Below are links to book design resources that we’ve found very helpful. We hope they’ll come in handy for you while you’re designing your book!
These book design resources provide useful information, and many include blogs and newsletters you can subscribe to. This list is a work in progress, and new resources are added whenever we discover them.
- bar codes
- book printers
- CIP data
- design inspiration
- digital files (transfer and storage)
- ebook conversion
- images (stock photography)
- InDesign (tips, tutorials, and plug-ins)
- typesetting and typography
- websites for authors
Book design resourcesThis list of #bookdesign resources includes links to everything you need to design and #publish your #book, including where to get ISBNs, bar codes, fonts, images, etc. Click To Tweet
Create Bar Codes – download a high-resolution EAN Bookland bar code for $10 USD.
These blogs are excellent book design resources, written for book designers, authors, and self-publishers, and contain lots of useful information. You can join their mailing lists to receive updates.
Book Design Made Simple – in case you haven’t discovered our blog yet!
The Book Designer – Joel Friedlander’s blog contains hundreds of posts about every aspect of writing and publishing books. An excellent resource!
The Creative Penn – Joanna Penn shares her self-publishing journey with articles, videos, and audio about writing and creativity, publishing options, book marketing, and being an authorpreneur.
1106 Design – Michele DeFilippo is a book designer, but her blog is about so much more, including self-publishing, book marketing, and printing.
Jane Friedman – blogs about writing and publishing in the digital age, and keeps up with the rapid transformation in the publishing industry.
Raven Book Design – lots of great book design resources, including info on book design, page layout, and self-publishing issues such as ISBNs.
Read more: Digital vs offset printing – which is better? What’s the difference? »
Read more: List of book printers for indie authors »
And even more: Book binding – many options beyond softcover and hardcover »
Bookmasters – offers short run printing (minimum 100 copies) plus a variety of services including storage and fulfillment, marketing and an online bookstore.
BookMobile – offers digital printing for trade paperbacks, hardcover books and full-color illustrated books.
Edition One Books – offers printing and binding for art and photography books, color coffee table books, and hardcovers with special treatments such as inset images and foil stamping.
Printorium Bookworks / Island Blue – offers short-run digital printing for books, including color pages and softcovers with flaps.
Friesens – manufactures books for publishers across North America specializing in full color hardcover and softcover books. Located in Manitoba, Canada, they give very competitive quotes for printing and shipping books to the US.
Sentinel Printing – is a nationally recognized printer of softcover books, catalogs, manuals, and directories. Located in St. Cloud, Minnisota.
Createspace – is an Amazon company, offering full services including printing, distribution, and marketing.
IngramSpark – is affiliated with Ingram and offers a simple publishing solution for self-publishers with one book (for both print and ebooks).
Lightning Source – is affiliated with Ingram and offers color POD as well as reasonable prices for offset printing.
CIPblock.com – (U.S.) get cataloging-in-publication data from a private source.
The Donohue Group – (U.S.) another source for CIP data.
Communication Arts – covering graphic design in all its forms—in our opinion, simply the best place to find design inspiration.
InDesign Skills – book design inspiration.
Pinterest – a collection of book covers by fromupnorth.
Raven Book Design – see page design samples from different genres of books ranging from simple novels to complex nonfiction books.
The Book Design Blog – book design inspiration.
WeTransfer – free transfer of files, very easy to use.
Dropbox – a popular service for saving and sharing files in the cloud.
Email Large Files – free transfer of files that are too large to email.
eBook DesignWorks – eBook conversion and design service.
Identifont – identify a font you admire by appearance, name, or similarity.
Font Shop – a great place to shop for fonts, and check out their blog too.
My Fonts – another great font store, plus you can identify a font by uploading an image to their “What The Font” page.
Fonts.com – another good place to shop for fonts, and they have frequent sales.
Can Stock Photo – offers professional royalty free stock photos at reasonable prices. High-quality images start at just $1.00, and their license agreement gives you flexibility.
First Light – represents over 200 of its own photographers, and in combination with Design Pics Canadian based photographers, has the most extensive collection of Canadian content available anywhere.
Foto Search – provides high-quality images to creative professionals for use in their designs and presentations.
Getty Images – a leading provider of digital media worldwide, creating and distributing a range of assets—from royalty-free stock photography and editorial images to video, music and multimedia.
Image Zoo – specializing in royalty-free stock illustrations, rights managed and custom illustrations from hundreds of artists in all different styles.
iStock Photo – just enter a word or phrase in the keyword search box, and away you go! You can save images in a lightbox to keep track of the images you’re interested in.
Masterfile – buy photos, vectors and illustrations for web, mobile and print.
Morguefile – free photos with no strings attached.
Pikwizard.com – free stock photos for use in books and on book covers.
RGB Stock – all images on RGB Stock are free for personal and commercial use. You may use them in digital format on websites, blogs, multimedia presentations, broadcast film and video or in printed material such as magazines, books, brochures, flyers and text books.
Wikimedia Commons – free images in the public domain; excellent for historical events, famous people, etc.
Book Design Made Simple YouTube channel – in case you haven’t discovered our YouTube channel yet! Watch tutorials on how to use InDesign for book design.
InDesignSecrets – free online newsletter that answers readers’ questions and offers tips and new ways to use InDesign.
CreativePro – similar to InDesign Secrets but relates to the entire Adobe Creative Suite.
Lynda.com – online training for the most popular Adobe products, including InDesign, of course.
Adobe InDesign: Learn & Support – Adobe’s free online tutorials, accessible through the Creative Cloud interface. Hint: InDesign has the same tools and works the same way as Adobe Illustrator for drawing, so if you need to learn about drawing, try Illustrator tutorials. Similarly, if you need to learn about images, try Photoshop tutorials.
Rocky Mountain Training – Paid interactive training with Adobe Certified Instructors. Also an excellent blog covering all kinds of InDesign (and other Adobe product) topics, both basic and advanced.
Plug-ins World – hundreds of plug-ins for all kinds of functions.
MathMagic – an equation editor for InDesign.
Movemen – solutions for mathematic, scientific and financial equations.
Proper Fraction 2 – easily make fractions using even non-OpenType fonts.
Adobe help – how to install and use plug-ins.
ISBN number (Canada) – Library and Archives Canada: information includes FAQs, a User’s Guide and online Application Forms for ISBN numbers. Must be Canadian to get an ISBN in Canada, and ISBNs are free.
ISBN number (United States) – purchase ISBNs from Bowker Identifier Services. Must be a US publisher to purchase an ISBN in the US.
Butterick’s Practical Typography – an inviting site that explains basic typography.
The Chicago Manual of Style – subscribe, or get the first 30 days free.
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation – instant, free grammar checker.
Recipes into Type: A Handbook for Cookbook Writers and Editors by Joan Whitman and Dolores Simon – a guide to editing recipes.
DIY Author – websites for authors, among other services.
Jimdo.com – based in Germany with a U.S. branch. Website made from templates plus hosting for authors with reasonable pricing.
Nodebud Authors – custom designed author websites.
Site Beginner – set up your own website using Site Beginner’s easy, free instructions on how to get a domain name and website host, and set up a website using WordPress.
Need more info about book design, InDesign, and publishing? Our website, book, videos, and blog cover every aspect of how to design and publish a book, whether you’re already an experienced book designer or a complete novice. Download chapters 1 through 9 of the book by subscribing to our blog—simply fill in the form below, and click the Join Us! button.