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Taerak's Void
(Book One of Fantastica)
A new series by multiple award winning author, M. R. Mathias

After finding a strange medallion and some maps with markings that no one in his village can understand, Braxton Bray decides to take it all to the Hall of Scholars in the kingdom's capital. But greed is everywhere. Braxton and a tough young female caravan guard named Nixy are forced to run for their lives, for someone else wants what Braxton found and is willing to go to great lengths to take it from him.

With a hefty, kingdom wide, bounty on their heads, not even the great wizards of the Sorcerious can help them. Left with nothing but each other, Braxton and Nixy have no choice but to get on a ship and go on an adventure that will take them places they would have otherwise never imagined. Elves, dwarves, giant gothicans, and trolls, treacherous forests on distant shores, love, death, terror, and magic all await...

Author Topic: Vellum: the official thread  (Read 122827 times)  

Offline Shei Darksbane

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #100 on: August 14, 2015, 05:32:19 PM »
Adding to the "We want it on Windows!" crowd. I'm a happy Windows user. I'd love to have Vellum as an option. But alas. :c

Offline SugarBear57

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #101 on: August 14, 2015, 05:33:26 PM »
Adding to the "We want it on Windows!" crowd. I'm a happy Windows user. I'd love to have Vellum as an option. But alas. :c
I'm a big fan of Vellum and use it for all of my books. Some of my friends have bought Macs ONLY because they need it for Vellum. It's honestly worth it. It saves so much time.

That said, I haven't really had a problem when I go to another Amazon store in another country. For example, if I look for one of my books in the UK, then there's a little banner at the top that asks me if I want to go to Amazon.com. Same goes in Amazon.jp or Amazon.fr. So while of course it's ideal to automatically direct customers straight to your product page in the appropriate country, Amazon itself will try to do it if you land on a product page for an Amazon store that's not in your country.

Offline Brad Andalman

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #102 on: August 14, 2015, 05:53:17 PM »
Hope there is an easy workaround for you.

Just wanted to follow-up and say that we've rolled out a fix to our backend that we hope will prevent these "timeout" errors. Now, if the location service we use is down or slow, the link will just use your default Amazon store.
Brad Andalman. Co-founder of 180g, creators of Vellum.

Offline Steve Voelker

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #103 on: August 14, 2015, 06:16:17 PM »
I know someone who bought a Mac just for Vellum as well.
Between that and iTunes producer, it makes a cheap mac a good investment for an indie author.
To me, Vellum just has that Mac feel to it.
You see how everyone dislikes the Windows version of Scrivener. I'd hate to have a second class version of Vellum out there. :)

Offline Boyd

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #104 on: August 14, 2015, 07:56:25 PM »
Any rumors of when Vellum will help us out with POD books?

PS, add me to the crowd of new MAC people because of this program.

Offline D. Zollicoffer

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #105 on: September 05, 2015, 10:14:38 AM »
I want to buy this software (played with the demo and I love it), but I'm running into one major problem.

Can you make the font larger, in the text editor window?

My eyes are bad, like really bad, and the text is tiny. I want to edit my books using the app (before exporting). But I can't read anything inside the editor. Also, Command + doesn't work.

If this isn't a feature, it should be one. Blind people like me need a way to increase the font size in the editor :(
« Last Edit: September 05, 2015, 10:16:24 AM by D. Zollicoffer »

Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #106 on: September 05, 2015, 10:26:26 AM »
If this isn't a feature, it should be one. Blind people like me need a way to increase the font size in the editor :(

Hi D. We hear you, and we've got something coming soon. Stay tuned, and thanks for the feedback!
Brad West. Co-founder of 180g, Creators of Vellum

Offline Monique

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #107 on: September 05, 2015, 10:29:57 AM »
Am thoroughly loving Vellum (I'm in the beta).

