Frequently Asked Questions


Blog Fetching

Which blog hosts are compatible?

We currently support Wordpress (including third-party hosts and self-hosted using the wordpress.org distribution), Blogger (sometimes refered to as Blogspot) and Squarespace (v7 only, the current version). Together these cover approximately 70% of all blogs.

Unsupported blog hosts may work to different degrees. Sometimes older posts will not be found or the content may be incomplete. We are always working to improve compatibility and welcome feedback!

Why can’t it find any posts for my Squarespace blog?

Make sure you point the indexer at your blog which may be on a sub-path of your site, eg: http://myblog.squarespace.com/blog. Unfortunately, not all Squarespace sites have a blog, or have more than one, and the blog is not always at the root location.

What about Squarespace v5?

Squarespace has defaulted to v7 since 2014 so most recent blogs should be using it. If you are still on v5, consider upgrading to v7. Squarespace have a useful guide to upgrading.

My blog content has changed, how do I refresh my book preview?

In the “My Books” page, next to your book listing you can select "Refresh from Blog" from the Actions drop down list. This will initiate re-indexing of your blog and incorporation of new posts and changed content into your book.

If you have introduced new posts, then you should view your book, select “Pick Posts” and check that your new posts are included in the current selection. Once you have completed Pick Posts, the preview will update with your new posts.

For updated posts, the preview will rebuild automatically.


Layout

Can I edit my text or photos?

Sorry - in order to keep the process simple and quick we do not support any editing of the text and photos or any control over the layout of each page. Our aim is to do a good job of this, automatically - if we fall short, please let us know and we will do our best to improve our system’s handling of your blog.

To edit your text or photos, we encourage you to make these edits in your blog and then Refresh your book preview from the blog. See refreshing your book from your blog for more details.

How can I reduce the number of pages?

The automated layout system gives no control over the layout so the only way forward is to either reduce the page count by excluding certain posts or to split the book into multiple volumes.

To reduce the number of posts included in the book, use the “Pick Posts” dialog to narrow the date range, narrow the included categories or to exclude individual posts.

To create multiple volumes, see below.

How can I create multiple volumes?

To make multiple volumes, first create your first volume, narrowing the number of posts as above, say to a specific date range. When you are happy with the volume, go to the “My Books” page and select the "Duplicate" action for the book. This will create a new project that is exactly the same. Open this new book and then set a new date range and check that it is still less than 300 pages.

When creating multiple volumes, you should will want to add the volume information to the Title, Subtitle or even Author field (eg: “Volume 1” or “2018” or “France”). We recommend making it part of the Title or Author field as these will also show on the spine.

In addition, when deciding on where to split into multiple volumes, consider how the pages will balance between the volumes. Having similar page counts in each volume will mean they are the same thickness and will look nice together on a shelf.


Cover

How can I change the cover image?

Click the “Customise Covers” button to open the Customise Covers dialog. Here you can enter the URL of your image in the "Custom Image" field. It will take the place of the default mosaic of images so landscape or square format will work best. Make sure it is a good quality, high resolution image.

To find the URL of an image, use your browser to locate the desired image on your blog (or elsewhere on the web). It must be publicly accessible without the need for any password. Click through the image until you come to the highest resolution (largest!) version of the photo that you have. Right click on the image and select “Copy image address” and paste this URL into the “Custom Image” field. Click "Done" and wait for the cover preview to refresh.

How can I add formating or images to the blurbs?

The Front, Title-Page and Back Blurbs support a subset of html. In the "Customise Covers" dialog you can enter (well-formed) html directly into the blurb fields. For example “My year in <b>Spain</b>” will have Spain in bold.

Are the photos ever cropped?

Sometimes, some photos may be cropped a small amount where it is necesary for them to fit neatly in the page layout. For example, if a photo is a good candidate to be used as a full-page image then it will be positioned to fill the page completely even if this means cutting off small parts of the image from the sides or bottom. This generally gives a better result than if the photo were printed smaller with black bars around it to fill the gaps. If the photo is too different from the page’s aspect ratio, then the photo is not cropped and bars are used anyway.

Sometimes, we may also crop an image to be slightly smaller so that we can fit more text on the page. This is only done where there is a small amount of text left on the last page of an article with a lot of white space. Squeezing this text back onto the other article pages removes this whitespace and also saves a page making the book cheaper!

In addition, note that where there is limited space, very long photo captions may also be truncated to approximately 20 words. The missing parts of the caption will be replaced with an ellipsis…


Troubleshooting

Why is my book building slowly?

We run our service on a world-class computing infrastructure with lightning speed and connectivity. It is possible that our servers are overloaded by the number of customers but we are quick to scale if this becomes apparent.

More likely, it is your blog host that is the bottleneck. We have seen this on several occasions, particularly with self-hosted blogs. We do need to download a lot of content from your blog and some servers are slow or have rate limits. Sorry, you may need to get a coffee and come back.

What is Expert Mode?

You are not an expert.

Print the Book of your Blog!