... I discovered Blurb one wet August afternoon when NAH was away. This is a self-publishing application which includes the option to convert blog posts into a book. I downloaded the software, chose my book's size and layout options, then uploaded my blog posts into it and had a fabulous time editing my own 'book'.
As well as my ABC posts, I uploaded everything I'd written about Chippenham, together with all the comments. That initially gave me a book over 300 pages in length, which would have been hideously expensive. I finally plumped for the 120-160 page price point for my book and started editing accordingly.
I then had a look at the online help videos and altered the format of quite a few of my pages to add some variety. This freed up quite a bit of space and meant I could upload quite a few of my favourite Chippenham pictures from Sign of the Times too. Some of the blogged pictures weren't quite up to the resolution needed, so I had to reload quite a few of them using the originals. I also updated quite a few of the posts and edited them where necessary.
Then came picture captioning, writing the introduction, the sleeve notes, plus a simple reference section and an index of articles. I now have much more respect for these aspects of book production! NAH did the final proof reading which was invaluable.
It was a lot of fun to do and I'm thrilled with the result. I have no illusions that this is anything but a vanity project. The subject matter is too niche and the book too expensive for it to be considered a commercial enterprise. NB some of the other companies in this market do offer an ISBN option if you are thinking of self-publishing, Blurb doesn't.
I chose Blurb because it had the option to upload my blog posts and its pricing structure was much more understandable than the others I looked at. It has a wide variety of templates which made it much easier to make something a lot more professional looking. You can have a look at the whole of the end result here. I finished the project on New Year's Eve and used my mum's Christmas present money to buy my very own book :)
If you fancy making your own Blurb book, it's also worth looking around for discount coupons - I managed to find a 20% off introductory offer :)
Of course my book is already out of date (I rather like that it's a snapshot of a particular time), so you can read my updates of Chippenham's ongoing life and history in my dedicated All About Chippenham page.