I am using my blog to document my renovation project. When I first moved into this house I documented my renovations and self published it. I now have a permanent copy of my house trials and tribulations and the history is documents. I was fortunate enough to meet my neighbors who were here from the time the house was built and they gave me the lowdown on everything. The first time I did this manually. I plan to do another book, this time exporting my blog. That is why I am so wordy and documenting everything and adding personal thoughts. I am building a story. I did a search to find out how to publish my blog and I stumbled upon this free program. I have played with it a few times. Once I actually use it for my book I will make a contribution to them. At this time I don’t plan to sell this book , I am only doing this for myself, but you can use it for whatever you want. I have several books that I self published and everything significant in my life will eventually be in a book and passed down through my family. That will be my legacy. This also encourages me to talk about what I am doing, what I am thinking, talk about people who helped (or didn’t) and take a lot of pictures. LOL Its my book so I am making it what I want!!
Okay so here is the process.
STEP ONE: you have to export your blog in xml format. You do this through WordPress (blogger has their own instructions but since I use WordPress this is what I am going to explain.
Go to your dashboard and press tools on the left and choose the sub menu item export
On the option page choose the free export option then it is going to ask you what you want to export. I chose to export All Content because I even want comments from others included. Now choose Download Export file. Next you get an option to open the file or save it. If you choose open you get a file that makes no sense. I have no idea what that file is nor how to use it and I am not really wanting to take the time to learn but if you know how to use it….feel free to share. I chose to save the file. I use Firefox so it puts all my downloads in the download folder. I can get to that by going to start/computer/downloads. The file is going to be named your web address the date. I find that convenient because I played with this a few times and I don’t want to get my versions mixed up. Really I should just delete the old files but I am lazy.
Go to http://www.blogbooker.com/ You will notice on that page you can use it to create a free PDF file for Blogger, WordPress or Live Journal. Again I use WordPress so I am only addressing WordPress.
Click on WordPress and it takes you to a page that asks you to tell it where your XML file is and what your web address is for your blog. BEFORE you click create Blog book go down and look at the options (really the options should be above the button but its okay we are not that lazy we can’t scroll down).
As far as the features are concerned I use the default options EXCEPT I check off the last box to use Reverse Chronological Order so that my first post will be first in the book
Once this is done I go back up on the page and click the box to create my blog book. Depending on how big your site is will depend on how long it takes to create your file. Mine took 56 seconds. Okay so on the next page the file is there to view and download. They ask for a donation and when I do my file for entry in the book I will donate something but while I am playing around, I choose not to. You choose when/if and how much to give.
Click Blog Book to open your file. Hopefully you have Adobe Reader already installed on your computer. If you do then it should open right away. BEFORE YOU READ THE FILE OR DO ANYTHING ….SAVE IT TO YOUR COMPUTER!!
As with all automated processes there are some things that might not be to your liking. I did not like the fact of the blank pages before the table of contents, I did not like the fact that at the end of each of my posts there was a listings of the photos (who cares where they are online once it’s printed?) and I checked the option for no numbering but it numbered everything anyway.There are ways to manipulate the file to your liking though.
I think it might be worth it to invest in a PDF editor. I used PDFill PDF Tools to take out the first 2 and last 2 pages
Let me know if you try this and share any tips you may have to give to others in the comments. I might do a follow-up article on this later…