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Book Formatting, Cover Design, and Publishing Consultation Services


My name is Istvan Szabo, a Top Rated Seller on Fiverr with over 3,910 five-star ratings, based in Budapest, Hungary. I own Sapphire Guardian International, specializing in professional book formatting, cover design, and graphic arts. I have worked on over 3,186 titles and designed more than 300 covers and 54 audiobook covers for clients from 79 countries, including organizations like the United Nations and the CDC. I am also a U.S. Horror Fiction Best Seller and a multi-award-winning author (under the pseudonym Stephen Wayne), and a stock photographer for Adobe Stock, Shutterstock, and Depositphotos.

In my free time, I cherish adventures with my family and friends, and participating in various sports such as long-distance runnings (10k to half-marathons), kickboxing, and scuba diving. Above all, I am a proud father to baby Christopher and a loving husband to Barbara.

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Typesetter of over



Designer of over



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What I Do

Book Typesetting

I offer professional print and eBook formatting for a seamless reader experience across all platforms.

Turnaround: 2-5 days.

Cover Extension/Design

I create eye-catching, professional book covers by extending existing designs or crafting unique visuals.

Turnaround (Extension): 2-4 days.

Turnaround (Design): 3-7 days.

Modifying PDF Files

I edit and modify PDF files, convert them to Doc format, clean scanned materials, and add fillable forms if needed.

Turnaround: 1-4 days.


For general questions on book formatting and publishing, check my guidebook on Amazon or contact me for special requests.

Special Note: I don't provide marketing and promotion consultancy.

Service Fees

Text Books

(per format)

Available formats: Print-ready PDF, Kindle KPF, EPub, Downloadable PDF

Standard Text Books

Every 2000 words: 5 USD

Image Formatting*: 1 USD/image

Image Insertion*: 1 USD/image

Tablet Formatting**: 1 USD/tablet

Upload to Printer: Contact me

Source Files (DocX): Free

Poetry and Recipe Books

Depends on the content. Please contact me first.

Special Note: Provide textbook project files in Doc, Docx, or editable PDF formats, and images in 300dpi, JPG, or PNG. I don't work with InDesign or INDD files.

*Client-supplied images only; I don't provide stock images.

**Client-supplied tables only; contact me for custom table creation offers.

Contact me before ordering to discuss project details. Upfront payment via PayPal or Wise, with delivery via Dropbox.

Children/Image Books

(per format)

Available formats: Print-ready PDF, Kindle KPF, EPub, Downloadable PDF

Every 2 Pages: 5 USD

Text Insertion: 5 USD / 2 pages

Upload to Printer: Contact me

Source Files (PSD): Free

Special Note: Clients must supply all image materials. I don't create illustrations for children's books or provide photography services. Provide images in 300dpi, JPG, or PNG and text files in Doc, DocX, or PDF formats.

Contact me before ordering to discuss project details. Upfront payment via PayPal or Wise, with delivery via Dropbox.

Cover Design/Extension

For Already Designed Front Covers

Back Cover/Spine Design: 30 USD

Hardcover Jacket Flaps: 10 USD

Resizing: Contact me

Paperback to Hardcover: Contact me

Upload to Printer: Contact me

Audio Cover: 15 USD

3D Mock Up: 15 USD

Source Files (PSD): Free

Cover Design from Scratch

Clients must provide image materials and back cover text, depending on the design. Please contact me first to discuss the requirements.

Special Note: Cover files should be in 300dpi, JPG, PNG, or PDF, while back page text should be in Doc, DocX, or PDF formats. Clients must provide image materials, back cover text, and ISBN number (mandatory for Ingram covers).

Contact me before ordering to discuss project details. Upfront payment via PayPal or Wise, with delivery via Dropbox.

Modifying PDF Files

Modifying Content*: 5 USD / 2 pages

Image Insertion**: 1 USD/image

Fillable Forms: $1-10 / page

Creating Hyperlinks: $5 / document

Additional Requests: Contact me

Special Note: Editable PDFs are required for modifications. Contact me for scanned document modifications.

Be advised: I don't modify invoices and other legal documents as that is forgery and is violating the law.

*Contact me before modifying PDFs to ensure compatibility.

**Clients must provide all images; I don't supply stock images

Contact me before ordering to discuss project details. Upfront payment via PayPal or Wise, with delivery via Dropbox.

  • Important Milestones in My Life

  • Summer Works - My First Typesetting and Graphic Jobs

    June 1995 - July 2001

    During summer vacations, I gained valuable experience through various jobs, including graphic arts, newspaper printing, McDonald's, furniture store heavy loader, and movie theater ticket taker. These jobs taught me hard work and played a role in shaping my journey.

  • Generali Insurance Solutions - Insurance Agent

    July 2001 - January 2003

    I learned negotiation as an insurance agent for Generali Insurance Solutions, specializing in foreign customers.

  • Digital Reality - Scriptwriter and Book Formatter

    January 2003 - December 2006

    My career in writing, typesetting, and game design began with War on Terror and Warfront: Turning Point.

