descentline's Posts

No shipping to Indonesia?
Ordering and Shipping

Unfortunately, I just found out that Blurb does not ship to Indonesia. I really should have noticed this before I went to the trouble of updating my book for a client there and taking an order for 100 books. 

Now, I have to factor in the shipping costs of sending the books to me, plus the shipping and handling costs of my using a third party vendor to ship them to the client in Indonesia.

I really wanted to (and still do) believe that Blurb was a great solution for my low volume needs, but this shipping issue plus the cost of printing without the Blurb logo, the limited software capabilites and the myriad printing inconsistencies makes me have to seriously re-examine if  blurb is really a good solution for an independent book publisher like myself.  I didn’t want to spend the time and money to produce the manuscript through a traditional print house, but now it appears that that is just what I should have done. 

This is unfortunate (for me) because I think Blurb is a great concept, especially, the ability to update and personalize a book for different clients quickly and easily.  However, those clients cannot be in exotic locations like Indonesia.  I will continue to use Blurb for my few domestic clients and hope that Blurb addresses the needs of its members who ship to the greater global marketplace. 

 

 

 

Posted by
descentline
Dec 27, 2008 12:37pm PDT
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descentline
 
Problems with clipped text after importing previously designed book into...
BookSmart

I appreciate your suggestion…I tried that, but it is apparently not the problem. 

It seems as though when the software was ‘upgraded’ the algorithm used to process text changed in a way that interferes with text container size, text size or spacing.

As I look through other forum posts, I see similar concerns…this is why I believe it is an important venue for Blurb to see trends….and to drive others that have similar experience to post them for others to see.   It also save a lot of work for Blub to post an answer in the forum than to respond to individuals’ questions when they are all similar.

 However, since Blurb has not responded to my question in the forum and your generous suggestion has not addressed my particular issue, I will have to go to email support.  I’ll post the answer if I get one that works for my situation.

 

Posted by
descentline
Sep 9, 2008 7:30am PDT
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descentline
 
Problems with clipped text after importing previously designed book into...
BookSmart

Well after waiting 2 days for someone to reply in the forum…I give up.  My post must not be important enough for Blurb staff to respond to, although they have responded to others’ posts.  Blurb staff must know the answer to this question, and answering it would benefit the community.  This should not have to go through tech support.  I ask again, is there going to be a fix to this problem?

Posted by
descentline
Sep 8, 2008 4:59pm PDT
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descentline
 
Problems with clipped text after importing previously designed book into...
BookSmart

I just imported a 120 page book I did in a previous version of Blurb into the newest version 1.9.7 in order to work on a new edition.

After the importation, most of the text containers showed ‘clipped text’ errors.  Since my book is a scientific text I can’t just remove words to make the text fit, nor can I really make the text smaller as its already small.   

Why would software designers not take text to text coversion compatability into consideration before releasing a new version?  Is there going to be a solution to this basic issue?   

 

 

 

Posted by
descentline
Sep 6, 2008 7:19pm PDT
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descentline
 
Allowing the bride to preview book before purchasing?
General Interest

"...it couldn’t be easier"...well, yes if your customer can receive attachments.  Mine are lucky if they get the internet.  

Posted by
descentline
Oct 7, 2007 4:34pm PDT
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descentline
 
Allowing the bride to preview book before purchasing?
General Interest

A full book preview is also important to me. I would love to have this feature available to my clients who are located globally in remote areas…but do have internet access.

 Now, with a limited book preview that does not highlight my book sufficiently, I have to buy and distribute preview copies to remote island areas.  This is not cost effective or efficient.  If my clients could preview the book electronically and email me any changes or comments before production, it would eliminate wasted print runs and postal costs.

Fingers crossed for this feature…

 

Posted by
descentline
Oct 4, 2007 5:13pm PDT
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descentline
 
Problem with dust cover vs. book color reproduction
General Interest

An update… 

Michael at order support sent me a shipping return label to return the books for reprinting.  Only the covers needed to be reprinted, but I was asked to return the books as well.

The reprinting was done quickly and I received the books yesterday, the text on the covers matched perfectly with the title page. 

The binding was straight and the overall print quality was better than the previous print job.  Event he words on the dust jacket spine were aligned properly.

I appreciate the quickness of the resolution of this problem, since I need to take the books out of the country next week.

 I did  note a few minor issues with my order of 12 books…

The first book from which I removed the plastic wrap was inserted upside down in the dust cover.  Out of fear that the others would be similarly afflicted, I opened them all.  No others were affected.  Unfortunately, now I have to carry the books without the protective cover.

On some books the black color pages were smeared, allowing the white uncolored page to show through. This occurred at random in 4 books.  Additionally, one dust cover had a clump of something (I understand this is called a "hicky" in the printing industry) that the printer went over, obscuring the writing, during the printing process. 

I can live with these issues for this initial small order.

Thank you for great customer service.  Looking forward to placing additonal orders in the future.

Elissa 

 

 

 

Posted by
descentline
Oct 2, 2007 1:35pm PDT
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descentline
 
Maps
Tips and Tricks

I’v e found good maps on Wikipedia, with the copyright info noted by the submitter…I’d still be cautious though since Wikipedia is open source.

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Maps

 Also, the CIA World Fact Book on the web has good quality world maps that are copyright free to US citizens (so I’ve heard)

Wikipedia commons http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Main_Page also has media files for free use by anyone.

I’m looking for a free souce for custom maps….if someone has a source for that I’d be grateful.

