Tag Archives: blog

Self-Publishing: The Natural Evolution of Scrapbooking

This article from the New York Times gives a nice little summary of the various personal publiching services out there on the Internet. From the way this article reads, book making sounds like the next natural evolution of scrapbooking. I certainly do like it … much better than scrapbooking. It’s quicker and cheaper.


Blog 2 Book Expt. 4: Google’s Blog 2 Print (Beta)

For users of Google’s Blogger service, Google Blog 2 Print is drop Dead Simple to use.  Unfortunately, the resulting book is very expensive, starting at $29.95 for a 20-page hard cover book.

I found Google Blog 2 Print by searching “blog to print book” in a Google search window.  Of course, the Google service came up first.  So I clicked on it.  After doing this, the service presented me with a choice:  move straight ahead to purchase a book or take the web service for a test drive.  I decided to take a test drive so I entered in the address of one of my Blogger blogs — you know the one.  I also uploaded a cover image to use and entered that I wanted all of entries to be used (the tool also has a way to input a date range) and then pushed “next.”  Within 2 or 3-mins the web service presented me with a preview of my book and asked if I wanted to personalize it.  I did and then it was at this point that the program prompted me to register as a user.  Once I registered, I was taken to a nother easy to use tool that allowed me to either choose a pre-rendered cover or to upload my own.  I chose a suitable pre-rendered cover and moved on to do a full preview of the finished booked.  Satisfied with my creation, I purchased 1 softcover book.  The whole process took me less than 10-mins.  It should arrive here on November 27th.  I’ll let you know how it turns out.  The cost was pretty steep, though, at $29.95 for a 40-page soft bound book.

Oh, it looks like you can’t sell your book to the public through this service.  It’s purely a vanity service.

Blog 2 Book Expt. 2: Lulu.com

This time I try to turn my external world blog into a book via lulu.com and in one afternoon I have successfully created a book.  Am I now a legitimate published author?

I heard about lulu a few months ago through reading the booksmashup F2 blog.  After crashing and burning on Blurb, I decided to give lulu a try.  Again the process begins by registering with lulu.  I noticed in the menu, transforming a blog to a book was not explicitly listed.  I chose to make a hardcovered book.  Lulu then gave me a choice of sizes, 6×9 inches or ~8x~10 inches.  I chose the smaller format.  Lulu then opened an upload dialog box and suggested that the user change the page size to 6×9-inch in whatever editor the user is going to use.  This was actually rather nice.  Instead of re-inventing the wheel and giving the user a text editor, lulu uses a file the user provides.  Blogger is nice in that it allows you to copy and paste text from a blog, without taking the sides of the blog space with it.  This made for swift cutting and pasting of my entire blog into MS Word.  From there I was able to reformat my entire blog in 3 mouse clicks:  select all –> font Arial –> size 10.  I added in a few lines between entries and did a little proofreading (the proofreading actually took the better part of the afternoon) to complete my book file.

Uploading was pain free.  After I uploaded it, lulu tranformed my creation into a 2 up layout ready for the printing press.  The only place the processed hiccuped was during the creation of the cover, which was done using an online tool through Lulu.  It took about 10-minutes for the tool to fully load and once it did load, it worked very smoothly.  I created a simple cover and send it to print.  After this, lulu allowed me to adjust my book availability, set my intellectual propetry settings, and setting my pricing.  Yes, now the whole world can buy my lousy book for $20.97 hardcover ($5 goes to me) or $3.75 download ($3.00 goes to me).  The book is searchable, but you can’t actually buy the book because I’ve set some permissions for access.  A second edition will be published from home and put out to the public to see if anyone actually buys it.

I ordered a couple of copies of my new book.  I’ll let you all know how it comes out when then arrive.