Here are some rocking resources we have tried out and love!
The Write Practice is a great blog that gives mini-lessons and opportunities to practice grammar, story and character development and pretty much any and all things that will help you become a better writer.
Crafting Novels & Short Stories is a compilation from the Editors of Writer's Digest and has a wealth of information on planning your work, story structure, character development, setting, description, point of view, characters and the ever so scary topic, revision.
Dictionary.com is super-handy when you don't feel like lugging out a book.
Revision & Self-Editing by James Scott Bell: This book is really helpful. It has lots of great tips, ideas, prompts and finishes with the most complete checklist I have ever found. Leti has used that book to create her own massive, all encompassing Chapter & Scene Chat, Novel Checklist. and Character Info Chart. Click on the links to view Google Docs you can print and use.
Goodreads has a message board to advertise for beta readers.
The Writer's Beat hosts a Novel Exchange to swap beta reads.
Critters Writers Workshop provides a platform to get your writing critiqued.
Scribophile is an online writing group to share critiques.
World Literary Cafe hosts a Beta Readers & Critique group.
Grammar Girl has quick and informative answers on any and all possible grammar topics.
Grammarly is a site you can use to run a grammar check on your text. You can try it for free and then packages are priced from around $20 a month.
Auto Crit Editing Wizard is a great site to check grammar and check for over used words, sentence variation, redundancies, cliches, repeated words and much more. You can try it for free but yearly subscriptions start at about $50.
ProWritingAid is another online editor and writing coach. It offers 19 different reports for free and the premium version cost only $35 for a year.
Let's Get Digital: How to Self-Publish, And Why You Should by David Gaughran: I've read lots of book on how to self-publish, this was by far the most complete and helpful. It walks you through how to format, upload and even gives some great marketing tips.
When it comes to formatting, Guido Henkel's guide is the last word. It is so easy to use and holds your hand for each step of the process. This is a must for uploading to Amazon for Kindle and Barnes & Nobel for Nook. This is free to use.
The Smashwords Style Guide helps you clean up your manuscript so that you can upload it to Smashwords. You want to do this since they distribute to everyone, including Apple. This book is free!
Karly Kirkpatrick is an indie author who has a wonderful blog and if you check out her Adventures in EPublishing tab, she has lots of great advice, tips and insight.
Deana Zhollis has compiled her Steps in E-Publishing along with her costs. It is a slightly different path than mine but still very useful information.
A Newbies Guide to Publishing is written by Joe Konrath, one of the most successful self-published authors out there. His blog has lots of good ideas and insights like this piece on How to Sell Ebooks.
Coalition of Independent Authors is a great site to list your book and offers a variety of author services including free and affordable advertising options
The Indie Author's Guide To The Universe by Jeff Bennington is an excellent resource for anyone just starting out or those of us who already have our feet wet in this business. Although it gives an overview of e-publishing, it has some helpful and informative marketing ideas.
A Blue Million Books has a ridiculously comprehensive list of marketing sites to try for book promotion that has been put together by Amy Metz.
Carmen Stefanescu has put together a rather impressive list on where to find free book reviewers.
Check out Bargin eBooks for a place to list your books priced under $5. It only lists one book per day so it is a nice bit of exposure. Just plan ahead.
Freado is a site where you can post a free excerpt of your book, or even full works if you wish. They have paid advertising options, but the free option is worth it just for the BookBuzzr widget, if nothing else.
Tools:Inkscape is a free vector graphics program you can use to build book covers and graphics for your website. (Free.)
You can write novels using yWriter novel writing software. (Free.)
3DPackage Online can be used to render 3D book images. (Free.)