Joe Everett is a genealogy librarian at FamilySearch, responsible for patron services in international branches of the Family History Library. Joe was previously the head of International Reference at the Family History Library and a technical services librarian, cataloging Slavic and Germanic records. He also spent several years as content manager at Ancestry.com. Joe earned a B.A. in Russian Language and Family History/Genealogy (Germanic emphasis) from Brigham Young University and a Master of Library Science from Emporia State University (Kansas). He has been active in library and genealogical associations and has lectured and published articles Central & East European research.

23 July 2008

Lulu.com - Self Publishing

I recently discovered Lulu.com and I love it. In just a few minutes, you can create book and start ordering copies for yourself or to distribute, or you can sell them right from Lulu.com. Lulu.com manufactures each book on demand, so you don't have to worry about inventory sitting around, and you don't have to invest a bunch of money up front to print a minimum number of copies.

So far, I have created two books for my own personal use. Off and on, I have written my journal using the computer, rather than a handwritten journal. I did that in 2002 and again in 2005-2007. I enjoyed writing on the computer, because I could write faster, and edit as I go, so I was able to express myself better and say more. The only problem was that I missed being able to just pull the journal off the shelf and read it. I also began to worry about losing the data. So I have been looking for a long time for a way to print and professionally bind these computer journals. Lulu.com to the rescue.

For only 20 dollars plus shipping, I was able to print a copy of my 2002 journal (64 pages). It is a sturdy 8 1/2" x 11" volume with a glossy hardcover binding that will last forever. I loved it so much, I have created a book for my 2005-2007 journal and, get this, it is more than twice as large, but the cost was almost the same! I guess the binding makes up the bulk of the prices, and the number of pages is not so important.

By the way, private projects such as these journals are secure on Lulu.com. No one else can view them or order them unless I make them public. I have a few other things I would like to put into book form for personal use, and then maybe I will take a look at actually publishing and trying to sell some other writings. We'll see. For now, I'm just thrilled that I have found a cost-effective way to produce hardbound copies of my journals. After 2008, I will be going back to the computer for journaling, since I know I have a great way to preserve it when I'm through.

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