CreateSpace is Amazon’s gateway to easy self-publishing. Whatever your opinion of Amazon, CreateSpace, and self-publishing in general, it’s a useful tool and fairly user friendly. I learned to use it to publish a book of my mother’s. Because the program is so popular, it was easy for someone like me to find tutorials on formatting and the like, so that I could use it to publish Mom’s Little Brown Bird. I then used CreateSpace to publish my own children’s book, Leonardo Da Bunni.
Leonardo was an interesting project. It sprung from the fact that I needed a present for a friend’s baby. Why not write them a book? So I did. My only real objective in self-publishing it was to have a snazzy copy of the book to give my friend’s baby. That some folks bought it was icing on the cake.
After my father passed away last April, I got to thinking about CreateSpace again. My dad had written a short account of his life back in 1987. I found it when I was going through his papers. The family enjoyed reading it. I also had a bunch of his old photos which some of the family had never seen.
I wondered how much it would cost to print a short book of my dad’s story and a bunch of photos. What followed was a twenty-six page book of story and photos that makes a lovely and professionally printed memento for his family and friends.
A memento that only cost me about three bucks a piece to have printed.
That’s the big deal. If I took a project like this to a printing company it would cost much more than that. Even if I wanted to copy the pages myself and put them in a binder or scrapbook, that’s going to be far more expensive. Average cost of a color copy at most places is around a buck a page. CreateSpace made it cheaper than buying color cartridges and printing the pages myself.
That’s got me thinking of other non-traditional projects I can use CreateSpace for. A photo album book of the Disney vacation my sweetie and I took with his family would make a nice Christmas gift. (Sorry, Curleys. Spoilers!) I also would love to print a family cookbook, not to try to sell–they are a dime a dozen out there–but just for my family to have and enjoy. There are other photo album projects I would enjoy doing. I’m playing with the idea of making one where the pages look like scrapbook pages.
So keep in mind that CreateSpace is a useful resource in and of itself. It’s not just for self-publishing books to sell to strangers.