In between indexes, I spend a lot of time marketing my book indexing services, learning about the art of indexing, learning about new trends in the publishing field, and looking at statistics.  Over the years, my list of websites grows and I find myself being more and more productive while waiting for the next index.  I also find that the time in between indexes has grown shorter and shorter, and so I have to be more productive with the time that I do have.  Anyway, here's a list of some of the sites that I have found to be most useful for Jigsaw Indexing.  Do you visit any sites that you find you can't live without?

American Society for Indexing
The ASI website is a fantastic resource for people interested in book indexing, for publishers looking to hire an indexer, and of course for professional book indexers.  ASI has numerous resources for learning more about and staying on top of the profession through publications, courses and networking. 

I will be honest - it took me awhile to understand Twitter.  But finally it clicked.  Twitter is one of the most useful tools for staying on top of whatever it is that you are interested in.  It is news in real-time.  I use Twitter to stay in contact with publishers, to find new publishers, and to connect with other indexers.  Twitter has opened my eyes to the world of publishing and has introduced me to a myriad of resources useful to the profession.

Freelance Folder
Yes, I discovered Freelance Folder on Twitter, and I really can't say enough good things about this site.  The articles are always useful, cutting edge, and thought provoking.  The site also has a job board and forums.

Freelance Switch
Freelance Switch is similar-ish to Freelance Folder.  For awhile, they had a podcast for freelancers, but that ended recently.  You can still access the nearly 50 podcasts that they ran, and these are fantastic to listen to while working on other things.

Google Analytics
I love statistics, and I love Google Analytics.  If you have a website and you want to see who's visiting, how long they stayed and how they got there in the first place, then check this out.  There is a slight learning curve, but it's worth taking the time to figure it out.

Google AdWords
If you want your ads to appear in a Google search, sign up for Google AdWords.  This is the only site on the list that you'll have to pay for, but you can choose exactly how much you're willing to spend per month so it can be as affordable as you want it to be.

I love Weebly.  I really, really do.  And I can't believe that it's free.  I am a walking promoter of the site and honestly love my website, thanks to the simplicity of Weebly.  Their customer service is fantastic, too.  I had one (and only one) issue with setting up my website, and within 24 hours I not only had someone tell me what was wrong, but they also fixed it for me!  Fantastic.

YouTube has been such a grea tool for working from home.  Instead of spending hundreds of dollars to get someone to set up a website for me, I went to YouTube and learned how to set up my Weebly site.  I am currently learning how to more effectively use Google AdWords.  When I was new to Twitter, I found a fantastic tutorial to get me started. 

And for fun:

The Oatmeal
The Oatmeal has some seriously funny comics, and some relate to grammar and business.  They can be a bit crass, so please be aware!
When I first became interested in the art of book indexing, I wanted to gather as much information as I could find.  Many of the books written on indexing were outdated, and the library I frequented didn't have much information to give me.

I began scouring the internet for any sources I could find.  I looked up any combination of keywords I could think of:  Book Indexing, Back of the Book Indexing, Freelance Indexing, Book Indexers...the list goes on and on.

By far the most useful source of information I could find was a large set of articles written on Suite 101.  Topics range from the definition of indexing to getting started in indexing to rates.  As someone who was interested in becoming an indexer, these articles were an integral key to my knowledge and understanding of becoming a book indexer and even today I will read through some of these articles or direct new indexers to them.  And while some of these articles are over ten years old, they are still a fantastic starting point for those who are interested.  Here is the complete set of the Suite 101 Indexing Articles.

Once I decided that indexing was a career I wanted to pursue, I signed up for a course.  I was already getting my Master's Degree in Library and Information Science, and they were offering a course on Indexing and Abstracting.  The course was extremely valuable in learning the skills and intricacies of indexing as an art.  Throughout the course, we used Nancy Mulvaney's book, Indexing Books and this is still a source that I use regularly while indexing.  Her book covers a wide variety of topics and is one I recommend to anyone interested in indexing or any current indexer.

Another valuable book has been the Chicago Manual of Style.  I believe you can purcahse the chapter on indexing separately, but I tend to look at other chapters and find that the full version is well worth the extra space it takes up on the bookshelf.

Last but certainly not least, the American Society for Indexing website is an incredible tool for indexers.  The site is very well organized (imagine that!) and has useful information for both members and non-members.  You can learn more about coursework in indexing, find other useful publications, discover other indexers, learn about special interest groups and a whole lot more.

Happy Indexing!