This is a first for the iStudio Blog - a post written by a user, Brandon Davis Jennings, and providing a user's perspective. Brandon is an author, whose recent Battle Rattle Kindle Single (published by Amazon) was an Indie Pick of the Month for August, and was selected as a Best Book of the Year so Far by Amazon! Brandon has kindly agreed to share his experiences of using iStudio Publisher to design his book Battle Rattle for CreateSpace, for publishing in paper copy. Many thanks Brandon, and over to you... More
The iStudio Blog
Several users have contacted us recently to ask if iStudio Publisher can be used to design and create book PDFs suitable for self-publishing with CreateSpace. CreateSpace is an Amazon company that prints books and makes books available on Amazon.com. We have investigated CreateSpace's PDF requirements and are happy to report the answer is “yes”!
If you're a budding author we thought you might appreciate this brief overview of the main considerations in using iStudio Publisher to produce CreateSpace compliant PDF files. On this CreateSpace webpage there's a link to download the CreateSpace PDF Submission Specification. Most of the CreateSpace specification requires no commentary, but here's a short a walk through some topics that have provoked iStudio Publisher related questions.
Embedded Fonts (page 19) and Image Resolution (page 23)
iStudio Publisher exports print-quality PDF files containing full resolution images and embedded font subsets, but doesn’t currently include any PDF configuration options. This website FAQ discusses the characteristics of PDF files exported from iStudio Publisher.
Transparency/Layers (page 23)
iStudio Publisher doesn’t flatten transparent objects, but this will generally be fine as the CreateSpace specification states that “We will attempt to flatten transparencies in the review process and reject if unsuccessful”. If required, as a workaround, export your iStudio Publisher document to PDF file and use Adobe Acrobat Pro to process the PDF file into the required format. There's a free trial of Adobe Acrobat Pro available here.
Basic PDF Requirements (page 27)
PDFs submitted to CreateSpace must be single page (not a spread or 2-Up). After creating your book document export it to PDF file by choosing menu option File > Export Document as PDF (i.e. don’t choose menu option File > Export Document as Booklet PDF).
Bleed (page 34)
Bleed is required if images extend to the page edges. If you have created your document in Spread Editing mode set the bleed to 0.125” on the Top, Bottom, and Outside, but set the Inside bleed to zero.
Bleed and crop marks can be enabled and set up on the Document Inspector, and get added when you export to PDF file by choosing menu option File > Export Document as PDF. When you add bleed, the bleeds are added outside the finished page size. The bleeds are shown as red lines on the document window. You should size and position any images that are to extend to the page edges so that they at least reach, or extend beyond, the red bleed lines.
Don’t choose the iStudio Publisher option to add crop marks as CreateSpace requires PDFs to be submitted without crop marks.
Margins (page 36)
To satisfy the minimum CreateSpace margin requirements set the page margins in your iStudio Publisher document to 0.25” for the Top, Bottom, and Outside page margins, and the Inside page margin according to the number of pages in your book, and as specified in the table on page 36. Keep all of your document content within these page margins (apart from any images that extend to the red bleed lines). Note that CreateSpace will accept 0.25” for the Top, Bottom, and Outside page margins, but recommend at least 0.5”.
To set different inside and outside margins in a iStudio Publisher document you will need to set it up for spread editing (rather than as a series of single standalone pages).
Cover (page 53)
Create your book cover as a separate one page document with a custom paper size having one dimension equal to two page widths plus the spine wide, and the other dimension equal to the page height.
iStudio Publisher incorporates the standard Mac OS X Page Setup dialog, which supports setting any standard or custom paper size. When entering a custom paper size enter the smaller dimension as the Width and the larger dimension as the Height. Change the page orientation from portrait to landscape via the Orientation control on the Page Setup dialog, as required. For more information refer to help page Page Setup Dialog.Becoming a published author is really quite achievable, and we hope this post has given you confidence to get started. Happy authoring!
We're getting very close to completing iStudio Publisher 1.3. It's taken longer than we hoped, but we're really excited about the new additions and think you’ll love them too.
Here's a preview of some of the exciting new features coming your way.
We've listened closely to your feedback, and this update includes the features you've consistently been asking for. It also includes many other improvements and tweaks.
For the latest news about iStudio Publisher 1.3 connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.
Finally, a huge thank you for your kind words, comments and suggestions.
The iStudio Team
iStudio Publisher received a couple of very complimentary reviews recently and we'd like to share them with you.
The first review is from the guys at MACHOW2. It's an article reviewing several apps and solutions that provide similar functionality to Microsoft Publisher, but on the Mac. iStudio Publisher fares very well, and here's a quote from the review:
“iStudio Publisher is an extremely user friendly and powerful alternative to Publisher on Mac. It produces very professional results and yet is very easy to get started with thanks to the well thought out video tutorials and Quick Start Guide.”
Check out the full article here: Microsoft Publisher for Mac: Best Alternatives Publisher. It's worth checking out their website for other excellent reviews too. Thanks guys!
The second review is a YouTube video made by one of our users, Richie Vitale. Richie is a very prominent jazz trumpeter based in the US, and also a computer enthusiast. We're really pleased that he's taken the time to show off some of iStudio Publisher's features in his video. You can watch it here: iStudio Publisher Review by Richie Vitale. Thanks Richie, great job.
The iStudio Team
After many requests, we're very excited to announce our launch on Facebook and Twitter.
Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter to stay informed of all the latest news, updates, and important issues, and to get access to promotions and discounts.
You can also send us a message - we’d love to hear from you!
We recently launched a series of iStudio Publisher tips and tricks via Facebook and Twitter, aimed at providing you with small nuggets of information to really speed up your productivity and workflow.
Over the coming weeks we'll be tweeting and posting these on a regular basis, so if you're interested in receiving them head over to our Facebook and Twitter pages and Like/Follow us. Look out for #iStudioTips.
Here's one we posted earlier...
Here's a tip to really speed up your workflow with iStudio Publisher. At the bottom left of each document window you'll find the zoom controls. To quickly zoom in to one or more selected shapes for detailed examination or editing, click the "Zoom to Selected Shapes" icon.
If you find these tips useful, please let us know and we'll keep them coming. We'd love to hear what you think!
To run iStudio Publisher on OS X 10.11 El Capitan, you must install the latest iStudio Publisher 1.2.1, which is available as a free update. Everyone should update, irrespective of the version of OS X you are running.
iStudio Publisher is available as an App Store Edition (available from the Mac App Store) and a Website Download Edition (includes all licensing options we sell from our website store). You will need to update whichever edition you're using.
You can update the App Store Edition via the App Store, or update the Website Download Edition by checking for updates via the Help menu. Users occasionally report having installation problems, which is discussed here.
Fresh installs are available from here:
We’re pleased to announce the release of the Website Download Edition of iStudio Publisher 1.2.1, which is available as a free update to all existing users. To update simply launch your existing copy of iStudio Publisher and accept the update option, which should appear automatically, or else check for updates via the Help menu.
iStudio Publisher 1.2.1 is a maintenance release, which includes critical fixes for running on Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan, along with some other minor fixes and improvements.
For users of the App Store Edition, we have submitted this to Apple. Once Apple have completed their review process you will be able to get it for free via the App Store update mechanism. Note that your App Store purchase won't enable you to license the Website Download Edition, so please wait for the App Store Edition to become available.