During 2018 the Benefitz team developed an innovative online system aimed at making it easy for older folk to publish their life stories. This new system is called 'My Life Story Book’ – www.mylifestorybook.co.nz
The system essentially provides an online platform to build the book, and then provides the option of producing printed copies, while also publishing the book online.
Benefitz Managing Director Aidan Bennett conceived the system and then worked with the Benefitz in-house web development team to build the platform. He then helped his own mother Lillian to write her life story – as the pilot book – and built and published that book on the system.
The system was launched in mid-2018 and people are now in the process of building their own books.
“I am passionate about providing an easy method for people to tell their life stories,” says Aidan. "Everyone has a story, and many of our older folk have experienced very interesting lives with the changes that have happened in their lifetimes. Documenting their lives is great for them, for their families and for generations to come. A key aspect of the system we have developed is the story remains online forever."
One person who is thrilled with the new system is David Greenwood, who worked with Aidan to use the system to publish his life story late in 2018. David had taken a year or more to write his life story – 126,000 words – and was looking for a solution to get it printed and published.
“My daughter saw the article in Channel Magazine about Aidan’s new system and I made contact with him via email in early November,” says David. “Aidan replied very quickly and visited me at home within a few days to explain the process. He took away my draft word file and very quickly provided an affordable price for the book to be built on the system.”
Aidan worked with David to estimate the approximate paging of the book and how it should be structured with the chapters and photos etc. The estimate was that the book would be around 450-470 pages.
“I was thrilled that Aidan not only offered the efficient system to get my book published, but clearly also had very good knowledge of book publishing to provide me with guidance on aspects such as cover photos, chapter titles, proof reading and overall book structure.”
Production of the book started on the Benefitz system in early December and David had printed copies of his book – 470 pages – ready for Christmas. The whole process took around three weeks.
David was thrilled. “When we started Aidan said it would be around one to two months but it was completed much sooner. I guess I was lucky that Aidan worked very closely with me as I know he used the opportunity to review and refine the system he has pioneered. I was delighted to have finished books, with some going under the tree for family members at Christmas.”
In total, 20 books were produced for David, 15 soft cover and five hard cover. David made the decision that he didn’t want his book to be live online immediately, but it will be able to be turned on and made live at any time in the future.
For more information visit: www.mylifestorybook.co.nz or contact Aidan, firstname.lastname@example.org