Friday, September 16

The Best Tools for Indie Authors

By Dave Durden

Part of the Indie Authors Series

As indie authors, we lack the support and resources traditionally provided by a publisher.

On the one hand, we gain complete creative control over our work, and the ability to connect with our readers in the way we choose.

On the other, we find ourselves responsible for tasks outside the traditional author skillset, such as cover design and book formatting.

Thankfully, a number of tools exist which can help level the playing field for indie authors. Read on to discover the best of the bunch and how to make the most of them.

Upgrade Your Writing Software With Scrivener


Writers are stubborn creatures, and we often like to stick with our familiar processes.

Is there a more important tool of the trade for wordsmiths than our word processor software?

Many of us get by just fine with Microsoft Word or Google Docs. However, something superior exists, and it goes by the name of Scrivener.

Scrivener allows written scenes to be rearranged and reordered in a way which isn’t possible with other software. This saves the problem of having inspiration strike outside the chronology of your story. Simply write while the creativity is flowing, and easily insert the scene into its proper place later.

Scrivener also allows for advanced outlining capabilities, word count target setting, and a useful virtual corkboard which allows for the labeling and arranging of themes, characters and other essential details.

Upgrade Your Research With KDP Rocket


Sometimes, our creative impulse draws us towards a genre or topic which may be unfamiliar territory.

Sadly, many such impulses are crushed by the cold economic reality of the contemporary indie publishing climate. Interesting ideas never have the chance to take root and flourish due to the commercial uncertainty of pursuing them.

KDP Rocket is a tool which allows you to explore the commercial potential of any given idea, and its competitive landscape, before taking the risk and writing the book.

Imagine the freedom of being able to pursue new genres and types of writing, safe in the knowledge that you had conducted solid market research beforehand, and felt as sure as possible your idea had every chance of success.

Best of all, KDP Rocket was developed by a self-publisher who walks the walk as well as talking the talk, Dave Chesson of Kindlepreneur. It can be used safe in the knowledge that its creator has experienced the struggles and frustrations we all go through as independent authors.

Upgrade Your Formatting With Jutoh


Some writers are blessed with creative talent across both the visual and written domains, while others excel with the written word, but struggle with aesthetics.

Jutoh saves you the scenario of writing a beautifully crafted book, but struggling to present and format it in a way which does it justice. It allows you to present your content on the page beautifully, and ensure that your work will appear exactly as you intend, no matter which format you export it to.

Jutoh also has a host of features which allow for narration and other aspects related to audiobook creation to take place easily and seamlessly within its interface. Even if you don’t currently produce audiobooks, it’s a smart move to make the process as painless as possible in the future, and Jutoh does just that.

Level The Playing Field


Now you know some of the most powerful tools which allow indie authors to upgrade their process and reduce the resource disparity with traditional published authors.

If you’ve used any of the tools above, please comment and share how they’ve helped you upgrade your process. If you know of any others, I’d love to hear about them.

Ultimately, we owe it to our work to give it every advantage possible. If there’s any part of the indie author process you’re struggling with, don’t suffer in silence. Chances are, there’s a tried and tested tool to help.

Dave Durden is passionate about helping independent writers and publishers discover competitive advantages online. He blogs at AMZProf.com.

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