*****  MARK’S LIST  ****

Low-Cost Ebook Formatting and Cover Design


Latest update: July 24, 2023

This list is divided into two sections:  Ebook formatters and Ebook cover designers.

The professionals on this list are freelancers.  You’re hiring the freelancer, not Smashwords. Most are fellow Smashwords authors. We make this list available to you as a public service. None of the service providers listed here pay commissions or fees to be listed.   This list was curated by Mark Coker, and closed to future additions.  As independent freelancers, Smashwords cannot warrant the quality of their work.

Please pay the service provider in advance via PayPal, Zelle, or other online means.

We recommend you consider these service providers only for the specialty category of service under which they're listed.  That's why they're on this list.

Feel free to report your experiences (positive or otherwise) back to Mark Coker of Smashwords at first initial second initial at smashwords.com.  The service providers may also report back to Mark, so please be professional and follow the instructions below.

To expedite communications with your chosen provider, add them to your email’s whitelist (a.k.a. "safe list") so reply emails don’t go to your spam folder.  If you feel like your chosen provider has been unresponsive, please check your spam folder.

Most providers on this list have been here six to ten years.  Each has probably completed hundreds of jobs.  Each remains on the list because they do good work, act professionally and ethically, and have a solid track record of satisfying their author clients.

If Smashwords or retailer formatting change in the future, and your ebook requires modification, it is not the responsibility of the service provider or Smashwords to revise your book for you.  The same thing with covers.


Most formatters will assure your placement in the Smashwords Premium Catalog for distribution to retailers listed here: http://smashwords.com/distribution

Review the Smashwords Style Guide to learn how ebook formatting is different from print formatting.  Ebooks, for example, cannot and should not look like a facsimile of the print book.  Instead, as described in the Style Guide, ebooks are designed for "reflowability" so that the words can shapeshift with difference screen sizes and reader font size choices). 

If you don’t have the time, skills or patience to implement the instructions in the Style Guide yourself at no cost, then hire from this list.

Novels and narrative non-fiction are the bestselling ebooks. Novels are the easiest to format. Some formatters charge more for non-fiction, or for books that contain multiple images and advanced navigation.  Books that are difficult to design as ebooks:  Childrens' picture books which are 100% images, and where any narrative is embedded directly within the image.  To make such ebooks more available, accessible and enjoyable to ebook buyers, reimagine your book so that the narrative is stripped out of the images, and can then reflow above and below the image.

Email your chosen provider your complete manuscript as a Word document, and ask them to estimate their fee.

Please note that "formatting" is very different from editing.  Formatters do not perform editing, copy editing or proofreading because it is not their responsibility. If your book is filled with gross typographic errors, Smashwords cannot accept it into the Premium Catalog, even if the formatting is perfect.

Do not ask the formatter to upload your file to Smashwords for you. You must do this yourself (it's easy!). Click here for instructions


Ebook Launch Formatting
Formatting starting at $19 for novels and $49 for other types of ebooks.
To get started, click on the following link: http://www.ebooklaunch.com/ebook-formatting
Email: team@ebooklaunch.com
Word doc, Pages, Open Office, RTF, TXT files accepted. Premium Catalog guaranteed.


Lucinda Campbell
Fiction only. Pricing based on word count.  
Under 10K words - $10.00
10K-15K wds $15.00
16K-20K wds $20.00
21K-50K wds $25.00
51K-75K $30.00
76K-99K $35.00
100K-125K $40.00
Over 125K ask for price quote.  Pricing varies with the inclusion of photos/artwork or complex ToC. 50% deposit req'd.


Anne-Sophie Gomez (fluent in French and English)
Mon tarif est de $30/heure ou 20€/heure. J'aime l'idée de travailler avec des auteurs du monde entier. Envoyez-moi par mail votre document Word et je vous transmettrai un devis/estimation du coût. Je suis à l'aise aussi bien en anglais qu'en français, ma langue maternelle. Contact : anne-sophie-gomez@wanadoo.fr

I charge $30 per hour, or 20 €/hour. Email me the Word document for a cost estimate.


