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A LuLu of an Idea: Putting Your NOKIA Phone to 'Novel' Use

abstract:TORONTO (Reuters) - An Italian writer decided to put his mobile phone to good use during his daily commute to and from work -- by writing a book. Robert Bernocco, an IT professional, took advantage of his travel time by writing a 384-page science fiction novel, Compagni di Viaggio (Fellow Travelers), on his Nokia using the phone's T9 typing system.


July 29, 2007
— "It really was a time management issue. He had a book in him and really wanted to write it but found he just didn't have the time to sit and do it on a computer," said Gail Jordan, PR director at the book's publishers,

Writing in standard Italian rather than text-message shorthand, Bernocco divided his manuscript into short paragraphs, saved them on his phone and then downloaded them onto his home computer for proofreading and editing.

"Only a few years ago I would have struggled to find both the time and the publisher to enable me to create this book," Bernocco said in a statement. "Thanks to my Nokia and Lulu, I am now proud to be a published author." has more than a million registered members and was developed by Canadian businessman Bob Young to publish books, videos, and multimedia on the Internet.

"The fact that this gentleman had this -- no pun intended -- novel idea to do it off his phone and found it so simple to then upload it on our site and create a book speaks exactly to what we do; we are time saving for people," Jordan told Reuters.

There are about 323,000 items published on Bernocco's book is currently ranked at 19,720 by sales and can be purchased for $17.38.

About LuLu And Print On Demand Publishing claims to be the fastest growing POD (Print on Demand) publishing business. It boasts one million registered memebers and 98,000 printed books in 2006 alone. The website won the W2 web consortium's top rating in the book category for its contributions to online self-publishing from start to finish.

Everything is done online, submission, design, publishing and sales. They even make it easy for you to add artwork to your book (whether it is on the cover or inside to complement the text), via the biggest image data bank, Getty Images, a picture-perfect union that makes image selection, negotiating digital rights management issues and payment easy. We wrote about's computer generated title-rating program, a program that claims to be able to predict popular titles based on the past sales generated for previously published novels.

This time we draw your attention to the growing popularity (and indeed environmental feasibilities) of POD technology. Perhaps it is a place to publish your manuscript?

In a play on words, the site also inaugurated its own writing prize called The Blooker, a take-off from the Mann-Booker prize. The judges for the prize include Arianna Huffington (who briefly ran against Arnold Schwarzenegger for the California Governorship), Rohit Gupta, et al. The winning book for 2006 was Julie & Julia by Julie Powell.



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