Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Announcement from LULU

A friend of mine passed this along to me yesterday. He was not happy. I understand the improving quality bit and all that, but for customers who run small micro-presses through Lulu, this is a huge headache, and my understanding is that if you do not update your covers, your books won't be printed and sold. Any Lulus out there want to clarify? Since I am not a Lulu anymore, I have limited information here.

Edited to add: It also looks like Lulu is getting away from the DIY and into the subsidiary/vanity press market. I suppose they wanted to see some of that money as well. Makes me wonder what kind of staff they might be hiring for these services, and I hope it's better than their rather flimsy customer service. See here for more info.


We’re Improving Our Pocket Trim Size Books
Important Information Regarding Your Project

Dear Lulu Creator,
We are contacting you because you have published a book in our Pocket trim size (4.25" x 6.875") and created a one-piece cover for it. In the next few weeks, we will be improving this trim size by increasing the paper stock from 50# white stock to 60# white stock. This change will improve the quality of the books, but it will also affect the spine width since a thicker paper ultimately means a thicker spine.

On April 28, 2009, we will be switching to the new paper, and so you will need to create a new cover for the book. The new formula for calculating the spine width will be the number of pages in your book divided by 444. Please make any necessary alterations to your spine width to accommodate the new formula, and upload the new cover on April 28th.
We appreciate your business and thank you for choosing

Thank you for using Lulu!


Henry said...

When did this email go out: a week before they're making the change? Lulu just sucks with customer service, springing changes on people with no prior warning. This isn't the first time.

Cheryl Anne Gardner said...

I am not sure, my friend forwarded it to me but I didn't notice the send date on it and I don't have his original email anymore.

You are right, not the first time. I see they also made a lot of drastic changes to their distro programs and they are also getting into the subsidiary game with new "packages."

I want to know how much staff they have hired to do all this package work, and are the people even remotely qualified?

Shannon Yarbrough said...

Lots of Lulu roll-outs this month it seems. and now this. And have you seen this?

Dusk Peterson said...

Lulu has always been half subsidiary press, half DIY service. The only change I've noticed is that Lulu is now more blatant about its subsidiary-press side. However, it's still possible to work with Lulu and be completely DIY.

As for the change in trim size, I'm afraid that all companies tend to make changes that affect their prior customers. (Lightning Source has caused some headaches in that regard.) It certainly is a pain for the customer when that happens; hopefully, Lulu won't do this very often.