Nice little tid-bit of interesting publishing-simplified news. This from Christopher Nulla technology writer for Yahoo! News:

Not everyone has it in them to write the
great American novel. Some of you may have more skimmable ambitions — to create your own magazine.

I love magazines, but I know firsthand how difficult they can be for amateurs to create. The printing and distribution process is the real killer: Commercial printers cost a small fortune to use, and getting magazines into the hands of subscribers and retailers is another nightmare. It’s no wonder that magazines, even big ones, are going out of business left and right; the economics stink worse than a baby skunk.

Despite all that, people keep trying to make magazines, and now there’s a service that can actually make that process easier and more affordable, particularly for small-run projects.

MagCloud is a new service from Hewlett-Packard that, put simply, lets you make your own magazine online. You actually design your magazine offline — PDF works — and then upload it to MagCloud. The company prints your magazine in full color on high-quality, 8.5 x 11” magazine paper, and trims and binds it. You can order all the copies you want for yourself, or sell it directly through the site. Issues cost 20 cents per page to print and mail — that’s cheaper by far than making color photocopies or printing in color at home.

If you want to print a magazine and sell it at cost for your school or social club, a 40-page publication will run them $8. If your aspirations are more commercial in nature, you just add a few bucks and pocket the difference. Best of all, as with on-demand book publishing, you don’t have to do anything. The magazine isn’t printed until someone orders it, and MagCloud takes care of the shipping (which is included in the cover price).

Publishers get royalties via PayPal once a month.

And MagCloud isn’t just being adopted by amateurs. Bigger publishers are taking advantage of the service, too. The defunct
Life magazine just began using MagCloud to resurrect its archives and publish special photo-heavy editions ranging from the important ("LIFE Covers World War II," "Nature’s Wrath," "Dr. Martin Luther King — Unseen Photos") to the frivolous ("Tennis Skirts," "Scary Motorcycle Crashes," "Cutest Doggie Costumes"). Issues cost $5 or $6 and run 16 to 24 pages, advertisement free.

You’ll find
all manner of available magazines by browsing MagCloud’s virtual rack.