AnnetteJones's Posts

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Can I make a book from PDFs I just have but didn't make myself?
PDF to Book

I have no experience of PDF, so please bear with me! I have made several Blurb books the usual way, so I know how that works.

What I have is a set of PDF articles for a conference – they expect attendees to print them out themselves and are not going to provide hard copies. So I of course thought of Blurb! So can I just shove these PDFs into BookSmart or something as the contents and design my own cover? Or it just all too horribly difficult to contemplate and I should just hit the home printer and buy a ringbinder?

The conference is in 3.5 weeks so I don’t have time to learn new software!

Thanks for reading and for any help!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jul 14, 2010 5:25am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Book commenting feature in the works. Tell us what you think.
Web Features

Good idea!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jul 8, 2009 10:00am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
rotating text
Book Design and Imaging

One way would be to create a layout based on one of those which have vertical text, such as some of the title pages. I haven’t tried it myself yet, but was planning to.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jun 10, 2009 11:53am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
clipped text warning
General Interest

Of course now you can just edit the layout and make the box bigger!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jun 9, 2009 6:43am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Editing indent margins in BookSmart
BookSmart

I found I had to use spaces, counting the same each time. Oh yes, it WAS very tedious! I hope they fix it!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jun 9, 2009 6:33am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Booksmart 2 is great!
BookSmart

There seem to be mostly negative comments on here about the new version. I assume everyone who is happy with it is busy playing with it! I just thought I’d start a thread which was more positive.

 I love being able to alter layouts and make my own. I find the way of doing it really intuitive and figured it out very quickly. I am excited about being able to do some of the things I needed to be able to do to make some projects which were not working on the old version. Thank you all so much, blurb team!!

 Of course it’s not perfect, there are a few minor niggles which I hope can get sorted or worked around. I sent some suggestions in about those. But mostly I wanted to say how much of a relief it is to just be able to make some text boxes that little bit bigger! And then of course to have the freedom to put things anywhere on the page I want! Fantastic!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Jun 9, 2009 6:32am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
More control over templates
Book Design and Imaging

What frustrates me most is the pathetically small sizes of many text boxes which is quite unnecessary as they are surrounded by vast areas of blank space! Why can’t they be bigger please? I’d love greater control over them but in the meantime could some of those layouts be changed so the text box is bigger please? People who want a small amount of text there can still have it just by not putting so much in and using tab, space and return to move it to the desired location within the larger box. Also, I’d like more picture on picture layouts or ideally the ability to use my own picture as a background.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Mar 2, 2009 7:57am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Are pics taken with iPhone good enough, and if so what size?
Book Design and Imaging

As I understand it, the problem with images from phones is more the poor quality of lenses. The resolution is fine. My old camera had similar megapixels and the images came out really well.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Mar 2, 2009 7:50am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Full screen image template with text on bottom
BookSmart

There is a format like what you want, but it is hiding in quotation layouts. It is a full bleed picture with a large text box, although the text box is not quite as large as the one with borders but not a lot smaller.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Feb 24, 2009 7:32am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Please upgrade this forum ever so slightly!
Web Features

Thanks Tony – found it now, would never have found it without your comment though!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Dec 20, 2008 6:20am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Please upgrade this forum ever so slightly!
Web Features

I use internet explorer, dunno what version, hubby deals with that but we recently got the patch to fix that hole so I assume it’s up to date. I think it’s win xp, certainly not vista!

When I right click in this message I get an option to select all, and an option to copy background, but not a normal copy. If I select all and right click there is still no copy option. Unless it is copy background??

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Dec 19, 2008 2:45pm PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
How Long Does It Take YOU to design a book?
Book Design and Imaging

How long is a piece of string?!

My first book, of poems and photos, took a few days to put together, but I had a lot of material which was just begging to go in a book and didn’t need much tweaking. I did no post-processing on the pictures and was very happy with them.

Others have taken longer, except my MA which took a couple of hours because it was text, althrough I threw in a few pix for interest. Did have to rejig the formatting quite a bit, but still quick. Actually I just got that yesterday and am really chuffed! Looks very professional!

