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brian

I've wanted to check out lulu for a while, seems like a solid self-publishing platform. I've wondered what a blog would read like in book form.

Fernando Gros

The idea of publishing blogs is a good one, especially if the book can pick up on comments and maybe tap into posts from other blogs when a topic goes viral. It's a new way of writing, maybe a new way of editing as well (do we have a word that is the literary equivalent of sampling?).

I'm also keen on anything that subverts the current structures of publishing and distribution. The blogosphere keeps surprising me with great voices and ideas from folks who probably never would have come close to a conventional book contract.

However, I'm still not sure about lulu, or about POD in the current format. It looks too much like vanity publishing and that has issues for the long term for a writer. I keep wondering if what we need, along with the technological breakthrough of lulu/pod is more guerilla/grassroots publishers who will use the lower overheads and barriers to entry as a way to take on riskier and more interesting publishing projects. Or, is the future simply that we all become our own publishers?

jonny

fernando - say a bit more about your concerns in the long term for a writer?...

Mark Berry

The reason I am tempted to get a copy is that Kester tends to post pretty long and 'complex' entries... and if I don't have time to read them that day I kind of get behind... we are thinking of doing one in the summer as W.O.W. is a journal of our project so we would then have a record of the first years journey for non-bloggers.

Fernando Gros

The two main issues are hurdles to a work being picked up by a publisher in the future and the ownership of the digital images used to make the book (rather than the copyright). I did a little looking into POD a while back because some stuff from the creative worship ministry in the 90s that I wanted to make available. The impression (this was not Lulu) was that to ever republish that (say a few years down the road), I would have to do so in a different format, which defeated the purpose since I wanted to publish the materials used (slides etc). It also seems important to keep options open for future publishing of the work, without the need for major revision. Publishers I have spoken to don't like the idea of dealing with stuff that has been through a vanity press. It might be less of an issue for an established writer, but for a nobody it looks like trouble.

I need to look a little more at the fine print with Lulu as I get the impression they are trying to be a little more open and author-oriented, but I'm still very wary, especially after the courtcases with some vanity presses in the US. It's all about the hidden strings.

djchuang

I'm on the verge of clicking publish for a book I've been editing on behalf of an organization I work for, and I'm glad to hear of the praise for Lulu.com -- they are the POD service I'm looking to go with.

I read Fernando's concern, and I agree that one has to read the fine print. From what I've read at the Lulu.com website, the copyright and ownership of the digital image remains with the author. The problem of long-term implications is more of an issue with some (many? most?) traditional publishers than an issue with the POD service.

from http://www.lulu.com/help/index.php?fSymbol=lulu_basics_faq#otherco

"Can I use Lulu in conjunction with another publishing company?"
Lulu doesn't restrict the marketing of your work, but other companies may do so. Make sure you understand the terms and conditions of all the businesses you deal with. We urge authors to take advantage of all the sales venues available to them and to share their successes with us and with other authors.

"Who is the publisher — me or Lulu?"
You are the publisher. Lulu makes no claims or restrictions on the ownership of your work. You are free to offer your work elsewhere or to remove it from Lulu at any time.

If you utilize one of Lulu's distribution services, Lulu will appear as the publisher of record. This will allow stores to order your product directly from Lulu.

jonny

thanks dj - hlepful stuff. good luck with the publishing... must get myself organised!

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  • jonny profile pic

    i have been blogging for a decade or more in fairly eclectic fashion. i am an advocate for pioneers, lover of all things creative, an explorer of faith in relation to contemporary culture, a photographer and writer. explore the presences section below to find me in other spaces

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