Self-publishing recommendations?

I have finished the draft of my book which is exciting (and will post more about it/why I’ve written it in the next while*). This means I am close to the next stage: publishing it! There’s no guarantee an established, traditional publisher will say yes to it and it takes weeks or months to hear back from them, if you do at all. I don’t want to wait that long and also like the idea of having control over the cover design etc.

THEREFORE I’ve decided to go down the self-publishing route. I am looking for recommendations. (I know there’s Google but I like traditional word of mouth too).

Please let me know if you or someone you know has found a self-publishing firm you like, and why,

It’s a short, non-fiction paperback – and here’s a bit more detail about what I’m looking for, if that helps:

1) Obviously, good quality yet affordable (I have a small budget and expect prices to reflect quality – but not to the extent they are extortionate!)

2) Produces arty/slightly DIY (as in creative, not rubbish) designs

3) Allows you to use your own cover design (or even does it for you from a brief)

4) Option of having images/illustrations on pages inside the book

5) Has links to independent bookshops/websites as potential stockists (if this is something one can do). I am NOT bothered about e-books or having an Amazon link

Thank you!

*This picture’s a clue to one of the reasons

From Give It All, Give It Now by Annie Dillard
From Give It All, Give It Now by Annie Dillard

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