I found the software easy to learn and use although somewhat restricting and frustrating. I have been quite happy to use Booksmart to resize my pix generally, unless they need a more accurate or dramatic crop. I never really understood why some people feel the need to resize pix to the exact spec as I have been very happy with the results from just throwing in pix of all sizes, from my old 2mp camera or my new 10mp one. For my first book I never even found the zoom tool! But that was all with my old camera and I could frame my pix with that – the new camera is wide-angle so I have to crop to frame pix far more now.

Glennaa – I agree that moving pix within the frame using the mouse is horribly annoying, but they can also be moved with the cursors – far more accurate.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Dec 16, 2008 1:48pm PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Please upgrade this forum ever so slightly!
Web Features

So I just spent a while replying to a post. I am aware that an overlong reply gets cut off and I did not want to lose the end of my post. So I tried to copy it just in case that happened. For some reason this is not possible. Then I noticed the ‘preview’ button. ‘Ah!’ I thought ‘this might help – I can check if my post is too long or not!’ So I pressed the button. The post looked fine. So I pressed post. My post did not appear and there was a stupid message saying ‘easy tiger’. So through trying to avoid losing part of my post I lost the whole blipping thing!!!!!

 Also the forum is really slow to load and to move between pages.

 Please make it possible to copy the message one is about to post in case of crashes or lenght or other issues.

Please do something about the whole preview/post problem – if there had been any kind of warning one could not post after previewing it might have helped!

It would be nice not to have a length restriction anyway.

Thanks for the Blurb product though! Still loving it.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Dec 16, 2008 1:38pm PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Text shifts from left to right boxes
Book Design and Imaging

I think a similar problem with the columns of text moving around is discussed in the booksmart thread ‘text slippage’ where the problem was solved by copy/ pasting from notepad. I don’t know how to put a link in the thread, but its near the top at the moment.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 21, 2008 7:01am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Our BookSmart 1.9.9 release is all about our new 5x8 B/W Text option
BookSmart

In the faqs is some info about what page size to set word to for importation [it does import if you don’t do this coz I didn’t] but I assume this gives word the same dimensions as the blurb book pages? Please correct me if I’m wrong someone! If it does, then you can see how many pages it will be.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 21, 2008 6:57am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Have Layouts been added in any recent revisions?
BookSmart

A really simple improvement to cover templates I think would be to not link front and back covers etc, so you can select what front cover you want and then choose any back cover to go with it! I have found some frustration with wanting the front from one template with the back from another. But the best would be to allow free positioning of text boxes and pic boxes of course!

Also I think one or two of the templates are duplicates. If you look carefully at each one, and I don’t mean between categories as I know there are some templates in more than one category, but there was one I found where a template from high on the list seemed identical to one further down the list. I may have missed something, but they seemed truly identical, not that one had no header or something subtle like that. Kind of frustrating when there are loads of templates I don’t need but ones I want are missing…

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 21, 2008 6:51am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Copying Text from a word document
Book Design and Imaging

Booksmart does not handle first line indent, only whole paragraph indent. I found that a drag as well and had to manually go through my book adding spaces at the beginning of each and every paragraph! That was the only way I found to do it, since tab is not reliable, sometimes producing gaps of different sizes.

I don’t know so much about the text size issue, as I was unaware you could have part sizes. I would asume Booksmart would only allow whole sizes. It is not good at resizing text, since you can only select one page worth of text at a time [if anyone knows a way round this, please share!] so I would suggest making your text size 10 in word and importing like that rather than try to resize in Booksmart.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 21, 2008 6:41am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Great Book Great Service!
General Interest

It so is addictive! But better for you than many addictions, except the late nights and backache when you just want to get the next few pages perfect and don’t notice time passing…

I have serious book addiction anyway and this being able to make your own is just another facet of it! I love Blurb!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 9:25am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Bugs in 1.9?
General Interest

I got that problem too Irishh. I solved it by exporting to my desktop then moving it from there onto my flash drive – it seemed to work though I haven’t checked as such.

