my book has arrived

It arrived Friday in the post ... my first published book that is!

From submission on the blurb website to arriving at my door was six days. I was kept informed on the progress by updates on their website and US Postal Services until it left SFO for YVR. From end-to-end, the process has been seamless and without a hitch.

This was a bit of a blind-faith process for me as I had never published a book before and wasn't completely sure what to expect. One of my objectives was to go through the complete process fairly quickly to see what the end product actually looked like in my hands. And the end product lives up to what they advertise and exceeded my expectations.

Not only does blurb produce a quality product, they also provide a quality, seamless process.

I started Friday creating my account and building my blurb profile, downloading and installing the software. After selecting the photos I wanted to use and exporting them from Lightroom in the size needed, I spent about six hours Saturday designing "Lost Lagoon". I decided to use one of the supplied templates, modifying it until I was happy with the previewed result. After the final preview I uploaded the end product, built a blurb page for the book and ordered one copy. I watched it go through printing for two days then another four days shipping until it arrived in my post Friday morning, one week later.

The end product is amazing! This is a small book of ten pages or twenty photos, but the textured hardcover, stitched binding and glossy outer cover (made from heavy grade paper) are professional quality.

Halftone screen used in high-quality CMYK printingThe images are high-quality screened prints which means that under a magnifying glass, you can see the colour dots and patterns that result from the halftone-screen process. At reading distances the result is very high quality. To see what the halftone screen looks like, take any over-the-counter colour magazine and look at a uniform part of an image under a magnifying glass. You'll see a diagonal screen-like pattern made up of the primary colours used in printing; cyan, magenta, yellow, and black (CMYK).

There are some goofs but they are minor;

  • the john bishop images logo isn't quite right,
  • the font on the inside cover flaps isn't quite right.

The biggest lesson is that more of a border is needed around the subject in the photograph. There are a couple of pages where the subject is either clipped or disappears into the binding. The clipping I saw in the preview but it didn't register. The binding issue I would only have seen once I had the book in my hands.

Next steps? I think I will produce a second edition of this themed book in a different format and with more photographs. This means I have to scour my library a bit deeper, but I know the end result will be more than worth it.

More soon.

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