Here’s a link to a German self-publishing house that now is available in the US. It is a company named tredition. It seems like an inexpensive German vanity press — or maybe not. As usual, the devil is in the details. I imagine that as you get into letting them help you, the costs will go up very fast. But $299 to publish a hard cover, paperback, and ebook is a very good price.
As a font designer, I enjoy the font they use for their logo, plus it’s a nice logo. [Well, to quibble, both notches are missing in the ti ligature. >grin<] It’s a very easy to use Website, and seems straight forward. From what I can tell, they are well established in Germany.
tredition: inexpensive German vanity press
I received this from them yesterday, after asking what they accepted in PDFs.
Our requirements for PDFs are listed in the help texts within our publication tool.
- The PDFs must be formatted according to the measurements of your book, taking into account the trimming edge, where necessary. Crop marks should not be set.
- The exact cover dimensions can be retrieved in our publication tool once the author has specified a page count.
- The PDF for the body of the book must have between 52 and 1048 pages. The page count must be divisible by 4.
- Fonts must be embedded
- Any images contained within should have a minimum resolution of 300dpi.
- Images should also be saved as CMYK. While our tool can convert RGB images, some shifts in color may occur.
- Our system is equipped to handle PDF 5.0
Once the upload is complete, our tool automatically checks whether the PDF complies with our requirements and notifies the author if anything is amiss.
This all looks fairly standard and straight forward. There was one troublesome statement, which I did not pursue.
If a book is uploaded in the form of a pre-existing ePUB, our system uses this data to generate a print-ready PDF which then in turn is converted into an ePUB file for distribution. While this may seem counterintuitive, this is part of our quality management process to e.g. ensure that our imprint is inserted correctly.
If you have been doing this for very long, you quickly find out that PDF to ePUB never goes well. In addition, a reflowable ePUB will be a difficult conversion to PDF—if you require layout control. Now I can accept the possibility that this inexpensive German vanity press has solved that problem, but it does worry me quite a bit.
They are yet another company which seems to be designed for a quick and easy conversion of a Word document. My guess is that this works quite well—for simple text-only books with few graphics, no tables, nor complex lists.
For book designers using InDesign
This does not look too good for us. The attraction for me was the distribution. For print books, this may well be a good solution. But if the ebook is going to be torn up by the conversion to PDF and then back again, I will hold off until I get better encouragement.
So, now you know what I know. Vanity presses are always iffy, but this looks like it might be good. I have not tried them. I may just do it, if I hear any better reports on sales.