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DPChallenge Forums >> Side Challenges and Tournaments >> Make a book : Solo Photography Book Month
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01/18/2008 05:54:07 PM · #1
Try something new or get your next opus out there.
Starting in April, shoot & finish your own photo book.

//gordonmcgregor.blogspot.com/2008/01/sofobomo.html
01/18/2008 06:12:26 PM · #2
That is a cool idea, and I have often thought about putting together a book. My stumbling block everytime is knowing which company to go with - I haven't yet found any reviews of UK based photobook producers, and am worried that I will end up getting poor results.
01/18/2008 06:15:34 PM · #3
Great Idea. I might have to get in one. My last one was a Wedding Album proof I did that had some errors. I got a lot out of doing a 50 image book of my Kenya trip, but I never compile anything for my Australia trip.

So many ideas...
01/18/2008 06:19:54 PM · #4
thinking about it...
01/18/2008 07:15:07 PM · #5
Interesting.
01/18/2008 07:27:13 PM · #6
I've been toying around with a book of Madison Co., Kentucky for the local bookstores. This might be the perfect motivation!
01/18/2008 07:56:07 PM · #7
I've used lulu.com (see "Gift of Hope" at www.lulu.com/tremain - if you really want one, contact me...)

The one listed is my 2nd book - couldn't do anything with the first one (the photos were considered "derived works" of copyrighted sculptures - check out the copyright laws closely before putting in the effort).

If I'm not mistaken, lulu.com now offers a high quality print book option. I know lulu.com offers lots of advice in their help pages, and a converter to make your Word document into a print-ready PDF.

It is a real rush to see that bundle of paper - that book, with your name after "by"

Maybe this is what I need to get me going on my next book.

(Not to throw cold water, but putting together the book is only part of the job - the hard part is marketing your book! On the other hand, if you don't have a book, you don't have anything to market...)

If there's any question about whether you're good enough to publish, look at my scores...
01/18/2008 08:10:46 PM · #8
I've been thinking about this for almost a year. I added my name to the list to try and commit myself. It may help to have a timeframe. Then all I need is the time!
01/18/2008 09:11:29 PM · #9
Originally posted by dtremain:

(Not to throw cold water, but putting together the book is only part of the job - the hard part is marketing your book! On the other hand, if you don't have a book, you don't have anything to market...)


That's certainly true - but the SoFoBoMo aim is to get people over that 'a book is a big deal to put together' hump, even if the first attempt isn't publishable. It's about committing, shooting, trying, finishing, making the edits and saying 'done' in a month. The process and the achievement is probably more important than the final product, really. Least that's generally the case for the other 'InAMonth' efforts like a recorded album or novel in a month. It gets you past the idea that it is an unattainable goal to finish, so you never start.
01/18/2008 10:23:50 PM · #10
Originally posted by Gordon:

Originally posted by dtremain:

(Not to throw cold water, but putting together the book is only part of the job - the hard part is marketing your book! On the other hand, if you don't have a book, you don't have anything to market...)


That's certainly true - but the SoFoBoMo aim is to get people over that 'a book is a big deal to put together' hump, even if the first attempt isn't publishable. It's about committing, shooting, trying, finishing, making the edits and saying 'done' in a month. The process and the achievement is probably more important than the final product, really. Least that's generally the case for the other 'InAMonth' efforts like a recorded album or novel in a month. It gets you past the idea that it is an unattainable goal to finish, so you never start.


Well put, Gordon. Definitely count me in!
01/18/2008 11:41:08 PM · #11
Certainly thinking about it. It seems like a good idea.
01/19/2008 11:46:06 AM · #12
worth noting that you don't have to actually print a book to finish this - a well laid out and formated PDF is just as appropriate if that's what you want to do. There are plenty of free PDF creators out there too.
01/19/2008 12:05:13 PM · #13
interesting idea. i may just do it.
01/19/2008 12:41:08 PM · #14
Originally posted by karmat:

interesting idea. i may just do it.

Just say, "Yes," to side challenges! ;)
01/19/2008 12:45:00 PM · #15
"Gift of Hope" took me about 3 weeks to do - in my "spare" time between my regular job & family stuff. Most of the pictures were shot in one weekend (with some filler shots the following weekend). Editing, text, layout took about a week to figure out and get nailed down.

There are so many talented photographers on this site - it is a shame for them not to have collections of their work published. It would be so cool for many of the dpchallenge members to produce books.

Come on. Do it. Do it. Do it...
01/19/2008 12:46:18 PM · #16
This looks like an interesting idea. I doubt I will go all the way to printed book, maybe just a PDF.

Originally posted by Gordon:

worth noting that you don't have to actually print a book to finish this - a well laid out and formated PDF is just as appropriate if that's what you want to do. There are plenty of free PDF creators out there too.
If you use OpenOffice or Microsoft Word to create the document you can just print it directly to PDF with CutePDF Writer which is free.
01/19/2008 12:59:14 PM · #17
If you do the PDF using the right specs, it is a very short step to a printed book - should you want to do that later.
01/19/2008 01:02:05 PM · #18
I'm going for it, too. Seeing some DPCers on the list made the commitment even easier.

We have the Red Rock GTG during that time which will really help me get lots of wonderful shots worth sharing.

I also have a showing coming up in June - August. It will be wonderful to have a book (or two, if I can do some before) to sell at the showing. What a fantastic idea!
01/19/2008 06:14:41 PM · #19
Originally posted by Raziel:

If you use OpenOffice or Microsoft Word to create the document you can just print it directly to PDF with CutePDF Writer which is free.


Yup. You can also use pdf995 which is also free. Lots of good options like that available.
01/20/2008 01:28:24 AM · #20
Sounds good to me, will watch this thread
01/20/2008 02:27:15 AM · #21
Last year I worked on a book for ' . substr('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', strrpos('//www.dpchallenge.com/images/user_icon/21.gif', '/') + 1) . ' mad_brewer. I felt he had a lot of really nice pictures but they were just sitting on his computer. So, I went to snapfish.com and worked on a book for him. It took time but Ken was really surprised to get a book with his work in it for his birthday. I think the book turned out awesome even from a "discount" place like snapfish. Ken couldn't believe how much better the pictures looked printed than just seeing them on the computer monitor. Creating one for myself would definitely be great and get me to look at my pictures more in depth. Thanks for the link!
02/18/2008 03:48:15 PM · #22
Looking for suggestions for questions, if you've got any ideas...

6 weeks to the start of the fuzzy month
02/18/2008 04:25:45 PM · #23
Would it count if I used that month to go through and re-edit and choose shots from my adventures to the Middle East? I think my family would actually like a book of those pictures, so it would have a useful purpose as well.

One idea for a question would be "If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go?" Or you could try "Boxers or briefs?" for the gentlemen. :-) Though in Austin, I'm sure there's a third alternative.

Message edited by author 2008-02-18 16:27:44.
02/18/2008 04:34:12 PM · #24
Originally posted by Melethia:

Would it count if I used that month to go through and re-edit and choose shots from my adventures to the Middle East? I think my family would actually like a book of those pictures, so it would have a useful purpose as well.


Nobody's going to stop you ;) Mind you, nobody is stopping you doing that now and then making another book in April, either ;) The inspiration of SoFoBoMo really is to shoot and assemble the whole book in a month, though, rather than digging in to a pile of images you've got that need organising. I think it is supposed to feel a bit rough and ready, rushed and maybe not completely polished. That forces you to make the decisions, not agonise over them for months. It makes you live with those decisions too, move on, get finished.

Message edited by author 2008-02-18 16:41:31.
02/18/2008 04:36:30 PM · #25
Good point!!
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