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The Cooks Palate Blog

Entries in cookbook printing (2)

Thursday
Sep202012

Is self-publishing a cookbook right for you?

It seems many folks cannot imagine how the process of making a cookbook actually works and what is involved.  I think when the process is broken down you will be able to envision it and see that anyone can make a cookbook with the right manuscript creation tools and a little planning.

Most anyone who wants to write a cookbook knows who the target audience is.  It is either for the family, a fund raiser or as income to the author.  However, what most people don’t know is that one type of book doesn’t preclude another.  You can prepare a cookbook as a soft cover, black and white book and sell it through Amazon and bookstores for free.  You can then use the same cookbook manuscript file to make a full color, hard cover coffee table version for your family and friends at no additional cost.  It is very cost effective to repurpose a book manuscript in multiple printed formats: hard cover, soft cover, wire bound, Black and -white, mixed color, full color, eBook, etc.  You can have an ISBN or not depending on your distribution goals.

Once you decide which recipes would be most appropriate for your audience, the rest of the process just follows along.  You can add or delete recipes at any time until you actually print the book, so don’t worry about being accurate and comprehensive in your recipe selection starting out.  Enter the recipes in a software program like the Cook’s Palate.  You can enter them without regard to where they will end up in the book.  The Cooks Palate automatically scales recipes for the proper number of servings and analyzes nutrition as desired.  Since it takes between 10-15 minutes to enter a recipe you can estimate how long it will take to enter all recipes for the book.  For example to enter 100 recipes at 15 minutes each you can enter 4 recipes in 1 hour.  In this case, it will take (100/4=25) 25 hours or less for each 100 recipes. 

Now, to organize the chapter sections of your cookbook, enter a chapter name and add recipes to it. Once recipes are associated with chapters, you can import the draft manuscript from The Cooks Palate into The Publisher, which is basically an editor like MS Word.  This is where you prepare the pysical layout of the manuscript. 

In the Publisher, you use templates to design the layout for the intended output formats:  hard cover, soft cover, wire bound, black and white, full color, e-Book etc.  You select a physical size, common cookbook page types that you want to include (Index, Table of Contents, Forward, Acknowledgements, etc).  You can insert images and an index which is automatically built from your manuscript design.  pictures. You can also include any stories that you want, such as family history, background of the recipe, how the diet works, etc.  Once teh manuscript is completed, you can export the manuscript file and submit it to us for printing.  We will choose the right printer for the right book format for you.  Our printers include, among others, Amazon and Ingram the two most prominent printers, and all specialize in library quality books.

A self-published cookbook is within reach of anyone motivated enough to write one.  Wouldn’t a family cookbook make a great Christmas present in 2012?

Monday
Sep122011

Family Cookbooks Make Great Holiday Gifts

 

I know it is early September.  I know it is still summer.  I know it is hot outside.  But the kids are back in school, and before you know it, we will be in the holiday season.  Time to consider a great family gift - a family cookbook.  Now is the perfect time to get started.   To many people making a cookbook seems like an insurmountable task.  Here are some thoughts on getting started.

With the Cook’s Palate software you can enter recipes without regard to where they will end up in the finished cookbook.  To get a feel for the scope of the project, you can estimate that it will take 10-15 minutes to enter each recipe.  So if you have about 200 recipes, it will take about 50 total hours to get the recipes entered.  To see how long it will take, divide the number of recipes by four and to estimate the recipe entry time.  When the recipes are entered,  it takes just a few minutes to organize the cookbook.  Just enter the name of your first chapter and select all of the recipes for that chapter.  The Cooks Palate organizes and alphabetizes the chapter automatically.  Repeat for each chapter.

Once the recipes are entered and organized in chapters, you can move on to the Publisher software to prepare a manuscript suitable for printing.  In the Publisher set-up section, simply choose things like the size, binding type, cover, and the basic fonts and layout for the recipes in the cookbook.  Select from 15 professionally designed page templates to insert pages such as chapter pages, a table of contents, a forward section or an order page.  These pages are inserted in the book and can be edited to customize your book.  The Publisher even creates an index that cross references recipes by main ingredient or meal type or any other key word you choose.

With the book content complete, now you can do the fun stuff.  To add pictures of recipes or decorative artwork, just click your curser where you want the picture to be inserted.  You can then move it, or re-size it.  To edit fonts, colors and styles you can make the change you want in one recipe and, if you like, apply the change to all recipes automatically.  

When you have formatted the manuscript he way you want it, you can upload the file to us for printing.  Depending on the type of book, printing can take from 10 days to about 3 weeks.  If you are planning on creating a holiday cookbook, you should submit your manuscript before Thanksgiving to meet your deadline.