Blurb: Making Layouts And Book Publishing Easy
This is the third application of our series on book publishing. For a primer on the topic, there is our first post: Online Publishing With Web 2.0.
Seeing Blurb for the first time, it’s hard to ignore the fluid and clean design of the site. From their opening pages to their marketplace with its Flash previews of books, the impression is that Blurb will take good care of your project.
Publishing with Blurb is handled though Blurb BookSmart, which is downloadable software (PC or Mac) that can be used to compile your images and text in a size and format that Blurb can print from. Text, images, and layout are combined in an easy-to-use layout program on your desktop, then uploaded to Blurb for printing. Looking at publications made already, BookSmart does a good job of it, yet looking at the fine print, some users – design oriented ones – may find the formats stifling. Doc, the format of Word, jpg and png are the only acceptable formats, which means that aspiring authors who want to generate files from graphic programs such as inDesign will not be able to bring their layouts to print.
The benefit to Blurb is that the layout software is easy for a majority of users, and with drag and drop function, templates, backgrounds, and borders, users can get a custom product that they know will work with Blurb. To add to that, Blurb hosts a marketplace – a bookstore – to showcase and sell your book. Badges and graphic links to your web pages are also available to bring potential buyers into the bookstore. Sales tracking and metrics for your books are also available.
Blurb offers a number of formats, from landscape, portrait, large format in color or black and white. Hardcover, softcover, and premium paper are also available. Blurb does not offer coil binding (only perfect), but does offer image-wrapped hardcovers (image printed directly to cover). Prices are competitive to comparable products and the least expensive option, the black and white text soft cover starts at $4.95.
To find this and other applications like it there is the Listio search: books+publish.
Listio Profile: http://www.listio.com/web20/app/Blurb/
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