A public domain library in Geminispace
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Welcome to the public repository of the booksin.space project, a free library in Geminispace.

BOOKSIN.SPACE is a collaborative effort by Gemini enthusiasts to contribute something interesting and meaningful to Geminispace, in the form of access to free literature. This is a not-for-profit community project---contributions are welcome!

If you'd like to get involved, visit the mailing list or ticket tracker to see what's happening with the project, or subscribe to receive updates about our progress.

#Contributing to the Library

The books in our library are all in text/gemini (gemtext) format. To contribute a book to our shelves, simply produce a gemtext version, complete and prepend the necessary YAML frontmatter (using this template), then submit the .gmi/.gemini file as a patch to the mailing list. If you are unfamiliar with git and sending patches but would still like to contribute a book, attaching a .gmi/.gemini file to your email works too :)

All texts contributed as patches should be deposited in the cataloging folder. The filename should contain no spaces, and be descriptive of the content (e.g., gibran_the-prophet.gmi). If submitting a gempub archive along with the gemtext version, please be sure that their filenames are uniform. The cataloging folder also contains a template to be completed and prepended to each individual text submitted. The only metadata required for submission are: author, title, language, and license. The optional data is used for building indexes to facilitate browsing the library by different categoires, such as by publication, publisher, etc., and it is also used to generate supplementary content, such as gempub archives or bibtex files for each individual item in the library.

# YAML frontmatter template for submissions to the
# booksin.space library. MIND THE WHITESPACE :)

# required fields
title: Prophet, The     # Split title if it begins with 
                        # an article ('the', 'an,' 'a,' etc.)
author:                 # use list syntax for multiple authors:
- Gibran, Khalil        # Surname, Given Name 
- Unknown               # unkown is OK
- Anonymous             # anonymous is OK
- 壯子                  # single name is OK
lang:                   # language code (e.g., 'en' for English, 
                        # 'ko' for Korean, etc.)
license:                # eg. public domain, CC-BY, etc.

# optional fields, feel free to delete what you don't need :)
attribution:    # additional information required by license
editor:         # same formatting as 'author' values above
translator:     # same formatting as 'author' values above
  title: # same formatting as 'title' values above
  volume: # arabic numerals
  issue: # arabic numerals

# if a field your submission needs is missing, go ahead and
# add it in! Just be sure to mention it when submitting
# your patch.

NOTE: The YAML frontmatter begins and ends with a triple dash ("---"). Copy and paste everything, including the triple dashes, into the beginning of your submission. Remove any optional fields you do not need, and add any that you do. The YAML frontmatter will be removed from the text and appended to a master metadata file for the item once cataloged.

#Submission Guidelines

#Tips for Gemtext-ifying Digital Texts

Converting a text to gemtext format is much easier to do if the source format is a markup/hypertext that common conversion tools like pandoc understand. That is, unless the text is very short, starting with plain text will require much more manual work to produce a nice gemtext book. The easiest method is to get either start with or convert the text into a format for which there exists a convenient gemtext converter, i.e. HTML or Markdown. Of course, the nature of the content may still require manual formatting, or may even escape the minimalism of gemtext altogether; such as math formulae, etc.

#Converting Books from Project Gutenberg

The books at Project Gutenberg are all in the public domain. When sourcing texts from PG, please remove ALL of the front and backmatter that PG includes in their books. Yes, this is legal, and what PG recommends. Our library is not affiliated with PG, it does not mirror its content nor serve as a proxy to their archives. In this case, it is unnecessary to include the PG license statements in book sourced from their repositories.


Our library will accept any texts with a free license, such as books in the public domain or creative commons. Copyrighted material can be included if the copyright holder gives explicit permission to booksin.space to distribute a manifestation of their work (or part of it). Academic pre-prints are wholly welcome (and encouraged)!

#Formatting and Style Guidelines

We are a library, but being that all (or most) of our books are new recreations of existing texts, we are also a kind of pseudo-publisher. There are no formal style rules to which submissions must adhere, however. If you want to make a sweet ASCII banner (cover) for the book you are submitting, that's awesome! If you want to use superscripts for footnotes or pandoc-style footnote syntax, it's all gravy. In general, the rule of thumb is consistency. It is unreasonable to expect all texts of all types in all languages from all time periods to adhere to the same style rules. Take whatever license you need to make your submission look good and make sense. Just be sure that whatever formatting and styling decisions you make are consistent throughout the text.

With that said, there are a couple guidelines for making things easier for everyone:

  1. Please submit texts as a single file. Do not separate a book into multiple chapters/files. It may be desirable for longer texts to be available in per-chapter formats, but dividing texts into chapters would be better handled by the shelver/symlinker utility itself. Gempub archives are an exception if submitted in addition to an ordinary gemtext version.

  2. Each gemtext book should be a standalone text; meaning, please include the title as a first-level heading and the author's name in a byline below it. People should know what they are looking at when they open the file (even the cataloguer script!) :b

#Acceptible Content

Our shelves welcome any genre or form of text-based media. That being said, there are some exceptions:

  • booksin.space does not tolerate misinformation, hate speech, homophobia, racism, etc. We will not be a soap box for your shitty "politics."
  • Do not send us classified materials. Do not send us illegal materials.