Requests would be the usual. More ability to customize and a few more choices for templates, but most of all PRINT. If you could manage to create a good Createspace-friendly pdf at 6x9, I'd marry you. :)

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Offline D. Zollicoffer

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #108 on: September 05, 2015, 10:39:25 AM »
Hi D. We hear you, and we've got something coming soon. Stay tuned, and thanks for the feedback!
Thanks for the fast reply. I'll definitely be picking it up soon (the unlimited option). I want my new books to look pretty :)

Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #109 on: September 05, 2015, 03:15:56 PM »
Am thoroughly loving Vellum (I'm in the beta).

Requests would be the usual. More ability to customize and a few more choices for templates, but most of all PRINT. If you could manage to create a good Createspace-friendly pdf at 6x9, I'd marry you. :)

Hi Monique,

Since you're in the beta, you know we've been working on some new features for ebooks (many of them driven by user requests and suggestions!), so our focus right now is getting those finalized and available to every one.

But we always like hearing that print would be a valuable addition, especially since it would be a significant undertaking for us.

Thanks for the feedback, and glad to hear you're loving Vellum!

P.S. Boyd, sorry we didn't answer you sooner, but hope this answers your question as well.

Brad West. Co-founder of 180g, Creators of Vellum

Offline Boyd

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #110 on: September 05, 2015, 03:38:09 PM »
Hi Monique,

Since you're in the beta, you know we've been working on some new features for ebooks (many of them driven by user requests and suggestions!), so our focus right now is getting those finalized and available to every one.

But we always like hearing that print would be a valuable addition, especially since it would be a significant undertaking for us.

Thanks for the feedback, and glad to hear you're loving Vellum!

P.S. Boyd, sorry we didn't answer you sooner, but hope this answers your question as well.



It does... I as well, would have your babies, if you can provide print on demand support in formatting ;D

Offline Brad West

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #111 on: September 05, 2015, 03:48:36 PM »
It does... I as well, would have your babies, if you can provide print on demand support in formatting ;D

I've logged this in our database.
Brad West. Co-founder of 180g, Creators of Vellum

Offline Monique

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #112 on: September 05, 2015, 03:56:35 PM »

Monique Martin | author website | facebook | twitter

Offline KinkyWriter

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #113 on: September 05, 2015, 04:02:25 PM »
If only if they were cheaper or had a monthly plan option :(


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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #114 on: September 05, 2015, 04:10:10 PM »
Vellum seriously sounds like the name of a Pokemon.

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Offline Boyd

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #115 on: September 05, 2015, 04:13:41 PM »
I've logged this in our database.

lolol.

Offline blubarry

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #116 on: September 05, 2015, 05:15:10 PM »
Wait... babies will get us the ability to use Vellum for print? Throw mine in, too! Vellum is awesome, and I'm loving the easy ability to create box sets in the beta. One of the best pieces of software I use.

Offline WDR

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #117 on: September 07, 2015, 07:32:27 AM »
Okay, I'll throw my hat into the ring: I'd also like to see Vellum add a "To Print" option.

Authors

Keep in mind that there are some standards the book manufacturers adhere to when printing a book. The standard reference book format model used by book manufacturers is the U.S. Trade 9x6 hardcover book. This is why in all my posts about print, I always start with the US Trade 9x6 as my example. Everything else is merely a variation thereof, whether you change, add, or remove features, size, format, etc., the price for printing a book will go up or down from that standard point.

Once you have the XY dimensions of your book set, the Z-axis of your book (the thickness) will be determined by the number of pages and the type of paper used. The number of pages will be driven primarily by the font size.

The standard font size used in a 9x6 US Trade is 11.5 points. Children's books, beginning reader books, and books for the sight-impaired generally use a larger font. If your document is huge, then a smaller font can be used to reduce the number of pages (and thereby the weight and cost of the printing), but that can lead to eye-strain and make your book difficult to read. Using a larger font to make a short book have more pages is considered amateurish and ill-advised.

In smaller-format books (the venerable "Paperback", known in the industry as a pocket book), a smaller font size is generally selected to keep the thickness of the book to a minimum.

A book manufacturer and a POD facility such as Createspace will give you guidance on what settings the recommend for their given printing process.

