Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bead Business: Self Publishing Your Secrets

So do you have a book inside you? Glass beadmaker and photographer, Val Cox did. Shown above working in her studio, Val has just self-published a luscious book entitled, Frit Secrets: A Flameworker's Guide to Using Reactive Glass Frits." Not only is Val the author but she's the photographer for her book - the photos of beads are to die for!

Believing that ABS readers may have a book just waiting to get out, I asked Val if she would share her experience in self-publishing. She graciously accepted. This is what Val had to say:

"The great thing about self-publishing is the total control. Control over the content, the number of pages, the photos, the final price and the time frame for completing it. I took nearly four years to research, write and photograph my "Frit Secrets" book. I suggest you don't take quite that long-it will make your family crazy.

One of scary parts of self-publishing is the need to pay the printing and binding costs yourself--up front. That's when it's smart to go with one of the many print-on-demand publishers, such as or where you can order only as many book as you need-and as few as a single copy.

I like Blurb because they provide a restrictive template design to work within, which becomes your best friend by the time you get to page 11. Trust me. Then within about a week of uploading your file, you receive in a mail, a beautifully bound book, or two or two hundred, to share with your friends and family. Maybe even sell a few."

Thanks for sharing with us, Val. All pictures are courtesy of Val Cox and if you're a glass beadmaker, you can read my review of her book on The Lampwork Diva Blog.

Written by Cindy Gimbrone, glass beadmaker, jewelry designer and newly energized frit lover.


LiPeony said...

Wow that's awesome... I love how she made a book detailing her own experiences and techniques and I never knew there were sites to get books made and printed. excellent article and very inspiring!

btw you've been tagged!

Anonymous said...

I can speak highly of Blurb as husband wrote a children's book for our kids and the kids did the illustrations...for Christmas. Great quality!

Bead-Mused said...

What a great post! Thank you so much, Cindy!


Caren said...

I did a Blurb book a couple years ago. It is one of my proud accomplishments. It takes about 3X longer to finish than you imagine, though, because you need to go over and over it again to make changes and corrections. And someone else needs to look at it for possible mistakes or lack of clarity.

Worth every minute, though.


Cindy Gimbrone said...

Val is a super-fab beadmaker and now this! She's a peach for sharing her insights.

Now everyone who has wanted to write a book - you've got a publisher ;-)


Anonymous said...

The book looks amazing! Can Val's next book be secrets on how she takes such beautiful bead pictures and how on earth she keeps her studio so clean?! :-)

rosebud101 said...

And Val's Frit Book is AWESOME!

Erin Siegel said...

Wow! Great post! Thanks for the info!

Melissa J. Lee said...

Great post - thank you!

Val Cox said...

wow, thank you Cindy, what fun!

For me, the start and final parts of writing and publishing a book are really enjoyable. The trick for me is to not get bogged down in the middle!

The next book I've started on is about photographing glass. Hopefully this one won't take me quite so long to finish.

Thank you Cindy for the lovely article and thank you all for the kind comments! Val

Anonymous said...

Wonderful Article!!! Thanks for sharing it...And Thanks Val for sharing your secrets!!! :-)

Melissa Villadiego said...

Congrats Val! It's a fantastic book and I can't wait for your one about photographing glass!

Deb said...

What a fabulous article & wonderful interview!
The syncronicity of this is funny - I was telling a friend how hopeless I am with frit the other night & she told me she has this book & that I have to get it, it's brilliant!

It's almost as if everything is pointing me in that direction to spend my wee Christmas stash on.

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