In one week I will be celebrating my second blogiversary. (If you don’t remember my first blogiversary party it’s because I forgot to have it!) What better way to mark the occasion than to immortalize my blog in book form? Blurb.com just introduced BookSmart, an application that will automatically “slurp” up your blog and spit it out in book form. Dowloading the application is free and you can play around with the layout it as much as you like. So far only Typepad and WordPress blogs are supported, but other formats are in the works. The cost of printing seems reasonable for this sort of thing. I’ve been thinking about how to keep a record of my blog so I thought I’d at least give the program a try.
I set BookSmart slurping and the first message I got was “Whoa! That’s some blog you’ve got!” Their maximum size is 440 pages, and since I have 430 posts (!), I have some editing to do. Out goes everything under World Cup and Amusements and Distractions. That gets it down to 354 pages. I’m sure I can do better than that.
So far BookSmart is slow in working with this many posts, and there doesn’t seem to be any way to make layout changes on multiple pages. I don’t like the default layout (all images as thumbnails in the margin) and manually setting the layout for two or three hundred pages doesn’t sound like a good use of my time. The real problem is that the posts can’t be laid out as they are on screen, with text and graphics mixed. Images have to be either above, below, or beside the block of text. Also, each post is assigned its own page, which often leaves wasted space at the bottom, meaning that you could end up paying for quite a bit of blank paper. This makes me wonder if it is really worth the effort and expense for a blog that was never intended to be an immortal work of art. It might be simpler and cheaper to get my archives laser printed and spiral-bound at my friendly neighbourhood office supply store. It would be fun to be able to look back some day at this strange thing we call blogging, but perhaps low(er) tech is good enough for posterity.