Annemarie Nikolaus (Fluent in German, Italian, English and French)
Mein Honorar beträgt 20 €/Stunde.
Belletristik und Sachbuch; keine Lyrik. Kostenvoranschlag auf Grundlage des Dokuments.
Ich konvertiere auch in andere Formate für lokale Plattformen.

20€/hour or the equal rate in other currency.
Fiction and non-fiction, no poetry.


Giuseppe Meligrana (Fluent in Italian, English)
Servizio formattazione ebook per autori ed editori italiani.  Il compenso va dalle 25,00 € ad ora per le fiction alle 30,00 € ad ora per le non-fiction.
Mandami via mail il tuo manoscritto per una prima stima.  Offro anche servizio grafico per copertine.


Mario Carrasco Teja (Spanish and English)
Rates start at $30. Email me for a quote. Tarifas desde $30 USD. Envíame un correo para cotizarte.


Elizabeth Beeton of B10 Mediaworx
FICTION starts at $65.  NONFICTION: starts at $80. Specializes in formatting complex NONFICTION, including conversion from pdf and/or image to a Word file, cleanup of OCR, and creation of a linked table of contents and linked footnotes (one-way or reciprocal).
For clients desiring custom EPUB and Kindle files, can do sidebars, pull-quotes, wraparound images
hanging indents (bibliographies) and bullet-point lists, tables, embedded fonts, and output to EPUB3.
Turnaround time is 4 business days. Rush service (12-hour turnaround) is available. Request quote.


Shelley Glasow, books@goodlifeguide.com
Standard $35: Unlimited words, hyperlinks
Ultimate $75: Above plus images (35), footnotes (100), detailed/complex, PDF
Guaranteed.  References. Any file to .EPUB or .DOC


Ray Hoy, Publisher
Misty Mountain Productions
_ _ _ _

We are one of the five Internet ePublisher pioneers, dating back decades. Our eBook formatting provides a beautiful print-like look, $69.00 (up to 140k words). Our paperback formatting is downright elegant ($199.99 and you get the paperback AND eBook editions). We format fiction only, with a maximum of two interior photos.

Just e-mail your preference of paperback and/or eBook, and attach your cover art and book file, and we will e-mail you a PayPal invoice. Upon receipt of your payment we will immediately begin production (usually 2 to 3 working days). Satisfaction totally guaranteed, period! All inquiries answered promptly.
e-mail alaskaindie@gmail.com


Maureen Cutajar
$50 per title. Price includes a linked ToC, limited footnotes/endnotes, hyperlinks, and up to 5 embedded images. Email your file for a quote. I aim to provide quick turnaround.


Pete LeForge
Fiction, NF, drama, and poetry.
Short Stories and chapbooks: $35.
Novels up to 100,000 words and poetry up to 100 pp: $75.
Illustrations, footnotes, and complex lines may cost extra. Email your Word file for an estimate.


Les Denton, lesdenton.com
Fast detail-oriented work by technology pro. Linked TOC, advice on Title/Copyright/Author pages standard. Fiction preferred. Starting at $75, rate varies based on multiple factors including complexity and rush jobs.


Marti Dobkins
$60 up to 50,000 words, $75 for over 50,000.
Includes linked table of contents and embedded images.
Premium Catalog guaranteed. References available. No horror or erotic.


Jesse Gordon
Fiction preferred, all genres welcome. $25 - $60 up to 80k words. Longer or more complex: query. Linked ToC included. Quick turnaround. Premium Catalog guaranteed. http://adarnedgoodbook.com/


Brenda Van Niekerk
brendavniekerk@hotmail.com (website - http://triomarketers.com)
Up to 50,000 words – $50
Over 50,000 words - $75
Each includes linked TOC - up to 15 entries
Extensive linked TOC, many images, text boxes, columns and complicated endnote/footnote links will cost extra.  Request quote.
Any file format accepted. Can convert any format - InDesign / PDF / Photoshop to the required Smashwords guidelines and size.


