owen-b's Posts

Square book layout - 'split horizontally, full bleed' is there, but no ...
BookSmart

Thank you – that’s a solution that’s possible but not very practical when I’d like all 100+ pages to be in this format. It shouldn’t be this way and I’m very curious to know why they removed/forgot to add the design to the template.

Posted by
owen-b
May 7, 2008 2:53am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Square book layout - 'split horizontally, full bleed' is there, but no ...
BookSmart

Pretty much as per thread title! In the small square book there doesn’t seem to be an option to have two photos cover the whole page, split vertically in two. The option to do this but split horizontally is there, but that’s not what I need! Both options are present in the next size book up, however.

Any ideas why?

Posted by
owen-b
May 5, 2008 4:13pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Layouts not accurately built?
BookSmart

Okay, I just updated to the most current version, and it doesn’t fix the issue I mention above.

Posted by
owen-b
Apr 22, 2008 9:45am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Layouts not accurately built?
BookSmart

Does this update also fix layouts WITHIN the book? Here’s 3 pics (hopefully) that show my experience:

http://myglasseye.net/stuff/booksmart/Picture1.png

http://myglasseye.net/stuff/booksmart/Picture2.png

http://myglasseye.net/stuff/booksmart/Picture3.png

Posted by
owen-b
Apr 22, 2008 9:26am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Why does Booksmart show the word 'Blank' under some of my filled layouts?
BookSmart

I’ve added a bunch of new pages at the end of a book I’m making and for some reason even though they are now full with photos, the word ‘Blank’ appears both under the page number in the ‘page browser’ in the bottom of the window, and also in the actual page preview window, under the page itself.

Shows in both edit and preview mode. Any ideas why?

Posted by
owen-b
Apr 22, 2008 9:04am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
10x8 Hardback - okay, but scruffy 'edges', white central stripe between ...
Book Printing

They emailed me back and offered me another reprint from the USA this time (as the printers there seem to be better) or I could wait a while until they get their European printers up to scratch. Alternatively they offered me a coupon for the full cost of my order to spend on another format if I wanted.

I wrote back and asked why I couldn’t have my actual money back as two faulty orders in a row certainly merited that, and they did actually issue a refund to me. I don’t really understand why they don’t do refunds anyway, especially if you can prove photographically that your order is below standard.

They do seem to be genuinely upset that their product isn’t reaching muster, although they say it’s only a small percentage of orders overall. However, when two products in a row come to me faulty that doesn’t seem like chance but more like a below-standard printing process. I won’t be ordering any hardback books from Blurb in Europe for many months, because even though Blurb say they’re working hard at eradicating these problems from their suppliers (and thank me for showing them evidence of the problems) they also admit it may take a few weeks to iron them out in practice.

I redesigned my book into three smaller volumes and ordered softback versions of them to test the quality. If they’re okay I’ll finally be able to offer them for sale through the International Set Your Price scheme… Fingers crossed!

Posted by
owen-b
Mar 1, 2008 3:33am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
10x8 Hardback - okay, but scruffy 'edges', white central stripe between ...
Book Printing

My reprint jsut arrived 20 minutes ago and it’s TERRIBLE.

The paper slip cover has been printed with a green colour tint, inexplicably. Hideous.

The glue is even worse – it fell open on the first viewing at a page where the glue binding had actually cracked and the pages were falling out already. Later in the book it’s uneven and pages don’t fall open properly.

The white gutter is still perfectly evident, which shouldn’t be there.

Finally, despite coming via UPS in a brown cardboard carton, one corner was bashed.

Utterly appalling and I’ll not be using Blurb for a hardcover ever again, nor for a book of that size. I want my next reprint in softcover because that’s all I can think of that would solve the glueing and gutter problem, but somehow I doubt it.

Really annoyed I wasted my time making my book in Blurb’s software and it won’t even let me export it to another application for editing. I’ll have to totally remake the whole bl**dy thing in some other, reliable company’s software.

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 27, 2008 3:08am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
10x8 Hardback - okay, but scruffy 'edges', white central stripe between ...
Book Printing

I should also add that Blurb wanted me to send them photos of the problem, which I duly did, so either they didn’t believe me or they are genuinely chasing these problems down at their printers.

