from solo writer to indie author

helping authors bring their books to life...from start to finish.


Structure. Flow. Consistency. Grammar. All things you don’t have to worry about once your manuscript is under my trained editor’s eye.


You dream it up–I deliver it: a radiant book cover and fully customized interior that conveys your exact vision. A book with wings.

click here for more info on my services

Think of me as your personal champion who can also create websites, design email templates, and set up book launch campaigns to rise to your needs. I don’t do cartwheels, though, so don’t ask me to do those.

Julie Valin, Editor, Poet, Book Designer, Self-Publishing Consultant

I Love Books as Much as You Do.

I was born with a book in my hand.

Click if you love books.

My Great Passion is Your Great Advantage.

With over 15 years of professional book publishing, editing, marketing and design experience, as well as a lifelong dedication to the literary arts, I will give your project the personal attention it deserves.

Book Publishing &  Editing

As much as I loved writing, college is where I discovered the flip side of it—editing—and I was hooked. Copy editing and serving on the editorial board of my college literary magazine spurred me to want to find a career in editing or publishing, or both. But since that was tougher to come by, I found a way to either incorporate those skills in all my jobs, or I pursued it on the side. In 2005, I started a small poetry press—Six Ft. Swells Press—with two friends, and began publishing books of poetry. It wasn’t until after I left my 9-5 job as a Marketing Director in 2007 that I was able to fully focus on my freelance copy editing skills and catch the wave on the forefront of the self-publishing industry.

Marketing & Author Love

My first jobs after college taught me that marketing is fairly close to sales, but sales is where you usually have to start when entering the workforce. Since sales and cold-calling wasn’t my greatest asset, I was determined to build marketing communications tasks into almost all of my sales positions for companies that didn’t have marketing departments. My creative efforts paid off when I landed my dream job of being the Marketing Director for a children’s book publisher. I was able to oversee all the aspects of how to make a newly-published book a success by interacting with distributors, sales teams, buyers, the media and the authors themselves, which was my favorite part of the job.

My Writing Life

I have been writing since Ditto jeans and arcades were the big thing. As an introvert, writing (bad rhyming) poetry was my outlet to plug into the world and express myself in a subdued but creative way. I have worked some aspect of writing into every job I’ve had, and my poems and a few short stories have been published in various literary mags and anthologies, such as The Black Shamrock, The Gasconade Review, Chiron Review, Red Fez, the Punk Rock Chapbook Series, and more.  My first book of poems, The Distance Between, is available on Amazon from Six Ft. Swell Press. In April 2022, my second collection of poems was released – Songs for Ghosts (Meadowlark Press). I am often found burning the midnight lamplight with some blues playing in the background while I tap out words.

My Literary Arts Addiction

I believe I am the epitome of a book nerd and literary arts addict. I have my fingers in all the pies in my community that have anything to do with books, writing, and poetry. From working part-time at two branches of my community library, to my book club that has been together since 2001, to serving on the board and committees of the Sierra Poetry Festival and the long-running Nevada County Poetry Series, and teaching poetry and Poetry Out Loud to regional high schools—not to mention treasuring my bookshelves like they are contemporary art pieces—you couldn’t drag me away from any of it if you tried. But why would you want to?

Me as Poet

My second book of poems, titled Songs for Ghosts, was released in April 2022 by Meadowlark Press. My work has been published in many literary magazines, including Red Fez, The Gasconade Review, and Chiron Review, as well as anthologies and collections, such as the Punk Rock Chapbook series by Epic Rites Press. Being the co-founder of the celebrated after-hours-poetry press, Six Ft. Swells, I am a championer of the small press and making poetry as fun, inclusive, and accessible as possible.  

Check out my poetry pageJulie action shot
Songs for Ghosts

My Book Design Work

Some of my book covers through the years….

When People Say Nice Things About My Work.

Client testimonials

I highly recommend Julie Valin. She’s a standout professional in book design, publishing and marketing. Not only is her integrity and work standard impeccable, but she’s a lovely human being with a delightful sense of humor.”

Christie Nelson

Author, Dreaming Mill Valley; Beautiful Illusion

I have worked with numerous graphic designers in my long history of publishing. When I need a project done right, my go to is Julie Valin. Whether you have a clear vision for your book cover, a photo or art you want to incorporate, or no clear idea which direction you want to go, Julie always listens and delivers a cover design that will exceed your expectations. If you want your next project to be spectacular, trust Julie to deliver results.

Wolfgang Carstens

Poet, Publisher, Epic Rites Press

Julie’s design work is thoughtful, creative and beautifully done for both interior and cover work on a book. I have used her services for three poetry anthologies and have been impressed with the quality of each of them.”

Terri Glass

Poet and Coordinator, CA Poets in the Schools

I’ve had the pleasure and good fortune to take advantage of Julie Valin’s many talents on several occasions. A writer herself, Julie knows the heart of writers and can provide marketing and editorial input with both gentleness and expertise. I’ve recommended her to several other writers and they simply rave about her.”

Betsy Graziani Fasbinder

Author, Fire & Water; Filling Her Shoes

What I’m Talking About.

This literary addict loves books and everything about publishing them. Sometimes I will want to say stuff about them, and here is where I will do that.

mouse with wings artwork

Art Makes it So.

“fairymouse” digital painting by Angela Tannehill-Caldwell I’m just sitting on my back deck looking out at my serene japanese maples and listening to the birds of dusk have their evening[…]

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The Many Iterations of a Book Cover

Book cover design is an art form that goes through an evolution of starts, stops, and redirects. To any professional book designer, this challenge is what sparks the drive to[…]

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My Bookshelves, My Life…

Someone told me once that books represent our intellectual history, and that is now my argument for why I can never get rid of my books. That worn, frayed red[…]

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Your readers are waiting….

Contact me to get started on your self-publishing journey!