  • Tourist Street Vendor

    December 2006 - December 2007

    I took a break from corporate life to become a street vendor in Budapest, where I honed my negotiation skills and pursued creative interests.

  • Freelance Screenwriter, Director, Typesetter and Graphic Artist

    August 2007 - July 2014

    I turned freelance, participating in projects like the award-winning short film 15 Minutes of Fame and self-publishing stories.

  • CECOP Group - Graphic Artist and Marketing Material Writer

    January 2008 - December 2008

    I worked as a graphic artist for Spain's CECOP Group and was mentored by CEO Jorge Rubio.

  • Police Academy

    2009 March

    I applied to the Hungarian Police Department, taking a detour in my career.

  • Fiverr - Book Formatter, Graphic Artist and Consultant

    December 2013 - Present

    I joined Fiverr in 2013 to offer my services to international clients.

  • Sapphire Guardian - Founder

    July 2014 - Present

    I founded Sapphire Guardian, the homepage for all my services, while working on Fiverr.

  • Police Department - Hungarian/English Interpreter

    2014 August - 2017 December

    As an interpreter for a Hungarian homicide detective, I collaborated with various agencies, honing my negotiation and observation skills through experiences like kidnapping cases. In 2017, I was offered a recovery special agent position but declined indefinitely.

  • AdobeStock, Shutterstock, DepositPhotos - Stock Photographer

    April 2020 - Present

    During lockdown, I discovered a new passion for photography, with most early stock photos taken during outdoor trips with my wife.

  • Debut Horror Novel - Steve the Zombie

    July 2023

    My debut horror novel, 'Steve the Zombie,' was released.

  • Notable Achievements, Classes and Awards

  • David Freeman's Beyond Structure Master Class

    September 2005

    I completed David Freeman's Premiere Screenwriting and Script Development Master Class in London, UK.

  • UPC-AXN Film Festival 2007 3rd Place - 15 Minutes of Fame

    October 2007

    My short film, 15 Minutes of Fame, placed 3rd at the UPC-AXN Film Festival and was a personal favorite of renowned producer Andy Vajna.

  • The Psychological and Criminological Aspects of Lying

    May 2019

    I took Lt. Colonel (Ret) Peter Doszpot's Homicide Detective Master Class.

  • PADI Open Water Diver License

    July 2019

    I became a licensed Open Water Diver after passing the exam in Neufelder See, Austria.

  • My first non-stop half marathon

    May 2020

    I ran my first non-stop half marathon (13.1 miles/21.0975 km) in 2 hours 19 minutes 28 seconds and repeated the distance in May 2022 with an 11.51km run followed by a 9.68km stroller push (12kg stroller + 9.5kg baby payload) for a total of 21.19km.

  • Fiverr - Top Rated Seller

    October 2020

    After years of hard work Fiverr promoted me to the level of Top Rated Seller.

  • Various Master Class Courses

    February 2021 - July 2021

    During the Covid lockdowns, I honed my skills with Master Classes from experts like David Baldacci, James Patterson, David Lynch, Neil Gaiman, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Joyce Carol Oates, and FBI negotiator Chris Voss.

  • Fiverr Learn

    March 2021 - Present

    I completed Fiverr Learn's Master Classes on online freelancing, storytelling, website building with WordPress, and PR mistakes.

  • Air Force Marathon: History and Heritage Running Series

    May 2021 - Present

    I've competed in six History and Heritage Air Force Marathons, placing as high as 6th in the 2024 Black Widow 10k run, and in three Air Force Marathon 10k events, with my best 10k finish at 37th. Notably, I completed one 10k race with a 12kg stroller and 13kg baby. As the sole Hungarian long-distance runner in these events, I'll represent Hungary again in the 28th Air Force Marathon's 10k race in September 2024.

  • Fiverr - 3000th 5-Star Review

    June 2021

    Eight years into my Fiverr journey, I received my 3000th five-star rating.

  • Fiverr Business

    April 2022

    Fiverr promoted me to Top Rated Seller and featured my services on Fiverr Business.

  • Special Book Project for the United Nations

    July 2022

    I was privileged to work on a unique book project for the United Nations Office at Geneva.

  • NightCafé Art Challenge 5th Place

    March 2023

    My A.I. artwork 'Fantasy Frigate' ranked 5th in the NightCafé Daily Challenge.

  • Bloodline DNA Analysis

    April 2023

    As per Nebula Genomics, AncestryDNA, MyTrueAncestry, DNAGenics, and FamilyTree DNA, I descend from Hungarian Scythians and Pannonian Ostrogoths, with ancient relatives including King Ladislaus I of Hungary, King Bela III of the Arpad Dynasty, and sorcerer/demon hunter Gleb Svyatoslavich, and Prince Izjaslav Ingaevych of the Rurik Dynasty.

  • Steve the Zombie - Literary Multi-Award Winner

    September-October 2023

    'Steve the Zombie' has won the Literary Titan Gold Award, and the Firebird Book Award in three categories: 1st Place - Horror Category, 1st Place - Dystopian Category, and 2nd Place - Book Cover Design

  • Steve the Zombie - Amazon U.S. Best Seller

    February 12, 2024

    'Steve the Zombie' has become a #1 U.S. Horror Fiction Best Seller on Amazon U.S.

