News

Lulu.com’s Fall Conference Line-up

We’re hitting the road this fall! Dan Dillon, our resident product marketing extraordinaire, and Glenn Hunt, self-publishing guru and Lulu forum moderator, will be speaking on three panels at the upcoming Self-Publishing Book Expo. Additionally, Lulu’s founder and chairman, Bob Young, who works to keep Lulu and the industry at the front of digital disruption and innovative, will be speaking at three key digital conferences this fall.

The upcoming events include:

  • All Things Open – October 22, 2014 in Raleigh, NC
    • Speaker: Bob Young
    • Topic: So You Want to Start an Open Source Company?
  • Free Software and Open Source Symposium (FSOSS) @Seneca College – October 23, 2014 in Toronto, Canada
    • Keynote: Bob Young
  • Internet Summit – November 12, 2014 in Raleigh, NC
    • Featured Speaker: Bob Young
  • Self-Publishing Book Expo – November 15, 2014 in New York, NY
    • Speakers: Dan Dillon and Glenn Hunt
    • Session: Team Building – With a wealth of new resources at your disposal, deciding if you need a team (and who should be on it) has become a much simpler process. In this session you’ll learn from the pros and from fellow authors, where you can go it alone, when and where you might need help and how you can find it.
    • Advanced Marketing – More experienced authors will gain even greater knowledge of marketing techniques that will help boost sales. Topics covered in this session will include, how and where to advertise, targeted bookstore promotions, blog ads, reading groups, how to reach libraries and librarians and how to create and upload a book trailer.
    • Formatting: One of the many advantages of self-publishing is having the power to choose which format to present your work. Hardcovers, paperbacks, eBooks, audiobooks are all viable options depending on your audience and your level of expertise. Join this informative session to learn all you need to produce a book in the right format for you.

Come check us out!

What’s New at Lulu.com?

Over the past few months, we’ve been focusing on ways to make Lulu.com an easier, more engaging experience for authors and shoppers alike. You’ll notice that as of today Lulu.com has a brand new look and feel, which has been developed with the goal of streamlining your experience. The new Lulu.com will help you connect with the tools or books you’re looking for faster. Here’s how:

  • 0814_Website_Rollout_Header_ENBookshelves on the logged out landing page will be continuously updated to highlight Lulu.com books to readers looking for a specific genre or book based on time of year.
  • If you need help, services and forum discussions are available from the page you’re visiting, putting help at your fingertips.
  • The book builder tool shows you the exact cost of the book you’re publishing as you build it so you can better understand your money making potential.

Want to learn more about our new look and features? Check out our latest Prezi which walks through the new site. So, take a look around the new Lulu.com and let us know what you think! Leave a comment for us on our Facebook page or tweet us with the hashtag #NewLuluDotCom.

Book Expo America – One for the Books

2014 has been a very busy year for Lulu. We launched Lulu Jr., our new brand that allows children to become published authors by encouraging creativity, strengthening literacy and building self-esteem. We continue to introduce Picture.com to new audiences so everyone can show what they love. We expanded eBook distribution options to include Kindle, Kobo and many others. And we introduced new pricing for our vast print book options to save our authors and readers even more.

To celebrate these new offerings with authors, readers and our peers, we headed to Book Expo America last week. And what a great stage it was to showcase all of the new things we’ve been working to deliver. The most visible is our new brand.

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Lulu invades Book Expo America!

 

We were joined by three celebrities to help us spread our message – two-time New York Times bestselling author and award winning gospel artist Dr. Juanita Bynum, Yvette Gonzalez-Nacer, known for her role as Kiki on Nick Jr.’s “Fresh Beat Band,” and New York Times bestselling children’s book author Peter H. Reynolds.

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Dr. Juanita Bynum and Yvette Gonzalez-Nacer, best known as “Kiki” from Nick Jr.’s Fresh Beat Band, at Book Expo America

 

Our favorite part of BEA was getting to see so many of you, our customers and a great many aspiring authors. Self-publishing showed a lot of renewed momentum at the show, and we loved being able to tell you all about the new things we’re working on the deliver later this year, ensuring you’re as successful in your writing, marketing and selling as you can be.

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Peter H. Reynolds, acclaimed author of The Dot series, talks with fellow authors

 

We learned a lot from BEA attendees about What You Love and what you need to be more successful. We can’t wait to implement some of these ideas at Lulu.com to help each of you achieve your publishing goals. Of course, if you weren’t able to attend BEA this year, please share your ideas with us in the comments section!

