Thursday, March 26, 2015

Fab Finds on a Brief Hiatus

Hello all of my wonderful readers! I'm writing this post to let you know that there won't be a Fab Finds post this week or next week. I'm a bit overwhelmed with things to do at the moment.

One of the projects I'm working on is making my blog into a book. Or should I say several books. I've chosen Blurb.com for this project. The choice was between Blog2Print.com and Blurb. With Blog2Print I found that I couldn't edit the text of my blog once it was slurped into their website. And I didn't like that, so I went with Blurb.

I'm trying to get the first of my blog books finished before March 31st so I can take advantage of their 20% off sale. I have another reason for trying to hurry and finish this project. I would like to have my blog book printed and ready to show the class I'm teaching at our upcoming Family Discovery Day in May. I'll talk a little bit more about this event in a bit.

First, I want to show you what my blog book likes like so far. Here are some screenshots. Because my book is still in draft mode, these pages may change.

This is the book's front cover. I still haven't decided if this is the color I'm going to go with or not.


And here are a few pages from the book.







And this is the work space in Blurb.


I do like Blurb's edit functionality. I can create my blog book to look pretty much exactly as I want it to look. But that means there's lots of work involved and it can be quite time consuming. I've gotten "Image Resolution Warnings" for a few of my photos. These photos were fine online in my blog, but wouldn't look very nice in my book.

So, I've had to scan these photos again and upload them into Blurb. And I have to go through and edit my posts so they make sense in book form. For instance, I need to point the reader to the page number of a photo or document. Also, I'm planning on creating a Table of Contents, which I assume I will be doing by hand. That's one feature I liked about Blog2Print. It creates a Table of Contents automatically. I also need to proofread the book before I press the order button. So ya. Lots to do still.

I mentioned that I will be teaching a class at our local Family Discovery Day in May. That's another huge project I have on my plate right now. The syllabus for that is due on April 8th. I also need to continue working on my presentation which includes creating a PowerPoint slide presentation for my class. By the way, I was asked to give a presentation about Family History Blogging. How fun is that!?

If you attended RootsTech this year either in person or virtually, you may know that they had a Family Discovery Day on the last day of the conference. The wonderful people at RootsTech are providing selected RootsTech sessions for local Family Discovery Day events to be held around the world. Our local Family Discovery Day will have opening and closing general sessions and a variety of classes. To find a Family Discovery Day in your area, click HERE.

Besides trying to finish my blog book and my Family Discovery Day class presentation, I also have my usual family and church responsibilities to take care of. So, something had to give. And I'm afraid it's going to be my Fab Finds posts for the next two weeks. My Fab Finds post should resume on April 10th.

Thanks for reading!


© 2015 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved

20 comments:

  1. I am so glad to read this post. I have probably published 8 books based on my blog using blog2print. They are beautiful and what I would describe as "quick and dirty" but I've always been irritated that I couldn't edit a few things. I recently heard about blurb and its editing ability. Then I've had to decide if I want quick and dirty or perfection. Regardless, what a gift we are leaving for our descendants.

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    1. Hi Kathy,

      I totally get your irritation with Blog2Print's inability to edit text. I was frustrated with it too. Blurb offers quite a bit of flexibility with editing and I'm happy about that. I may wish for a bit more, but I'm using BookSmart right now. If I'm not mistaken, blurb's BookWright software may give a lot more editing capabilities. With BookSmart I can change the layouts of the pages and even it the some of the layouts and create my own, which is pretty cool. Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. I'm glad to see how your book looks. I need to get back on my book. You're right -- so much to do!! Fab Finds deserves a break -- we'll miss it but we'll understand too.

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    1. Thank you Wendy! I'm excited to have this book finished, printed, and in my hands. Thanks for stopping by!

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  3. Jana, I've used blurb a couple of times and while I do like the editing part, I wasn't able to figure out how to edit the pictures to make them as large as yours are. I need a lesson!

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    1. Hi Debi,

      I don't know if you were using their BookWright software or BookSmart. I'm using BookSmart and there is an edit tab at the top of the page which enables editing some of the layout features such as photo size. Perhaps I'll do a blog post about BookSmart's features when all of this is done. :) Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. Totally understandable you need to take the time off! I too have done Blurb books under deadline, and you do want to allow plenty of time for proofreading. My sister wanted copies of the two books I did for my parents for this last Christmas, so I used it as an opportunity to add a couple things and fix some (minor) mistakes, but wouldn't you know, I still managed to transpose two letters in one last name on an edited page!

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    1. Hi Amanda,

      What wonderful Christmas gifts for family members! I didn't know we could edit and reorder our Blurb books. That's good to know. Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. Hello! Blurb is a fantastic company. I used the option to upload a custom InDesign File. What is great is you can order several copies or one copy. This allowed family to purchase a copy of the book as they wanted. Some took advantage of the Blurb sales.

    Blurb is the publisher for my family history book that is a 276 hard backed book featuring collection of family tree research, historical records and family photographs for the ancestral lines on the paternal side of the Murosky family.

    You can learn more about my book here - http://murosky-ancestral-lines.blogspot.com/p/published-family-history.html

    I have also successfully used Blurb to create family photo books.

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    1. Hi Michelle,

      I'm late responding to your comment. My blog book has already been ordered and delivered. I made the deadline. Yay! I have to say that I'm very happy with Blurb and will use them in the future. I really like the ability to edit my book and the quality is fabulous. I used the ProLine Pearl Photo paper. It's awesome!

      Thanks for the link to your blog post. It's also good to know that you are happy with using Blurb for photo books. Thanks for stopping by!

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  6. What a fantastic project! Thanks so much for the reviews of the two services. Like you, the inability to edit would drive me nuts.

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    1. Hi Leslie,

      Thank you so much! I'm quite late in responding to most of these comments. My book has already been ordered and delivered. I'm so happy with Blurb. They did a fantastic job. I'll be sharing more about my book in a future post. Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. Congratulations on your upcoming blog book and your presentation at Family Discovery Day. Enjoy! We'll be here to welcome your return.

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  8. I will miss Fabulous Finds so hurry back, but of course not at the expense of careful proofreading.

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  9. I know how much work it takes to make a book. I too have used Blurb and everything works well for me there unless I try to upload text from another source and have it flow automatically throughout the book. All my formatting seems to go and if I update one page everything shifts on subsequent pages - very frustrating. I finally figured out it is better for me to just move one page at a time into a text box I have created. Anyway...I have had wonderful books made. Another suggestion is to have one book actually printed and then proofread again. I find more things I want to change when I have the book in my hands. Then you can make any changes and have the book ready for other family members.

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    1. Hi Carol,

      I'm quite late in responding to your comment. Yes, the formatting can get tricky and takes time to make everything look the way you want it to. My book has already arrived and I'm so happy with Blurb. I will definitely use them again to create my other blog books. Thank you for stopping by!

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