How to make a cookbook with Blurb BookSmart

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For many people summer is synonymous with cookouts. And with all that grilling, picnicking, and marinating, it’s a good time to take stock of your favorite recipes and make a cookbook. Not a designer? That’s ok, Blurb BookSmart is is an easy route to great cookbook. So

The best way to get started? Holding off a bit. It’s tempting to want to dive right in, but thinking a bit and getting organized is worth it in the end, trust us. Make the most of your time by dividing each step into chunks so you can tackle them at different points in  your book-making process.

And here we go:

newsletter get started 01 organize How to make a cookbook with Blurb BookSmart

  1. Organize: Gather your recipes and do a process of elimination. Once you’ve narrowed your favorites down, you can gather accompanying images—just make sure you’re giving the recipe and image files the same name to make it easier when it’s time to upload. Keep everything in one folder on your computer.
  2. Flow it: Next, determine how you want your cookbook story to flow. Do you want to sort your recipes by age, popularity, or even something else? Once you’ve determined the order, you’ll have done the bulk of your creative decision-making.
  3. Get the tool: Download our free book-making tool, BookSmart, choose your book size (Standard Portrait and Standard Landscape are the most popular for cookbooks) and input your title and author name. Then choose “Cookbook” as your starting point—this will give you the best layouts for the job. Then pick a source for your images—from iPhoto, your computer,  even Flickr or Picasa. Last, choose a theme. Now you’re ready to put together your cookbook.newsletter get started 02 flow tool layout How to make a cookbook with Blurb BookSmart
  4. Lay it out: This is where the real book-making comes in. BookSmart will provide you with 20 pages in our standard recipe layout, but you’ll find plenty of alternate layouts in the “Choose page layout” panel on the upper left. You can also add additional pages­­—including photo pages—by clicking “Add Pages” in the top toolbar.
  5. Just add copy: Our layouts provide space for stories, introductions, and those all-important ingredients and directions. Paste in your copy and you’re golden. Then garnish with photos. Remember to run BookSmart’s spell check feature.newsletter get started 03 copy preview order How to make a cookbook with Blurb BookSmart
  6. Preview and review: Click “Review book” and go through page by page. If you’re not a natural-born proofreader, ask a friend to take a second look.
  7. Order: Make any last minute edits, click “Order,” and follow the prompts to checkout. Remember to order extra copies for friends and family—or sell it in our Bookstore.

That’s it, you’re done. Give yourself a toast, a pat on the back, and a moment in the sun. Congratulations!

Get more expert tips on making and selling cookbooks in our July cookbook newsletter.

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2 Comments

  1. I have just finished putting together a recipe book for my boys. I really like the cookbook and wooden spoon picture at the top of this blog. How would I go about downloading at and wrapping at around the front and back cover pages? I don’t see that option.

    Thank you for your time.
    Michelle

    By Michelle
      November 11, 2013 – 6:28 pm   Permalink
  2. Congratulations on getting your book together! Unfortunately, we can’t let you download that image, as it’s the copyrighted work of one of a Blurb author (Megan Klementowski). You could try to find similar imagery from a stock photo website (like istockphoto.com).

    At the moment, BookSmart doesn’t offer imagery on the spine. You’d need to place part of the image on the front, part of it on the back, and then choose a spine background color that matches. It is something we’re working on, however.

    best

    Kent

    By Kent
      November 12, 2013 – 9:47 am   Permalink

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