Enter Vellum… The Closest EPub’s Got To WYSIWYG

Enter Vellum… the closest ePub’s got to WYSIWYG

I put up a new short story earlier today, formatted more professionally than anything I’ve ever self-pubbed before. I don’t pretend to be a self-pub expert. If something suits that medium I’m happy to do it. But conventional publishing — sorry I won’t call it ‘legacy’ because that’s plain daft — remains my bread and butter and I’m happy for it to stay so.

Technology primarily interests me through what it makes possible that couldn’t be done before. I love short stories but the conventional publishing market for them isn’t great. Delivering some now and again direct makes a lot of sense.

What held me back before? The hassle. I like my work to look good, and that’s not easy with ePub and Kindle. Yes you can go through the format routine with Word. Scrivener, Pages and Ulysses will alll publish direct to ePub too, and do competent jobs. But the finer points of publishing — custom design, drop caps, handsome styling — are hard to get unless you dirty your hands with code. That’s beyond me and it will stay that way.

And then along came a remarkable OS X app called Vellum.

Read More