy – Etsy is a crafting/supply site. It’s typically the go-to option for ladies and gentlemen who are looking to sell crafts, art, jewelry, and home-made toys online. For some artists, operating an Etsy store is a full-time job that brings in a steady income. 

App HubApp Hub is a website that offers free/affordable services to indie game developers that want to publish on the Xbox 360 and/or the Windows Phone. Developers who join will gain access to free tools, sample code, community support, and more. 

Need more tips on where to find great self-publishing resources? Visit: 

How to Self-Publish Anything at Mashable

Self-Publishing a Book: 25 Things You Need to Know at CNET

Music Self-Publishing at Squidoo

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About author

Nadia Oxford

Nadia is a freelance writer living in Toronto. She played her first game at four, decided games were awesome, and has maintained her position since. She writes for 1UP.com, Slide to Play, GamePro and other publications, and is About.com's Guide to the Nintendo DS.

View all posts by Nadia Oxford

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