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My Top 10 Favorite Resources for Authors
- Dropbox – I think Dropbox is a must have for any author. It backs up your files in a cloud that you can access from any computer. You can share folders with co-authors, cover designers, editors, and more. I simply LOVE it and would be lost with out it. It takes the need for e-mailing files back and forth out of the equation, allows you to work on your book/project from any computer (or device) and best of all, it’s free.
- SmartURL – This is a free tool I use for re-directing Amazon links to the correct countries. You can find out more about it in this post I wrote for TrainingAuthors.com.
- Site Ground – I used to use Bluehost to host all of my websites. I love how affordable it was, and how easy it was to navigate, however, I started having issues with downtime, so I decided to switch. Site Ground has a similar pricing plan, and is much more reliable.
- Benchmark Email – As much as I loathe email, I think it is one of the most powerful tools available to authors. Every author should have a list. I personally use TrafficWave as my main email list management service, it makes having a list affordable and easy to manage. One of the things I love about TrafficWave is that the price never goes up, no matter how many lists or subscribers you have. I have been using TrafficWave for years, and since I signed up some other great alternatives have become available. So, if you are just starting out, I highly recommend Benchmark. They offer a free package and some awesome landing pages, email templates, etc. that far surpass the quality of those TrafficWave offers at this time. TrafficWave has been beefing up their service, but I would still recommend Benchmark for new lists.
- LastPass – I LOVE LastPass. It keeps me sane by managing all my logins, passwords and also allows me to give access to specific accounts to outsourcers without giving them my password. Plus, I can access it on any computer and on my phone. There is a free and paid version, both are awesome. You can watch my LastPass tutorial here (just know LastPass has updated the sign up process since it was created).
- Microsoft Office (Word, PPT, Excel) – Obviously, every author needs a word processor. I personally love Microsoft Word. Openoffice.org has a similar software available for free, and I have used it in the past, but I simply love Microsoft Office and use it for all of my books, spreadsheets, and presentations.
- Adobe Stock – AdobeStock is a subscription service for royalty free photos. You get 10, print quality graphics every month with your subscription, and it is where I get all most all of my photos. I use graphics for my books, on my website/blog, and for social media, etc. Having quality images can make or break your success. So this is extremely important. I also get some royalty free images from Pixabay.
- Photoshop – I use Photoshop for designing everything from blog images to book covers. I have tried the free software that is out there to do these things, and I just love how fluid Photoshop is. It is an investment, but it is my favorite graphic editing tool, and I really think it’s worth it. It will save you a ton of time and headaches. If you can’t invest in it, Canva is a great free alternative, but it doesn’t hold a candle to Photoshop. I also use eCover Authority to turn my book covers into 3D images.
- Evernote – I use Evernote for managing my to do list. It keeps me organized and I love that I can add to it from my phone or my computer. And best of all, it’s free.
- Scribens – Scribens is a free online tool you can use to check your grammar. You copy and paste your text into onto their website, and it will check for a whole host of issues. Including run-on sentences, comma overuse, word repititions, cliches, punctuation, spelling, and so much more. I also use the Grammarly extention for checking my online writing, but I did just discover Scribens has their own, so I may check that out.
Helpful Advertising Resources
- Amazon Ads for Authors – Alana Terry has a great training on using Amazon Ads to market your book. You can watch her free tutorial and then decide if you want to invest in the whole training.
- Reader’s Favorite is one of my favorite advertising resources. You can submit your book to get a free, professional review. Or pay to enter it in their book award contest. If you want to become an award-winning author, this is one of my favorite award contests and it was the first award I won as an author.
- 15+ Places to Promote Your 99cent eBook
- 76+ Places to Submit Your Free KDP Select Promotion
- Author Publicity Pack – eBook outlining over 750 places that authors of all genres can get publicity for themselves and their books.
- Fiverr – I get some of my graphic work done on Fiverr. Need a logo? Fiverr can help. Need a cool intro for your YouTube Channel? Fiverr’s got what you need. You can get 20% off your first order when you sign up with my referral link. I will note that while you can get book covers made on Fiverr, I make my own, and I can make yours, too. Find out more about my book cover design services here.
- Author Marketing Club – The Author Marketing Club has a ton of resources for authors. Including (but not limited to) a free book submission tool, a list of paid promotion sites, book analyzers, cover creators, group promotions, review tools, description enhancers, and more.
People to Follow
- Alana Terry, who is also known as, “The Successful Christian Writer” is probably the number one person you should be following in my book. Alana is exactly what she’s known as – a successful Christian indie author. She has written over two dozen books (a combination of novels and non-fiction) and she shares what she has learned along the way with other authors. You can find out more here.
- Chandler Bolt is an entrepreneur who became a six-figure author shortly after launching his first book. You can find his books on Amazon here.
- Shelley Hitz has some great information for non-fiction authors/entrepreneurs. You can get her free video training here.
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