Personal book-makers | Indie authors | Professionals & businesses
Self- and indie-publishing: Democracy in action
Independent publishing has come a long way since Blurb launched in 2006. Back then, just being able to publish your own book easily and affordably was a shock to the traditional system. But the self- and indie-publishing industry today is thriving, and once again we’re leading the way. We’ve learned over the years that there are even more book-makers – and reasons for making a book – than even we imagined. And so, over time, we’ve developed products and services in support of book-makers of all kinds:
- Personal. Think of a book of baby pictures for mum on Mother’s Day.
- Author. Now think of a book of recipes by a food blogger, professionally designed and for sale in our Bookshop.
- Professional and business. Still with us? Now think of a gorgeous coffee-table book of an ad agency’s best work, left behind for a prospective client after a pitch.
Let’s talk a little bit more about these different kinds of book-makers and how Blurb addresses the unique needs of all three.
Make it personal
If you really want to see someone smile, make a personal book for them. Bingo, Bob’s your uncle, guaranteed gift success. Your book might be a photo book for a loved one. Or it might be a cookbook of treasured family recipes, distributed at the next reunion. Whatever it is, the effect a personal Blurb book can have is amazing, because everything about our books shouts quality: Printing, colour, paper, binding, covers, end sheets. (Not sure what an end sheet is? That’s okay: We’ll teach you.)
From celebrations of birth to in memoriams, from weddings to anniversaries, from collections of your photography to photographs of your collections, we help you create the kind of personal photo and illustrated books that look like they came from the bookshop.
Tools for making the perfect personal book
Blurb’s online tool, Bookify, is the easiest way to self-publish a personal book. There’s no download required and it’s full of pre-designed templates. You can even add photos straight from sites like Instagram and Facebook to create what we call Instant books.
If you’re a bit more adventurous, BookSmart is the way to go. BookSmart is our free downloadable application that gives you a whole world of layout, size, font and design options. You don’t have to be a designer to use it, but you’ll feel like one when you see the end results in your print or ebook.
And for the photographers who use Adobe®'s Lightroom® photo management software, Blurb is built straight into the application workflow. The Book module lets you design your book within Lightroom and send it directly to Blurb for printing. Pretty cool.
Let’s get even more personal
When we talk about “personal” books, it can be a bit confusing. Because let’s face it, no matter what kind of book you make, it’s a very personal experience. There’s a lot of blood, sweat, and (hopefully not too many) tears that go into making a book (unless it’s an instant book; those are pretty ... well, instant).
But personal books in our world are generally those that aren’t for sale in the Blurb Bookshop. They’re books that usually are only printed in editions of one or two, are primarily made as gifts, and have an intended audience of family and/or friends.
Looking for inspiration for a personal book? Check out our Book types page.
Authors welcome. That includes you.
Let’s imagine for a moment that you have an idea for a book that might be of interest to people outside your family. (And really, doesn’t everybody?) That makes you an author-in-waiting. Feels good, doesn’t it? Well trust us, it feels even better when you turn that idea into something real by making your book and selling it in our Bookshop.
Perhaps you want to self-publish a children’s book featuring your amazing words and your collaborator’s incredible illustrations (or vice versa). Maybe it’s a graphic novel you’ve been working on for years. Or a book on the history of architecture from your unique perspective. Whatever it is, you don’t have to send out 100 proposals to publishing houses hoping one of them will help you get it made. With Blurb, you just do it. And once you’ve done it, we’ve got all kinds of ways to help you promote and sell your book.
Tools of the trade
Our book-making tool, BookSmart, gives you over 500 different combinations of layouts for text and graphics to play with, so you can get the book you have in your head onto the page. (Or screen. Or both).
If you’re a designer – or know one – you (or they) can use our Adobe® InDesign® plug-in for truly sky’s-the-limit book design. And Blurb’s book-making module is built right into Adobe's Lightroom® photo management software for photography-focused book projects.
Making your business look great is our business
One of the best things about creating a platform for creative people is that you never know how they’re going to use it. Over the years, we’ve seen more and more businesses using Blurb for a wide variety of purposes, including advertising and promotion, new business pitches and meetings, non-profit fundraising, investor relations and client appreciation gifts.
In a world that’s increasingly digital, the impact of a print book can be significant. A book can tell the story of your business for you long after you’ve left the room. But if you’re concerned those 20-somethings will think of you as a Luddite, rest easy. Blurb also offers enhanced rich media ebooks that you can create right from the print book files. It’s the best of both worlds. You can print copies for handing out at key meetings or events (and people will be impressed), and you can have an ebook version to distribute globally at the click of a button.
Get treated like a pro
For professionals and businesses, all of Blurb’s book-making tools are appropriate – the choice really depends on the book to be made. Larger organisations usually have in-house design or creative departments, so our Adobe® InDesign® and Lightroom tools are often used. But it’s the additional services that our larger business customers have grown to love: Significant volume order discounts, offset printing options and dedicated account managers. That’s some serious business.
In our world, the words “professional” and “business” cover a lot of ground. In the context of book-making, those words pertain more to how a book is used than to the type of person or entity making the book.
For example, we have individuals who have used Blurb to promote their one-person businesses one book at a time. We also have Fortune 1000 companies making thousands of copies to commemorate an event. Large or small, commercial or non-profit, businesses and organisations have discovered the power of having Blurb on their team.
Learn more about Blurb for Professionals and Businesses.
Featured books on this page:
Chad Jennings, Scribbles | Michael Rylander, Rylander Design | Jerry Tanner and Kevin Grossman, You Can Do What a Toucan Can Do Too | Rachel Martin, Comforts From Home