A reader from CA has told me that last year, She and her daughter published their first co-authored blook from BlogBinders.com
, which is Francisco based company founded in 2003.
Below is their self-publishing experience -
BlogBinders.com internally uses CafePress.com
, and you can see it at times. For example, you need to create two accounts, and you will get emails from both services. Also, the package arrives in CafePress.com wrapping. This makes it look as if BlogBinder is riding on the back of someone else’s service.
However, BlogBinders understands different blogging packages – LiveJournal, Blogger.com, TypePad, Movable Type, WordPress and others – and spares you the hassle of figuring out how to convert this into a book. CafePress only accept PDF files at that time. So instead of turning blog into a PDF yourself, you just simply tell BlogBinders which blogging software you use. In our case, I had been using TypePad, and my daughter was using Blogger from Google.
You will now be able to edit the book online and reformat some passages or delete blocks of text. You can then continue to choose font and cover styling. There aren’t many options at the moment, so we went for a rather traditional font. I insisted to go for the highest-quality printing – the price is still fair enough to pay. After you configured the settings, you can render a preview PDF which will be displayed right in the browser. All of these steps worked flawlessly for us.
And then, you send the book to print. After BlogBinders checks your configuration and approves your book, it will be shipped to you.
The table of contents works nicely and is separated into the different years and months for easy access now that actual Google-like search functionality will be lost. Our book has little over 150 pages, and covers a selected few articles from around one year of blogging between me and my daughter.
Not all things which work online work offline, naturally. My daughter was careful to select only bigger articles, and those with a simpler style. Tables, illustrations, any kind of advanced formatting, will be lost when BlogBinders converts your blog. Links will also be lost, of course, but you can keep the link text – it pays off if in the past you avoided “click here” non-semantics. Before we would ever consider selling it, we would need to edit it, too, which would consist of both proof-reading and making sure web-specifics translated well.
Overall, the experience is more labor intensive than we originally thought, but well worth it !