The result? Well, currently approval, and an estimated 6 week wait whilst they scurry through the text checking I'm not saying anything nasty about deitys, prophets, boobs or Steve Jobs.
The release of the iPad has seen a serious attempt to get iBookstore up and running with a wider set of content, and its a privilege to be part of that. Lulu makes the process relatively painless, once you've got a compliant ePub file for submission.
What the world doesn't tell you is that getting a 'compliant' ePub is a bit of a rollercoaster, and the guidance isn't really mature enough to get you through using anything other than trial and error.
For those looking to follow suit, here's the broad process I followed:
- Find your market (in my case, someone with an iPad who wanted a copy and was prepared to help me make it.)
- Lift all the text out of your original files, and put them into individual HTML files, validated as XHTML1.1.
- Import them all into your (nascent) editor of choice. (I used eCub on the PC).
- Battle with what passes for Unicode on the PC until everything is in UTF-8.
- Run a validator against the source, and remove all the 'bold' and 'strong' tags.
- Double check every opening p tag ends with a corresponding slash p tag.
- Move all the formatting into CSS.
- Add alt-tags for every image.
- Build, and mail a copy across for approval.
- Learn about ePubCheck and the command line.
- Learn about validation, link checking, case sensitivity, character sets.
- Resample all the images so that they're max 760px on a side.
- Lose a few days to arrive at a ePubCheck 1.0.5 compliant file, that passes all checks with no warnings, no flags, no errors.
- Publish the file to Lulu, build new cover art, buy the 'iBookstore' distribution package.
- Submit it to Apple and wait.
- start over with all new files.
Hopefully it'll be worth it though. Then we have to DRM or not to DRM...