One of the numbers they give you is based on the paper type you choose for your printing. The paper has a thickness to it and when that thickness is applied to the number of pages, you will know the spine thickness of your book.

The spine thickness can affect your cover art! If you have a wraparound cover, you need to take the spine thickness into account. It is best when working with an artist that the artist create an image that is slightly larger than what will actually be used. This gives you same wiggle room to shift the image around so it fits one size format or another.

The spine thickness (Z) and XY dimensions of your book will affect the margins inside your book. The inner margins must be made larger or smaller depending on the resulting spine thickness for the given format you are going to print. If your book is thick, you will need a larger inner-margin so your text won't be lost in the center fold. If your book is thin, you don't want a huge amount of white space in between the pages (waste of paper and money and it looks ugly). The outer-margin and the top- & bottom- margins must nicely balance the inner margin. If the perceived thickness is different, the reader will find looking at your book to be unpleasant. This will effect how they perceive your story as being good or bad.

This is why good typography is so vital! An awesome book can be destroyed by bad typesetting. If it is unpleasant or straining to the eye, the reader will emotionally and subjectively view your book as not being that good. And as we all know, that can affect your sales. This is why I like Vellum so much, because the program allows me to generate a well-typeset ebook for readers.

When you talk to a book manufacturer or set up your book with a POD printer such as Createspace, pay extremely close attention to the recommended settings they give you for formatting your book. If you wish to deviate from those recommendations for artistic purposes, that is your choice.

For the Brads at Vellum (and authors):

Your customers are going to come back with two primary numbers: the font size and a numberI'll call it Zused to multiply the number of pages to determine spine thickness.

Z is based on the thickness of the paper being used for print. This number varies from time to time, because the paper stock being used can vary from lot to lot. One-tenth of a millimeter might seem minuscule, but over 400 pages of print that becomes another 4mm of thickness. Because Z will change each time a printer gets a new shipment of paper stock, it is unlikely that the PDF generated for one print run can be reused for another print run.

These changes will affect the margin settings of the book. Margin settings for the outer-, top-, and bottom-margins will generally remain the same depending on the X-Y format. But the varying thickness of a book will change the inner-margin setting. The inner-margin should be able to be calculated on the fly and automatically set, but this might vary depending on the book manufacturer's or POD printer's process. So you might want to make this a third variable that the author can use to override an automatic setting.

To ALL:

I recommend you actually contact a book manufacturer and discuss with them what they need to be set up for a successful print run.

A book manufacturer is how the industry refers to a large-scale printing facility that prints books for commercial sale using offset or other printing methods.

If you are looking for a printer to create your books for you and you enter "Book Printer" as your search query, you will get listed every local and sub-standard business document printer; shops that really can't handle the quality printing of a commercial book. You should enter "Book Manufacturer" and that will yield the results you are looking for.

In the United States, there are only about 35 book manufacturers.

Offset printing is significantly cheaper than you think! For 1,000 US Trade hardcover books with dust jacket, it can be less than $5.75 per book. Softcover books will be even cheaper. The problem is, you have to front all the money for the print run. POD printing is done on a book-by-book basis and requires no front money, but is much more expensive if you want a box of books to autograph at a public event. If you think you can sell all those books, then it might be worth your money to go directly to a book manufacturer for your printing needs.

Book manufacturers get it! They are much more open to self-publishing authors today than they were even ten years ago. Lets face it, do you want to be printing for only 5 big customers who could easily shut you down if you don't agree to their pricing requirements? Or be working with thousands? Most book manufacturers will give you the same printing costs they give the Big-5. Having many smaller customers is more lucrative and stable than having just five big ones (with big attitudes to match).

The book manufacturer I am working with completely blew away my expectations when I contacted them. I couldn't believe how low their pricing was compared to what I was expecting. Much of what I note above, I learned from this printer. They even offer POD printing services. I initially dismissed POD printing, but now that I am seriously considering it, I aim to get a quote from them so I can compare my costs to Createspace. They use an industrial inkjet printing system, not laser printing, so the pages are actually ink-in-fiber, not toner-on-top. If I can save three or four dollars per book on POD printing, that could be the way to go when I am visiting book clubs, reading groups, or conventions where I want to sell books.