ReAnimus Press
We've helped many award-winning and best-selling authors, all at reasonable rates. Costs start at $17, depending on your specific needs, for which we're happy to give a fixed quote.  We can handle anything from simple to very complex formatting requirements. We also specialize in scanning/OCRing/correcting books from print copies with 100% accuracy.
For those considering the "Nuclear Option" to remove formatting corruption in Word .doc files, ReAnimus Press offers a free Nuclear Option Assistant tool at www.ReAnimus.com/fixformat
Contact: www.ReAnimus.com/contact.ht


Stefanie Thürwächter (Author's Little Helpers)
info@authorslittlehelpers.com or www.authorslittlehelpers.com
Fiction and non-fiction.
Fluent in English, German and Spanish
Rates start at $30 per hour. Email me to receive a concrete offer.



The people listed below design ebook cover images. Ask them for a cover that meets Smashwords requirements.  By meeting Smashwords requirements, your cover will automatically meet the requirements of all the major ebook retailers.  Learn about the latest cover image requirements effective August 2012:  http://blog.smashwords.com/2012/06/new-ebook-cover-image-requirements.html

Carefully review the designer's online portfolio before you contact them.  Look for a designer whose demonstrated capabilities match the vision you have for your own cover. Do they have experience in your genre or category?

A great cover image makes a promise to the reader.  It tells your target reader, "this book is for you." 

The image should tell the reader, “this is the book you’re looking for to experience [the feeling of first love for romance; fear for horror; edge of your seat suspense for thrillers; knowledge for a non-fiction how-to; an inspiring story of a personal journey for a memoir, etc].”  Of course, these are only rough examples.  Every book has a different target reader, and a different nuanced promise it must make to reach that reader.

For thoughts on the importance of covers, see the March 2013 blog post by Mark Coker titled, "Six Tips to Bring Your Book Back from the Doldrums" or download Mark's free ebook, The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success or watch Mark's Youtube video on best practices, The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success

If you're looking for additional inspiration for what a high-quality professional cover should look like, a good place to start is to view the top 20 bestsellers in your genre at a large ebook retailer, such as the Apple Books store, Smashwords store, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon.  You want your cover image to look as good or better than what the big NY publishers are putting out.

The price ranges for cover artists vary dramatically, from $35 to $350.  There is not always a direct correlation between price and quality, so carefully review the online portfolios and then budget appropriately. 

Most cover designers limit the number of back and forth revisions.  Their time is valuable, so please honor it and make sure you and the designer have clear expectations for your relationship.  If you expect a large number of back and forth revisions, you should expect to pay more.

Many of the custom cover designers below also offer "premade" covers.  Premades are unique, one-of-a-kind designs.  Premades offer the advantage of being instantly viewable, quickly purchaseable (no more waiting months for an artist's schedule to open up for you), and they're usually much more affordable than custom-designed covers. 




Ebook Launch Cover Design
Prices range $99 - $279 USD. For the gallery, options, and pricing go to http://ebooklaunch.com/ebook-cover-design/
Email: team@ebooklaunch.com
Pre-made and custom ebook cover designs available. All genres welcome. No stock image fees.


Laura Shinn Designs
Author/Book Cover Designer/Formatter
In most cases, I charge $50-$60 per cover and I offer up to 3 test covers. I design based on stock photo images. Please contact me and I’ll send you my Cover Art & Formatting Form with more details. http://laurashinn.yolasite.com


Joleene Naylor
$35 for a pre-existing design. $45 and up for original covers. All genres.
portfolio: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pandora_6666/sets/72157623412340567/
Please read my FAQ before you contact me: http://coverart.joleenenaylor.com/


Rita Toews, $45
Includes three test covers and then we work to provide the cover your book deserves, whether for an ebook, a print book, or a CD cover for an audiobook.
Portfolio:  http://www.yourebookcover.com/portfolio/


Jeremy Taylor (GB)
Starts at $58.  All genres welcome.