Tearing down the wall! Lulu now offers new print packages to fit everyone

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When Bob Young, Lulu’s founder, tore down the barriers to bringing a book to market, he knew millions of people would benefit. Since Lulu.com made its debut more than ten years ago, people from every corner of the globe have created works for every reader in every genre.

  • Fiction writers have found and delighted new audiences.
  • Memoirists have left important legacies.
  • Educators have removed obstacles to knowledge.
  • Physicians have shared life-saving research and information.
  • Biographers have celebrated fascinating lives.
  • Entrepreneurs have launched and grown new businesses.

That’s just a fraction of the list. Here at Lulu.com, we’ve satisfied just about every possible reason a person can make a book.

And now we’re tearing down another wall: the final barrier to flexibility and control. Today, Lulu.com is offering new, lower priced print book options. You can now choose from Premium, Standard and Value to fit your every book-making need.

Premium books are hard cover with an optional dust jacket. These books can have image wrap or linen wrap covers, offering you the choice of six linen colors as well as foil stamping for the spine (three color options there, too). You can also choose white or cream paper options. Our Premium line also includes books with photo quality color or black & white interiors. These books provide the highest quality possible and options that have never been available in a print on demand offering until now.

Standard books are soft cover, available as perfect bound, coil stitched or saddle stitched. These books have bookstore quality color or black & white interiors. Many of our Standard book options are eligible for distribution, and all of them can have bulk discounts applied.

Value books are soft cover available as perfect bound only. They are available with color or black & white interiors. These books are not currently eligible for distribution or for bulk discounts. As the name suggests, the main advantage of our Value line is lower cost. The Value line books are comparable to what you’ll find if you shop around before deciding to use Lulu.com.

All of these product lines come with lower pricing, so you can increase your earning potential or pass the savings on to your readers. And not to worry: We’ve preserved the high quality you love in all of our books.

To make choosing the right print book option as easy as possible, we’ve created a free Book Builder tool to guide you through the book creation process. Go to the Book Builder, try it out, and let us know what you think! Also, from now until April 24th save 15% on your order when you publish a Standard or Premium print book with Lulu.com (use discount code: SAVE15 at checkout).

New and Improved: Lulu now offers Kindle, Kobo and More

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Alright, we’re just going to cut to the chase: Lulu authors may now distribute their Lulu eBooks to both the Kindle and Kobo eBookstores. That’s right, upload it once and sell it everywhere – and, by the way since we’re talking about awesome news, our print book distribution service is Free!

Now with Lulu, authors have a single, free and simple method for getting all of your books into as many distribution channels as possible. No more need to publish your books in multiple places. With Lulu, you can sell what you love everywhere.

To make this even better, when you choose the Kobo and Everything Else distribution option, your eBook will be made available for purchase on eBook retailer sites in the Ingram network includinhttp://www.lulu.com/blog/wp-admin/post-new.phpg Kalahari, Booktopia, Baker & Taylor, Gardners, Oyster Books, Sainsbury’s and others – not to mention a long list specialty eBook retailers from around the world.

IMPORTANT NOTE: We are not yet able to offer Kindle and Kobo distribution options to authors residing in Australia.

New eBook Pricing and Manage Distribution Pages

mediumAs part of this release, we have redesigned the Manage Distribution page and the pricing step in the eBook publishing wizard. Authors may now enter a retail price and then choose the retail sites (distribution channels) on which they want to sell their books. The retail price, distribution fees, Lulu commission, and creator revenue are clearly displayed for each channel.

How do I get my previously published eBook in the Kindle and Kobo Stores?

If your eBook is already in distribution, simply click the Manage button next to the project title, add the Kindle and Kobo options, and save your changes. Since your eBook previously passed the Lulu QA Review, we will pass it directly to Ingram for distribution into their network. You eBook will, however, be subject to each retailer’s review procedure before being made available for purchase on those sites.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If your eBook is already published through Kindle Direct or available for purchase on Amazon.com, you may not distribute a duplicate copy to the Kindle Bookstore. Doing so will violate both the Lulu eBook distribution terms and your Amazon agreement.

New Sell Page Design

Intensive studies and user feedback indicate that people really like the Lulu site, but the most important question of all “How much money will I make?” is not readily apparent. To help answer this most important of questions, we have redesigned the Sell page to provide an at-a-glance summary of Lulu’s distribution options, services, tools, and retail pricing examples for both print and eBooks in distribution. It’s glorious!

