Update from Lulu Chief Operation Officer – Tom Bright

Hello Lulu fanatics and creators,

My name is Tom Bright, and I am the President and Chief Operating Officer at Lulu.  Today, I’m writing my first blog post and what better time than now, when so many new and exciting opportunities are becoming available for authors every day.  In my posts, I’ll speak to these opportunities, like Apple’s newly announced iBooks® Author app, what they mean for you, and how Lulu’s tools give you the ultimate control over your publishing experience.  This will empower you to go even further with your works in more markets including not only the iBookstore℠, but also Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, and the NOOK Book Store, as an eBook or in print.

Our mission here at Lulu is to make sure you, our remarkable content creators, are able to take full advantage of these opportunities.  We want to help you reach more readers and sell more books – no matter your background or goals – all while maximizing your visibility and your profits.  We do this through our retail partnerships with companies like Apple, which already has over 60,000 Lulu eBooks for sale on iBookstore shelves.

Speaking of Apple, we think what they’re offering aspiring authors is great.  It is just one more way to share knowledge and ideas with each other – an endeavor that is becoming more and more important. I’ve read the concerns of bloggers and journalists around iBooks Author.  I believe that especially in a self-publishing world, the author has a responsibility to market their book and distribute it as widely as possible.  After all, isn’t this the goal – the transfer of ideas to as many people as possible?  When the publishers and bookstores controlled which books were available for sale, marketing could be left to the publisher.  Today, the barrier to publishing is lower than it has ever been.  No author can afford to restrict their work to a single channel.  Lulu’s tools make it easier than ever to distribute to the widest array of physical and digital bookstores.

Indeed, it is through the power of options that we give authors what matters most:  control.  We’ve found that authors don’t want to choose between formats, channels, or mediums, and we don’t believe you, or your readers, should have to.  Through Lulu’s distribution partnerships, print-on-demand, and eBook technologies, authors are able to best meet the needs of all their customers in the ways that make the most sense for them.  Because an author today can never really be sure how someone might discover and read their titles, Lulu is here to ensure your titles are accessible to anyone, anytime, anywhere.

Feel free to click the following links to learn more about Lulu’s publishing and distribution options and how they can work for you.

Cheers,

Tom

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The iBookstore is a service mark of Apple Inc. iBook is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.

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9 Comments

  1. Jenny Scott

    Hi Tom,
    Thanks I am looking forward to uploading my ‘DUMBO Diary : History of RNZAF No.6 Squadron 1943 -1945′ in the next couple of weeks. 430 pages+ 182,000+ words and many years of research.
    Jenny

  2. Thanks for the update, Tom! I’m sorry if I am somehow missing this, but will Lulu continue to natively support distribution to the iBookstore? To my understanding, the newest iBook format is unique in its own way.

    I guess what I am trying to say is this: To create an eBook using iBooks Author, am I still able to submit it to the iBookstore using Lulu?

  3. Ashley Davies

    Thanks Tom for the update. Does lulu support the .ibooks format? I have a book made with iBooks Author ready for publishing but I can’t find how to upload it and publish it on Lulu.

    Thanks

  4. Tom

    Hi Jenny,

    After all the time and effort you have put into this project, you must be very excited to be this close to publishing your book. I am a history buff – what a fascinating subject. I wish you all the best with “DUMBO Diary : History of RNZAF No.6 Squadron 1943 – 1945″.

    Cheers,
    Tom

  5. Tom

    Hi David,

    These are two different questions. First, yes, Lulu will continue to support native distribution to the iBookstore. iBooks uses an epub for reading books. Any epub published through Lulu will continue to be distributed to the iBookstore and other channels (at the author’s discretion of course). You can either upload your epub directly or use our Word Conversion solution to turn your book into an epub.

    Your second question is if you can create a book using iBooks Author and publish it through Lulu. Today, that is not possible. Until last Friday, the EULA for iBooks Author made it impractical for Lulu to accept iBooks files. The issue was that the EULA stated that any book written through iBooks Author could only be distributed to the iBookstore, if any money was charged. On Friday, Apple changed that EULA. We are reviewing the revised EULA to determine if accepting iBooks files makes sense now.

    Cheers,
    Tom

  6. Tom

    Hi Ashley,

    As of today, this is not possible. As I mentioned to David, until last Friday, the EULA for iBooks Author made it impractical for Lulu to accept ibooks files. The issue was that the EULA required any book written through iBooks Author to only be distributed to the iBookstore if any money was charged. On Friday, Apple changed that EULA.

    We are reviewing the revised EULA to determine how the changes may impact our authors’ submissions through Lulu. In other words, we are still researching what can we do with ibooks files, please stayed tuned for updates.

    Cheers,
    Tom

  7. Greetings! Sounds great, good for moral and public relations. By the way the books are really professional, and I am proud to have gone with LULU; Cheers!!!

  8. Apple accept EPUBs in EPUB3 format with CSS3.

    Can we please have a definitive statement from Lulu whether or not their EPUB QA team will accept such EPUBs?

    If not then why and when?

    Also what formats will Lulu QA not accept and why?

  9. Morgan

    Hi Ken –

    Lulu currently uses EpubCheck 1.2 EPUB validation which only supports EPUB2.

    EpubCheck 3.0 (which supports EPUB3) is in Beta 4 and is being recommended for validation.

    http://code.google.com/p/epubcheck/

    Use of this version of the validation tool is under investigation. If the investigation and testing is successful
    we will schedule the work and upgrade. Thanks for the patience!

    Lulu

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