Custom Book Printing: Preparing for Your Publishing Debut

You’ve poured your heart ad soul into writing your manuscript. It’s been proofread, line edited, copy edited, and proofread again. The cover art is amazing, and you’re ready to get it printed.

Being a self-published author has its perks. One is the ability to create the book you want from idea to publishing. Gone is the stigma of being self-published but there is the added pressure of competing with a traditional publisher and their teams of skilled professionals.

Before sending your work off to a custom book printing service it will need to be formatted. Formatting is not a simple task and encompasses several important steps. It is important to get it right because you don’t want to ruin your book with a bad layout.

custom book printing

Are you ready to publish your book? Keep reading for tips on getting your book print-ready and off to the presses.

What is Custom Book Printing?

Custom book printing is a bookbinding service that places control of the project in the hands of the customer. Cost of the project is determined by several factors that we will discuss in this article. 

The service is perfect for individuals that what to create a book that is unique to their desired finished outcome. The printer takes the finished product and provides a proof copy for the customer to approve. Once that approval is received, an order is placed for the desired quantity.

In some instances, the customer can choose a quantity as low as one and as high as they can afford and have storage for.

Purchase Your Own ISBN?

Every book that is created with the intention of selling to the public needs an ISBN. The 13 digit  International Standard Book Number is assigned to each individual book. 

The ISBN is assigned to the publisher of the book. Authors need to be mindful that an ISBN issued by a vanity press or print-on-demand publisher is assigned to that company. The author still owns the copyright to their work but the company will be listed as the publisher.

An author can purchase an individual ISBN or receive significant savings by purchasing a block of 10. The bar code is placed on the back of the book in the lower right corner along with the price.

You can create your ISBN bar code by using an ISBN generator. 

Registering Your Book with the US Copyright Office

We’ve all heard that a writer can use several methods to copyright their book. The most common is to mail a copy of the manuscript to yourself and store it away unopened.

Authors should care enough about their work to register it with their companies copyright office. Formal copyright registration establishes ownership in the event someone steals your work. This means receiving the highest compensation if the theft results in a judgment.

In the pre-pages of your book, you will display the copyright verbiage acknowledging registration of the work.

What is the Trim Size?

Next up is determining the size of your book. This is referred to as the trim. The trim is the measurement of the length and width of the book. Common book sizes are in the range of 5.5 x 8.5″, 6 x 9″ and 8.5×11″.

A book can be smaller or larger. You may be charged extra from unique customized sizes. The standard size 5.5×8.5″ and 8.5×11″ is economical. 

How Many Pages is the Book?

The number of pages in your book will have a huge roll in the cost of custom book printing. The average fiction novel is 80,000 words, which is estimated to be around 300 pages depending on the trim size. If the book page count can be divided by 16, it is the most economical. 

Books also are best in 12pt type and 1.15 spacing. You will need to figure in your footer, header, left and right borders. A .5 inch inside gutter for the binding is needed, as well.

Will it Include Images?

With the cost-effectiveness of cheap book printing, you can now include black and white images in your book without increasing the cost. Images jazz-up a book and makes it uniquely your own.

Place large decorative letters at the beginning of a chapter or a small scroll to break-up text in a long chapter.

Hardcover vs. Trade Paperback

If cheap book printing is really what you are looking for, a trade paperback book is what you will need to order. The once-coveted hardcover book is usually not cost-effective for self-publishers on a budget.

Keep in mind that many aspects of the book will factor into the cost you will pay for printing. This, in turn, rolls over into the price you will need to charge customers in order to earn a profit.

Paperback books are easier to print and binding is easier. With hardcover books, additional steps are required.

Type of Paper

A typical book is printed on 50lb uncoated creme paper. You may also have the option of going with white paper, which is usually in 60 or 70 lb. For full color book printing and magazine printing, both the inside and cover will be printed on glossy art paper and matte art paper. 

The white paper is a good choice is your book will contain colored images.

Cover treatments

With trade paperback books you will want full color, full-bleed, glossy cardstock. This will produce a cover in vibrant colors. Meanwhile, the book cover surface also can be done with spot UV, emboss, gold foil stamping, silver foil stamping and more. 

If you go with a hardcover book you will have the option of a removable dust jacket. There are also hardcover books with the cover artwork embedded in the cover.

Setting Your Book Price

The last step tip for custom book printing is setting the price of the book. As mentioned above, the cost of the book is incorporated in the bar code for the ISBN. Calculate the cost of printing your books an add in your expected profit.

Ready, Set, Print!

Custom book printing is the way to go for self-published authors. Now that you have these tips to guide you through the process, you’re one step closer to becoming a bestseller.

Once your files are ready for print select the right printing service to provide the finished quality you deserve. Click here to get an instant quote for our product printing services.