We’ll start with Amazon’s free publishing companies since Amazon has the world’s largest share of online ebook and printed book sales. Check this blog to see just how large that share is:
Kindle Direct Publishing: KDP produces ebooks for Kindle readers. If you publish your ebooks exclusively with them, there are opportunities to offer free promotions and sales that they will promote
Createspace: Publishes paperbacks, offers free cover design templates and ISBNs. Amazon has the world’s largest share of online ebook and printed book sales.

For your book to be sold by Chapters/Indigo, Kobo, Barnes & Noble or other online and brick and mortar bookstores, you need to choose other methods of publication.

Smashwords offers free ebook publication. Its catalogue reaches major distributors around the world, including Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Overdrive, Apple and Inktera. Smashwords supplies free ISBNs. You need a cover design.
Ingram Spark offers both paperback and ebook publication for a fee. Currently the cost is $49.00 US. You need to provide your own ISBN and cover design. ISBNs are free in Canada at  In the United States, there is a fee for ISBNs and the location to apply is here: Watch this site, because sometimes they have sales. When you publish through Ingram Spark, your book will be listed in the Ingram catalogue, which is a traditional source of book purchases for chain and independent bookstores.
To compare Createspace and Ingram check this blog by Giacomo Giammatteo:

For fantastic advice on self-publishing, check
Joanna Penn:
Jane Friedman:
Joel Friedlander:
Kristen Joy:
oseph Hogue
uke Diercks:

For some basic information on ebooks and taxes check:

Also good to read:

Top Tips from Self-Published Authors “Blurb Stories is dedicated to exploring all facets of self-publishing, and from multiple perspectives. So this week we thought we’d offer some of our favorite advice on writing, publishing, and promoting, from some of the most respected self-published writers out there.

Elizabeth Spann Craig: Craig is a hybrid author, published traditionally as well as pursuing self-publishing. Her site has many thoughtful and helpful posts about being a hybrid author, as well as, about her ventures into audio books.

The Writers’ Knowledge Base: This is a fantastic search engine for writers. Here you’ll find many blogs by experts in the field of self-publishing and any other writing topic that you can imagine.

A fantastic resource for short story writers by Jerry Jenkins: “How to Write a Short Story That Captivates Your Reader”A must-read.

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