Starting today, Blurb, a digital self-publishing platform previously limited to print and e-books, is offering a plug-in for Adobe InDesign users that lets them create sleek-looking magazines and brochures in both print and electronic formats. Rather than rely on a professional printer’s minimum order requirement, a user can print a single issue of a magazine starting at around $11 per copy. While still not cheap for those who want to make a profit from their publication, it offers a more streamlined way of production, according to CEO Ellen Gittins: “[Magazines] will be much faster to produce, but more community-driven and with more issues.”
What’s the Big Idea?
The book self-publishing market has been going strong for a while now, accommodating writers whose works don’t interest traditional publishers. Magazine publishing is even more difficult to do on one’s own. By offering the plug-in (and, eventually, its own separate publishing software), Blurb hopes to provide a resource for what Gittins calls the “accidental author” as well as small businesses. “[T]his is now possible to do…You can now [publish magazines and brochures] in house, do a short run, without a big budget.”