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 22, 2008 1:00pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
10x8 Hardback - okay, but scruffy 'edges', white central stripe between ...
Book Printing

I wrote to customer services asking NOT to be issued a reprint until they could confirm what had gone wrong and they instantly issued a completely free reprint. Hmm. I suspect this may have been a waste of their time because I can’t see a reprint fixing these issues, which appear to me to be something their printers are going to do every time, not just every now and then.

I also suspect that Softbacks will remedy the issue of both the white central gutter and the appalling glue, which is a shame but not a deal breaker.

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 22, 2008 12:59pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
10x8 Hardback - okay, but scruffy 'edges', white central stripe between ...
Book Printing

I got my 10×8 hardback 174-page photobook yesterday and my initial impressions were that it was fab – the picture colours turned out great although for some reason I got the feeling there was the TINIEST bit of softness to them, not as sharp as they seem on my screen. However, I often experience that in prints, probably because I don’t view them in as bright light as my LCD iMac screen displays them.

Aside from that, two big negatives struck me. With the book closed, looking at the three edges of the paper that are on display (ie, top, outside, bottom), they seem a bit dirty – not pure white, not grey, not black, but smudgy and streaky. This doesn’t carry into the balck pages inside, but suggests wet pages being cut or something. It doesn’t give a good impression.

The other thing is that between each double page, where the page is glued, the black page turns white about 1mm before the central glue area, resulting in a prominent 2mm white stripe down the centre of each double spread. Not noticeable on a normal white paged book, but hideous on double spreads or coloured pages.

Finally, looking at it in more detail today, certain pages are falling open more easily, not because I’ve been looking at the more, but because the glue is uneven from top to bottom and in several cases the bottom 5mm or so of a page isn’t glued in at all.

Overall, I’m hesitant to order again, but nobody else I like the look of does 174 pages.

Any news on stitching these books? Or losing the white stripe? Or doing a better glue?

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 19, 2008 6:10pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Suggestion: On the Blurb website page for each book, can you change the ...
Web Features

Hi Blurb,

When I made my photobook, I designed the front cover so that it read ‘Photography by [my name]’. However, on your website the byline section reads ‘By photography by [my name]’ which is pretty clunky.

Can you re-design the webpage so that the first ‘By’ doesn’t appear, thereby matching the book cover? You don’t have ‘Title’ and ‘Subtitle’ on the page, so I’m sure you could drop the ‘By’... :)

Cheers!
Owen

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 7, 2008 11:43pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Is it possible to upload a book to Blurb and NOT order one?
Ordering and Shipping

AH forget it, just realised you STILL can’t set this up outside the UK. Also, on my 175 page book it will actually cost more to have it delivered reliably and reasonably quickly than it will to actually have the blooming thing printed.

Unbelievably disappointing. :(

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 7, 2008 10:37pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Is it possible to upload a book to Blurb and NOT order one?
Ordering and Shipping

Hiya,

Probably answered elsewhere, but I’ve totally missed it – can I upload my completed book to the Blurb website and NOT order one? I will be doing a wedding and making a book for everyone that would like to buy one, but I don’t want to order one myself. Is it free to upload the book to the server and leave it there for customers to browse and order themselves?

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 7, 2008 2:20pm PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Average shipping time to UK?
Ordering and Shipping

Hi,

Decided it’s not worth the risk and am going for a Photobox book on this occasion instead. Will still be using Blurb but this would have been my first order and I need to test them out first before I order something so important!

Cheers for the replies though.

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 6, 2008 2:37am PDT
Permalink
owen-b
 
Average shipping time to UK?
Ordering and Shipping

Hi there,

I was considering making a small softback book, about 10-15 pages, for my girlfriend for Valentine’s Day – however judging by some of the threads about delivery time I suspect that given it probably wouldn’t be ready to upload until next Tuesday (5th) there’s very little chance indeed of it arriving BEFORE the 14th (Thursday of the next week) – in fact it seems unlikely that it will even have been printed by that time.

Would that be a correct assumption to make?

Cheers,
Owen

Posted by
owen-b
Feb 2, 2008 12:19am PDT
Permalink
owen-b