(Soap-box powers, deactivate!)
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Offline Rickie Blair

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #118 on: September 07, 2015, 07:47:52 AM »
Wait... babies will get us the ability to use Vellum for print? Throw mine in, too! Vellum is awesome, and I'm loving the easy ability to create box sets in the beta. One of the best pieces of software I use.
No babies, sorry, but I've got a really cranky cat you can have. Just tell me where to mail her.

The Leafy Hollow Mysteries series is now available!
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Offline thesmallprint

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #119 on: September 07, 2015, 09:19:28 AM »
That's a great post, William, thanks.

Adding my vote for print (minus the babies)

Offline rcasey

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #120 on: September 07, 2015, 09:24:30 AM »
Another vote for print. Please!

Offline Steve Voelker

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #121 on: September 07, 2015, 11:34:37 AM »
If only if they were cheaper or had a monthly plan option :(



A monthly plan would be TERRIBLE!
I would hate to have one more monthly fee to pay until the end of time.
Vellum will help with every book you ever write, and it only costs as much a cover for one!
For what it does, Vellum is reasonably priced, especially if you catch them during a discount. But even if you don't, think about the cost per book compared to hiring someone to format for you, or the hours you might spend fiddling around with other software for an inferior result.
If you only ever plan on publishing one book, I guess it's a little steep. But once you get a few books under your belt, that per book cost starts to look pretty good!

If they manage to add in a print formatting option, this would be THE killer app for indie authors.

I would MUCH rather see that than any attempt at a windows version. A single version, on a single platform, that does its job extremely well, is good enough!

Multiple platforms will only add to development and support times, and devalue the overall product. Some of the best things about Vellum are the responsiveness of the support and the constant innovation and improvement. I would hate to see them get bogged down with the development headache that is windows.
« Last Edit: September 07, 2015, 11:39:57 AM by Voelker58 »

Offline Alan Petersen

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #122 on: September 07, 2015, 12:57:14 PM »
A monthly plan would be TERRIBLE!
I would hate to have one more monthly fee to pay until the end of time.
Vellum will help with every book you ever write, and it only costs as much a cover for one!
For what it does, Vellum is reasonably priced, especially if you catch them during a discount. But even if you don't, think about the cost per book compared to hiring someone to format for you, or the hours you might spend fiddling around with other software for an inferior result.
If you only ever plan on publishing one book, I guess it's a little steep. But once you get a few books under your belt, that per book cost starts to look pretty good!

If they manage to add in a print formatting option, this would be THE killer app for indie authors.

I would MUCH rather see that than any attempt at a windows version. A single version, on a single platform, that does its job extremely well, is good enough!

Multiple platforms will only add to development and support times, and devalue the overall product. Some of the best things about Vellum are the responsiveness of the support and the constant innovation and improvement. I would hate to see them get bogged down with the development headache that is windows.

I agree. So many things are going down the subscription model.

I believe Vellum has an option for $30 for one book, which seems reasonable, you should be able to make that back by selling 15-30 books (depending on price). Especially with the money saved in hiring a formatter or spending hours doing it yourself.  I realize we have a lot of expenses with covers, editing, etc. but you can go that route until your making more enough to buy the multi-license version or the unlimited version.

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #123 on: September 07, 2015, 01:00:37 PM »
I've logged this in our database.

YES, PLEASE!!!!  :-* :-* :-* :-* :-*

Offline Boyd

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Re: Vellum: the official thread
« Reply #124 on: September 07, 2015, 01:17:59 PM »
YES, PLEASE!!!!  :-* :-* :-* :-* :-*

Wait, I really can't biologically give him babies.  I was ... er... nevermind!

But if Vellum can provide POD (print on demand) formatting as well you will see a massive influx of people buying or renting MAC's and buying Vellum.  I'd buy stock in Apple if that happens ;D