  • Horror Writing Master Class Course

    March 2024

    To sharpen my skills, I've completed the Horror Writing Master Class by María Fernanda Ampuero.

My Books

  • Corporate Testimonials

  • "No question - it was a huge work in a record time. You did so beautiful! I would have never managed. I am very grateful to you. And I am so happy that it is done. It was unresolvable challenge for me, and you really made a miracle and brought it to life! Thank you for that!"
    — Mme. Evelina Rioukhina, United Nations, Switzerland

  • "Because Istvan is good at his job, he is always my end of the road and my last bus stop. Thank you."
    — Chigbo Ugwuoke, Institute for Career & Character Development, Nigeria

  • "Always does excellent work. His work keeps me coming back to get more jobs done. I highly recommend him."
    — Will Cravens, Endurance Leadership, United States of America

  • "Istvan has now formatted six books for me, several with many internal illustrations. He does quality work, is very fast, and he is responsive to any changes requested."
    — Ellis Potter, Destinée Media, Switzerland

  • "Near perfection. Istvan is always at the top of his game. Always delivers quality work fast. He possesses a superior intellect and, therefore, communicates beautifully. Istvan is a problem solver who I highly recommend!"
    — John Stephen Mauldin, Hardcastle Publishing, United States of America

  • "I trust Istvan one hundred percent. He has formatted many of my books and I can't say enough good things about him. The best of the best."
    — George Thomas, Fortress of the Mind Publications, United States of America

  • "First rate advice on best management practices for Amazon publishing and accurate, attractive, and prompt page layout service. Will hire again."
    — Michael E. Fraidenburg, The Cooperation Company, United States of America

  • "Istvan did the interior layout of our book. He delivered the quality one would expect from a major publishing house in New York or London."
    — Wayne & Tamara Mitchell, Third Ghost Press, United States of America

  • "A true pro. Have worked with him for years."
    — Andrea Olson, The Tiny World Company, United States of America

  • "Awesome working with Istvan. He came through and helped us meet a tough deadline while continuing to deliver an outstanding design. Top notch!"
    — Kathy Meis, Bublish Inc., United States of America

  • "Look no further for book formatting help! He's the best."
    — Iver Marjerison, FoodFlow Publications, United States of America

  • "It is always a pleasure to work with Istvan. This piece is part of a much larger project that I am confident will be completed to my satisfaction."
    — Laurie Weiss, Ph.D, Empowerment Systems Books, United States of America

  • "Fast perfection. Istvan can always get whatever I need done."
    — River Frost, Ballads and Bards Bookhouse, Australia

  • "He really cares to get it right. I have worked with him three times now and will continue. He is easy and helpful. I am particular and appreciate the support in a difficult process."
    — Marilyn Shannon, ReEnchant Planet Earth Publishing, United States of America

  • Indie Author Testimonials

  • "A patient professional who is focused, dedicated, and proficient! I would not use any other formatter. I was lucky to find him early in my Indie career."
    — Gwendolyn Cahill, United States of America

  • "Book cover design, layout, and formatting are done quickly and perfectly. You are a fantastic contractor. This is the 6th book you have done for our publishing company. Congratulations!"
    — Patrick Selvey, Kenya

  • "Fantastic! Istvan is highly recommended!"
    — Alfredo de Braganza, Spain

  • "Working with Istvan has always been an awesome experience. He's helped me so many times I've lost count! Thank you."
    — Fez McLeod, Canada

  • "Istvan is a real professional, he again delivered perfect and timely work, so giving the final touch to my new book."
    — Isidora D'Anna, Italy

  • "Wow what can I say? Istvan goes above and beyond to get things just right. I lost count of the revisions I gave him. Small things but things that were important to me."
    — Lynette Lovell, Barbados

  • "Fantastic work! It’s really admirable how you always see projects through from conception to completion."
    — Lyle Johnson, United States of America

  • "Couldn't be happier with his work. Excellent in every regard. Highly recommend."
    — A.N. Odette, Ireland

  • "Istvan is a true professional and was recommended to me by two of his former clients. He's fast, responsive, and thorough."
    — Georgeie Reynolds, United States of America

  • "Istvan delivers high-quality product fast. He's hardworking and understanding. I highly recommend him."
    — Lina Vine, Germany

  • "Istvan is exceptionally professional and reliable. It is a pleasure to work with him on projects."
    — Van Argan, United States of America

  • "Always fast and professional, and goes well above-and-beyond to make sure our work looks fantastic."
    — Avalon Robinson, United States of America

  • "Pleasant and Professional. Qualities that makes for a great finished product and building trust per the client-customer relationship."
    — Omolara Makini, United States of America

  • "Always excellent work. Formatting is perfect job and all accepted. Thanks so much."
    — Mark E. Wilkins, Ph.D, Philippines

  • "Super friendly, and very helpful."
    — Brien Feathers, Mongolia

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