Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Taking a break from the blog

It seems the more time you spend dreaming up ideas for companies and products, the less time you have for family and friends... so I'm taking a short break from this blog—and dedicating more time to my loved ones.

Believe me, this is a good thing. It's difficult to cut things out of your life, but it's like trimming a fruit tree, or weeding a garden—your efforts are well rewarded.

And so it is, I'm signing off for now and will return when time permits... Hopefully, I'll have some great news to share when I do.

--Mash

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Fixed Layout EBooks on Apple iPad and iBookstore


Apple introduced a fixed-layout feature for the iPad and iPhone that makes it possible to reproduce beautiful, full-page illustrated childrens books. For months they kept it secret while testing the new layouts. But now they've given us access to the format and we have started the process of making FastPencil compatible with these new full-bleed childrens books.

Today, I'm happy to announce we've updated our system to support the new format on the Apple iPad for iBooks. There are a few extra steps necessary to get our default EPUB file ready for this format, but we can make the changes for you after publishing upon your request.

If you have an illustrated childrens book that you would like to distribute through the iPad and the Apple iBookstore follow these steps and we can get your book uploaded in a snap:

1. Export each page in your book as a JPG image, no larger than 1476x1970pixels. Use JPG compression of 85.

2. Make sure your images are in order from first to last by name. For example, page001.jpg, page002.jpg, page003.jpg and so forth.

3. Zip up your images and send them to us. You can email or we can give you a drop box to upload them, just contact FastPencil first.

4. Go to FastPencil.com and start a new eBook project but don't write in it. We will be using this empty project to upload your childrens book.

5. After we upload your files you can publish your ebook and purchase wide distribution.

6. Once we receive your order we will add our special fixed-layout codes to your ebook and send it to Apple for distribution through the iBookstore.

It's pretty easy, and you can get all this done for about $200 bucks!!! So jump in and try it out.

If you would rather not do-it-yourself, we can put together a package to help you through each step for under a grand.