Other Improvements

  • eBook Title Capitalization Validation. 

One of the most common causes for our QA team rejecting an eBook is that the author did not follow proper capitalization rules for their title. This new feature alerts a creator a title does not meet these capitalization rules, so that it can be fixed on the very first step.

  • Select Between Previously Used Publisher Names.

When an author brings their own ISBN, they must also provide the publisher name that they tied to that ISBN when they bought it. This name is then sent to all of our distribution and metadata partners. To help reduce the number of almost-the-same duplicate publisher names, we have replaced the text entry field with a dropdown that allows a creator to choose a previously used publisher name or enter a brand new one. This list is account-based, and an account without any publisher names will see a blank entry field.

  • eBook Approval Email.

We now send an email to an author when our QA team approves their eBook for distribution to retailers. Previously, they were only notified if we had rejected their eBook. This keeps our authors informed on their eBook’s status, and will help prevent support cases from authors asking for a status update.

  • Edit Price on Manage Distribution Page.

When we gave the eBook Manage Distribution page the same interface as the Price step in the Wizard, we also opened up the ability for creators to edit their eBook’s price on the Manage Distro page. This allows them to manage all aspects of how their book is sold in one place.

Lulu.com Liveblog @WritersDigest #WDCW2013

Writer's Digest Live Blog

Lulu is excited to be heading to the annual Writer’s Digest Conference in Los Angeles this weekend, where writers from all over the world gather to further their education in both the craft and business of being a writer.  We’ll be reporting live from the event throughout on Twitter and here, so tune in often for updates.

This year’s list of speakers and presentations is quite impressive and includes an appearance by Lulu’s own Dan Dillon, who will be speaking on a panel about the new frontiers in self-publishing.  Of course, we will be providing coverage of the self-publishing side of the conference with blog updates on what we are learning from the experts on site. Some of the sessions will include:

  • Self-Publishing Now – Phil Sexton, Publisher at Writer’s Digest, will be discussing the state of self-publishing today, including the biggest industry news, most recent success stories, and insights into the growth of hybrid authors.
  • Writing and Editing the Breakaway Self-Published Book - Red Room CEO and Editor in Chief Ivory Madison will be discussing methods and best practices that help authors blast through writer’s block and quickly develop skills to be a better editor of their work.
  • Mythbusting: Traditional Publishing vs. DIY Publishing - Roy M. Carlisle, a veteran of 36 years in traditional publishing, dispels the myths about self-publishing and examines the bold truth about why DIY options are trumping traditional publishing in very important, career-making ways.
  • Congratulations! You Published It – Now How Do You Sell It? - A panel discussion with top industry experts discussing everything from “what can you do to help ensure people find your book?” to “what makes the difference between readers saying ‘not interested’ and “I’ve got to have that?”
  • New Frontiers in Self-Publishing – Panel of industry insiders looks to shed light on where self-publishing is headed and how it will affect authors.

Of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg in the way of awesome information that will be coming out of the conference, so check back as we will be frequently updating from onsite. You can also participate directly in the conversation on Twitter under the hashtag: #WDCW13

If you have any particular questions you’d liked to have answered or sessions or speakers you would like us to cover, please leave your suggestions in the comments below.

New Lulu Book Templates

Here at Lulu we’re constantly listening and adapting to our authors’ needs.  Recently, we’ve received a lot of great ideas and feedback about the templates we provide for print books. We’ve taken all of your valuable input and are happy to provide Lulu authors with new and improved print book templates, which include the most common content and formatting elements for both fiction and nonfiction.  These templates are designed to make your life easier, give your book a more professional look and save you time during the self-publishing process. The 15 new templates can be used either as style guides or updatable downloads. Rest assured, everything you need to make your book great is contained in these new templates.

The new and improved templates are available in all formats. To access, click here.

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Key features of the new templates include:

  • copyright page
  • page numbers
  • section breaks
  • headers and footers
  • custom styles for dedicated sections of your book
Correct formatting and content for the title and copyright pages
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Margins, headers, and footers

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Custom styles for dedicated sections of your book
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The templates also include instructions on how to use each one and great tips for making your book look and read like one created professionally. Whether you choose to use these templates as a reference, a style guide, or a starting point, the ultimate decision as to how you format your print book is completely yours.