Using Blurb, The First All-In-One Platform to Self-Publish Your Books
Found In: Books
In some point of our lives, we were compelled to write down what we felt, taking in the satisfaction in seeing our thoughts materialize in ink. Such is the appeal of a journal. There is the universal need to write one’s experiences. In fact, history only started when events were written. Writing is not only enjoyable but also catharthic and liberating. For those who want to go further in writing, having one’s own book is the pinnacle of every writer’s dream.
Being able to write one’s own book may already be a daunting task. Getting it published is different story. Publication has various sub-steps that would literally take a small army to proof-read, assemble, print, and publish a book.
With today’s technology and innovation, authors, both aspiring and seasoned can rejoice as this innovative company takes most the cost and chore of publishing a book.
Blurb is Born
In 2006, Eileen Gittins introduced Blurb, the first system for creating, printing, and publishing independent books. Having being discouraged before to pusblish her own photography book because of cost prohibitions, Ellen came up with the idea of creating a platform that will serve as a one-stop station for aspiring and current authors to publish their own book.
Blurb helps you make your book with their online tools—no matter what genre, be it graphic novels, photo-books, cookbooks, home-improvement books, children’s books, etc. They can print just one book for you or a thousand, there is no limit nor contract nor feasibility studies if the publisher thinks your work is marketable or “good enough” to be published. This is the closest to liberalization in publishing.
“Because if you can think it, dream it.“ goes a tagline of Blurb and indeed, it delivers on its promise. Since its launch, they have published over two-million books, with a new one in the works every minute.
Blurb’s Essential Tools
Blurb uses different online tools for users to get started no matter the skill level. The tools are integrated with some social-media sites and with already established photo-editing and creation tools such as Adobe® InDesign® and Lightroom®. Their flagship tool, BookWright, lets the author design and print a bookstore-quality, professional-looking book and publish it online. It is not limited to printed materials either. Publishing e-books is also the company’s especiality.
Blurb puts the author in control. From how you make and design your book, to how you market it either through Amazon or in the Blurb™ Bookstore, to how you promote it through social media, the tools are optimized with the author in mind.
Blurb’s flaship tool, BookSmart, has a novice-friendly design interface that let you choose from professionally designed layouts or choose to create your own. Here, you can add themes, personalize some images, and mix and match page designs to your liking.
With BookSmart, you can make almost any kind of book you can imagine – planners, photo books, text-only books, notebooks, portfolios, etc. Here, you can also make hardcover or softcover books in several sizes. You can choose from different paper types and different linen cover options. You can work either online or offline with BookSmart. Since your work-in-progress is saved and stored in your local computer, you can work on it anywhere and at your convenient time. Once uploaded to Blurb’s system for ordering, you can also check your book online as it will be in it’s database.
Blurb has an impressive trail of recognition from the press. Publisher’s Weekly, USA Today, George Eastman House, Vator News, Tampa Bay Times, Good eReader, and Guardian to name a few.
Ready to Pubish? Here’s How To Get Started
To get started with Blurb, you need to download the free BookSmart software at http://www.blurb.com/booksmart-download and click the download button. You then complete a registration page. Depending on your browser settings, the file may start to download automatically or you may be asked to save the download somewhere else. After the download, locate the installer you downloaded and double-click to start the installation process. For additional photo-editing needs, as Adobe® InDesign® and Lightroom® are available for free.
If you need help from professional bookmarkers, you can consult with BlurbNation. It is a community of expert bookmakers that is available for hire to help you in making your books. Here, you can find a directory where you can find a writer, graphic artist, layout expert, custom bookmaker, editor, and other professionals when you need expertise.
After you are satisfied with the content and look of your book, Blurb directs you on how to market your finished product through online vendors. Give you have the proper size of book, you have the choice to list your book for sale on Amazon or on the Blurb online market. It is also your discretion to set the selling price. If you want to publish an e-book, Apple iBooks is also an available option to sell it.
Traditionally, you cannot print a book unless you have met the publishing house’s set minimum. With Blurb, that is not a problem – you can print a single book for a price of one single book.
The Price is Right
The price for publishing a book through Blurb depends mainly on the size and paper quality of the material you choose and the availment of extra service/s and premium option/s. Since the tools are free and the author is in charge of its usage, the complexity of tasks in editing your material does not have a bearing on price.
Because of the amount of use and service you get from just one platform, Blurb’s pricing are cheap compared to the price of going through regular publishing houses. If you can afford more, you can choose to avail of their premium options such as Custom Logo Upgrade, ProLine End Sheets, and ProLine End Linens. These add a premium feel to your finished book. For authors who want to publish in bulk, they give discounts from 15% to 20% off.
Empowerment and freedom for writers. This is what is Blurb is about. This company has started a movement that is literally making each writer’s dream come true.