Thursday, January 14, 2010

Green Technology Strategies Hardback Book in Print

Green Technology StrategiesAfter some problems with the LuLu publishing system, the hardback edition of my book "Green Technology Strategies" is avialable (ISBN: 978-0-9806201-4-6) This took two hours to create, starting from the paperback edition.

The process of producing a hardback edition of an existing paperback book was something I thought would take a couple of minutes. have a button to push to create a hardback if you have already set up the files for a paperback. This seemed to work, copying all the book details to the hardback. I just had to specify if I wanted the book covered in cloth (with a dust jacket) or have a glossy printed paper cover (I went for the glossy paper).

The cover and book content were unchanged from the paperback. But then I noticed there was no where to enter the ISBN of the hardback (issued by Thorpe Bowker) which is different to the paperback. A check with the LuLu help files and some head scratching told me I had to go back a step before the one I started at. The problem was that LuLu assumed I would use an ISBN issued by them.

Then the subtitle on the cover did not quite line up the way it did on the paperback. This might be due to the slight difference in the size of the cover. A hardback cover extends a few mm beyond the pages of a book, whereas a paperback cover is the same size as the pages. I had to manually break the text in the subtitle so "carbon emissions" was on one line.

Then I found the LuLu price calculator kept rounding the price up one cent more than the amount I entered.

That all took about an hour to fix. Then I realised I had to modify the content of the book to include the new hardback ISBN in the front matter (LuLu automatically generates the ISBN and barcode for the book cover, but leaves the interior up to the book's creator). That required generating a new PDF file of the entire book and checking the pagination and paragraph numbering, then uploading it. Also I had to remember to upload the new front matter to the web version of the book and the e-learning version in the ANU Moodle content management system (which is the version my students actually read).

Last of all I found that the preview of the book (so people can browse before buying) was missing. The LuLu preview generator appeared to be producing a blank preview. After going through the process a few times I discovered the preview was being generated, just not displayed.

One thing which did work was that LuLU linked the downloadable e-book, paperback and hardcover editions of the book together, so that customers can see they have three versions to choose from.

All that took another hour. I guess that publishers earn their money after all. ;-)

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