Evelivesey – you can drag photos direct from the thumbnails in the windows file and drop them in either the ‘my imported photos’ box’ or into the photo box on the page you want the picture, just avoid the ‘get photos’ method. It’s quicker anyway!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 9:20am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Why so highly priced?
General Interest

More to the point, did you use the right format within Blurb? It looks likely you used the 8"x10" format, which is intended for pictures primarily, rather than the brand new b+w text format, which would be a fraction of the cost. 124 pages in that format, soft cover, would be 5.95 euros, plus post and packing, although if as the page size is smaller you might find you needed a few more pages in that format.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 9:16am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Moving Text Boxes
Tips and Tricks

The indenting in Blurb is not just for the first line of a paragraph though – it indents every line, which is not very useful to my mind. As many books have indent first line, which I think is what cosmos10 wanted as well, it would be nice if Booksmart did this. The only way I could acheive the effect, very tediously I might add, was by manually adding spaces to the first line of every paragraph! I couldn’t even use tab because the gap created was far too large.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 8:59am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Poetry book authors -- your help requested
Book Design and Imaging

Hi Mapletree,

I have done a couple of poetry books, but I prefer to design my own pages than use the templates. Personally I see nothing wrong with varying formats as long as they work for the poem and for the look of the double page spread. So I would use 1-column rather than have my poem go over a page when I didn’t want it to. I have some poems spread over 4 pages in my latest [as yet unpublished] book, I generally assume people will turn the page, especially if the poem did not seem finished, and they will know if it is a continution of the poem by a similar look and the lack of a title. If it’s a new poem it will have a title and sometimes a different format, occasionally even a different font.

Poems are very personal, your poems are your own and only you can know if they look how you want them to. Although poetry has rules, sometimes it is the breaking of the rules that makes a poem stand out. So try different looks, you can always change them back. Be brave and bold! And remember, this is YOUR book of YOUR poems and if you want tham to look a certain way that’s up to YOU, nobody can tell you it’s wrong, just that they don’t like it. If you like it then that’s all you need to know. Of course as long as you can achieve that look within the confines of Booksmart…!

Good luck and happy poeting!

Annette.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 8:43am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Formatting text
Book Design and Imaging

Tony,

 thank you so much for that fix! I had no idea there was a way round it and had just got used to it as one of the many foibles of Booksmart. How fantastic to have one less thing to frustrate me!

Annette.

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 18, 2008 8:30am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Our BookSmart 1.9.9 release is all about our new 5x8 B/W Text option
BookSmart

No, I found out what went wrong! It changed the layout. They were in the very large picture but not full bleed with a large text box over it, but they changed to the full bleed with a large text box over it, but that text box is slightly smaller than the other one. So that’s what happened, but it isn’t supposed to!

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 11, 2008 7:25am PDT
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AnnetteJones
 
Our BookSmart 1.9.9 release is all about our new 5x8 B/W Text option
BookSmart

Well, I finished and uploaded that project, then returned to an older one, a book of poems where some of the text is on top of the pictures in a nice shape, following the lines of the picture. What has the new version done to this?! I thought it would be OK as the poems are all on separate pages and don’t flow between pages. But no! I don’t even understand how it has gone wrong to correct it! Have the text boxes been made slightly smaller?

So I was trying to correct one which had sent a couple of lines onto the next page where previously it had all fitted on the one page [one line maybe, but 2? odd] and as I was deleting bits of space to get them back, the formatting of some earlier lines changed so it no longer lined up with the shape of the picture, so I did undo and then it crashed so I sent the error report. Then opened up and tried again, the formatting had corrected, but there was still a lone on the next page, so I do the same thing to bring it back, the formatting goes wrong again, I press undo and the formatting does not revert, I press undo again, still wrong, then there are no more undos!!! So my poem has just gone horrible. I see why some people are having trouble! I do have backups on the laptop and could just send those from another computer, it’s not the end of my world or anything, just weird. And annoying. But mostly I don’t understand it, did the text boxes really shrink or what?

Posted by
AnnetteJones
Nov 11, 2008 7:22am PDT
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AnnetteJones

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