Posted by
descentline
Sep 21, 2007 6:00pm PDT
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descentline
 
Hiccups: error closes book without saving
BookSmart

I’ve experienced this problem numerous times.  For me, it happens most often when using the keyboard commands for deleting a previous action (ctrl-alt-del) on the keyboard.  Do it too many times and the program closes, often without saving the changes. Using the delete function on the toolbar minimzes the problem.

It has also happened on other random occasions for which I have no explanation…but in no case did the actual file disappear…

Hopefully, its a bug that will be worked out with the new release :)

Posted by
descentline
Sep 18, 2007 7:18pm PDT
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descentline
 
dust jacket print does not look like the last ones
General Interest

Hi Mary,

See my post entitled, "Problem with dust cover vs. book color reproduction" from a few days ago.  It sounds like we have the same problem.    I’d suggest that you also contact "order support"..

 Elissa Mayo

descentline@cox.net

Posted by
descentline
Sep 9, 2007 8:13am PDT
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descentline
 
Problem with dust cover vs. book color reproduction
General Interest

I previously ordered 1 copy of my book to proof.  In a past post on the forum, I complimented Blurb on the perfect job.  The book was great. I and everyone I showed it to loved it.  All of the errors I found were mine and were corrected before placing a larger order of the book.

I just received my larger order and although most of the book was good, I noticed a few problems that I didn’t have during the last printing.  I used aqua blue (H 180, S 180, B 84) in the title and some headers on the dust jacket and most pages of the book. This color was chosen to match colors in the cover photograph (a Peacock flounder with blue spots if you are curious)...The aqua blue color inside of the book matched ok, but the dust cover printed as a completely different blue and giving the cover an overall bluish cast.  There is obviously a printer calibration or other issue with the dust cover printer. 

I have contacted Blurb through the order support form (case # <font size="2">070907-000079) </font>and hope this can be resolved.  I really love the overall quality, but this is a glaring, noticible error when you open the book to the title page and the two colors are so "off"... I am taking these books to Indonesia in October and hope this can be resolved before then…and before I place my next larger order when I return.

One last comment I forgot to add when I filled out the order support form…the shipping box the books came packed in had only a small amount of paper stuffing for packing material.  Some of the books are crushed at the corners…better packing material would hopefully solve this problem for larger orders…and I noticed differences in the binding quality of this printer vs. the printer of my first "proof" book.  The quality is not bad, but it is not as good (tight, straight etc.) as the previous book. 

 Curious if anyone else has experienced the same issues… 

 Book:  Muck—Life at the Bottom (All proceeds donated to ocean research, conservation and education)

Elissa

 

Posted by
descentline
Sep 8, 2007 8:29am PDT
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descentline
 
Book preview
General Interest

Please consider adding the ability for the author to decide which pages should be included in the book preview or adding a "random page" generator preview.

The first 15 pages of my book are not representative of the contents of the book…These pages are just an introduction, but don’t highlight the photography that occurs from pages 16-120.

 Thanks,

Elissa

Posted by
descentline
Aug 31, 2007 11:50am PDT
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descentline
 
New Bookstore Categories
General Interest

Please consider increasing the number of categories to the bookstore.

One in particular, "nature" seems to be missing.  Some of the other categories are disproportionately filled while others only have a few entries.

 

Thanks

Elissa

 

Posted by
descentline
Aug 31, 2007 11:46am PDT
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descentline
 
Wedding photo book-need your insight!!!!
Tips and Tricks

I’d love to see some of photos converted to sepia, some to grey scale and some color corrected (take them to a professional if you don’t want to mess with PhotoShop or other photo editior.. 

Insert these on colored backgrounds  to offet the sepia and greyscale photos, Use neutral backgrounds (black or white) for the color photos.  This gives the photos a historical feel and sense of placement.  Use simple non-orante fonts in black or white to write your vows throughout the book and add quotes from guests or the minister.  If you have copies of your program, napkins, or anything else, you can take photos today, propertly colored, and insert them.  It would also be nice to take a picture today of your hands and rings today to add to the back of the book as a watermark…sort of a nod to the future.. . 

But…Basically, anything you do for this book is going to show how much your marriage means so have fun !

 

 

Posted by
descentline
Aug 31, 2007 9:48am PDT
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descentline
 
Received first book
General Interest

I just received my first printed book and was blown away by the quality of the printing, binding, professional appearance…and it even smells like a book!  I have to say, I was proud to hold it and say, "I did this." 

I started out to make a photo book…no big deal, but after starting the process decided I’d try to make a technical marine species identification book…something I’ve always wanted to do.  The text and photo layouts, though limited at this time, offered a perfect opportunity for me to compose the stories and photos in a professional way.  After 2 months of research, proofreading and squinting at my laptop my book was done and off to print.  Sure there are only 7 other people that will only want a book on the sealife that lives at the bottom of Lembeh Strait Indonesia, but because of Blurb those 7 people will receive a copy of the only book of its kind, and I have the satisfaction that I increased my and their knowledge in the process.

Looking forward to uploading my second and third books this month.

Cheers,

Elissa

Posted by
descentline
Aug 12, 2007 9:18am PDT
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descentline
 
Possible to order extra copy of dust jacket only?
General Interest

It would be good too if we could order 2 dust jackets at the time of the original order…so many people handle the book while on display for ordering, that I fear the cover will get worn.  It would be nice to have a spare…

Elissa

Current book:  Muck- Life at the bottom

Posted by
descentline
Aug 12, 2007 9:00am PDT
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descentline