Caligraphics ebook cover design and website development
Cal Sharp, Creative Director
Website: https://www.caligraphicsdesign.com/ • Email: caligraphicsart@gmail.com 
Original ebook cover designs starting at $65 with client-provided photos or artwork. We can acquire images from online agencies at reasonable or no cost. Unlimited proofs provided until you’re happy with your cover. Ebook formatting $50 per 50,000 words. Writer site: https://calsharp.com/ • SW author page: http://smashwords.com/profile/view/calsharp • Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/caligraphics/ • Twitter https://twitter.com/caligraphicsart • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Caligraphics


Renee Barratt - Preditors & Editors Best Artist 2012 & 2013
Pre-made covers start at $50
Full-Service Custom Cover design packages start at $200.
Promo links to your Smashwords book page on my site and my FB page included.
Special Smashwords eBook pricing available: $99.  Includes one premium high-resolution image with a little bit of editing.  Professional typography for title, author name, & tagline included.  Mention "Smashwords Special" on the first contact to qualify.


VILA DESIGN (Award Winning Designer)
Custom ebook covers range $69 - $169. But typical cover design runs between $89 - $119 depending on your needs. Stock image fees included. Unlimited rounds of revisions until you're 100% satisfied. Fast turnaround and professional designs. All genres welcome. Special prices offered if you need more than one cover.
Email: villatat@gmail.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/viladesign27


Fiona Jayde Media
Professional book cover design for romance, young adult, fantasy and science-fiction genres.$125 for a high-resolution e-book cover with 5 rounds of revisions.
First-time clients from Smashwords get a $50 off discount for their first cover.
Portfolio: http://www.fionajaydemedia.com


Covers by Ramona
Book Cover Designer
$50-$75 for custom covers
$35 for pre-made exclusive covers (I will not sell the same design more than once)
Promo links to your Smashwords page from my blog included
Portfolio:  http://www.coversbyramona.blogspot.com/


Mayhem Cover Creations
Designer - L.J. Anderson
Author/Book Cover Designer
Covers are $100.00
Predesigned covers also available - $65.00
Portfolio: http://www.mayhemcovercreations.com/#!cover-portfolio/cipy


Melissa Alvarez
Graphic Artist
Professional Custom eBook Designs
$39 pre-designed covers. Custom packages range from $79 to over $300. To see package details, portfolio, and more visit BookCovers.Us.  Over 12 years experience in all genres. I link to your Smashwords page or website from my design websites and promote you on my Facebook and Twitter accounts.


Hadleigh Charles
Prices start at $40, with a typical cover costing $89.
Fast turnaround with three free revisions; digital image manipulation and original artworks offered.


SelfPubBookCovers.com - Now a Draft2Digital Company (read the July 24, 2023 news here)
The world’s leading marketplace for high-quality, affordably-priced pre-made book covers, ready to customize and download INSTANTLY. Established 2012! Over 30K  professionally-curated covers, available in all genres, all styles, and from hundreds of professional artists, most for just $69. *Once a cover is sold, it's never sold again.* We've sold over 10,000+ unique book covers to happy indie authors.  BONUS: free typography changes forever.    FREE: see how your name and book title looks on any cover at SelfPubBookCovers.com!






Please help spread the word about Smashwords!  Do you know other great authors not yet on Smashwords?  Please tell a friend.  Every new author to Smashwords brings more readers which helps all authors.

Smashwords Resources:

Smart Author Podcast (Mark's free masterclass on ebook publishing, marketing and promotion)

Smashwords Style Guide (how to format your book)

Frequently Asked Questions (a must-read for all authors, includes a glossary of ebook publishing terms)

The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success (learn the best practices of the most successful Smashwords authors)

Smashwords Video Tutorials on YouTube (we'll show you how easy it is to become an e-publishing expert!)

Read Mark's site updates (bug reports, marketing tips, general Smashwords news)

Premium Catalog Requirements (how to fast-track your book for the Premium Catalog)

Smashwords Dashboard (this is where you control all aspects of your book):

ISBN Manager (attach ISBN to your book, required by Apple, Sony, Kobo):

Channel Manager (control your distribution here):

Smashwords Blog:  (offers an email subscription option)

Official Smashwords Facebook page (connect with fellow Smashwords authors and readers)

Connect with Mark:

Follow Mark on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/markcoker
Friend Mark on Facebook:  http://facebook.com/markcoker