Printed Books 101: how to prepare graphic files for book printing, Pt. 2

How to prepare graphic files for book printingIn order for you printed book to look as beautiful as you imagine it, you need to send your printer pristine files. If you have a lot of graphic elements (photos, graphs, etc.) in your book, check out Part 1 of this series, and then hop back here for step #2 below.

Preparing graphic files for book printing — Step #2:

Prepare your interior text PDF file

When you’re getting your interior text PDF file ready for printing:

• Interior text PDF files must be in a single page format and not in printer or reader spreads.

• The number of pages in the book should end on an even number.

• Left side pages should be even numbered and right side pages should be odd numbered.

— Saddle Stitched books need a page count divisible by four.

• Blank pages (i.e. end sheets) should be included in the number of pages on your quote.

• A “page” equals each side of the paper. Each page of your PDF file counts as 1 page of your book. If your book has 200 pages it will have 100 leafs of paper but you will still enter “200” as the number of pages in the quoter.

• Text files require a minimum 7/8′′ left and right margin and 1/8′′ top and bottom margin. You can have larger margins but not smaller margins.

— Page margins are the blank space around the edges of the page. In general, you insert text and graphics into printable area between the margins.

— To set your page size and margins properly in Microsoft Word click the Page Layout tab, then the Margins drop down. Choose the Custom Margins option. This will bring up the Page Setup box. Set your top and bottom margins to a minimum of 0.31” and your left and right for 0.88”. You may choose larger margins depending on the desired look of your book, but these are the lowest recommended margins.

— From there you can click the Paper tab to adjust your page size to the trim size you’ve selected in the book quote configurator.

• All color must be converted to CMYK.

• All fonts must be embedded.

• Images must be 300 DPI.

• Save black & white images in grayscale mode.

Your BookBaby ISBN inside your book (optional):

• If you want us to include the ISBN number on the title page of your book please indicate the location on the title page by including “ISBN: 978-X-XX-XXXXXX-X.” Our pre-press operators will update the title page with your unique ISBN #.

Preparing graphic files for book printing — Step 3:

When your cover and text PDF files are complete please login to your BookBaby Print account and select “complete my order” on the quotation you would like to use. Clicking the “complete my order” button will take you back to the project center where you will upload your files, review digital proofs and checkout.

Our team will review your files and send you an email letting you know that your files are in production.

Most orders ship within 5 business days. Hard case orders of 500 or more books ship within 10 business days.

Peace of mind

Good News: BookBaby Print has a team of prepress operators on staff who review every file before printing. We won’t let poorly set-up files go to press. We understand how hard you’ve worked to develop your manuscript and even though you’re submitting your own “print ready” PDF files one of our file preparation experts will review them just in case you missed something.

Once you’ve uploaded your files and completed your order you can relax knowing that the experts at BookBaby will make sure you’re thrilled with your finished, printed books. Additionally, for those requiring a smaller scale option, our single book printing service is ideal. It offers a press proof to show you exactly how your finished book will look and feel before you commit to a full bulk order.

To get started, visit BookBaby today.

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  1. […] For more information on preparing your graphic files for book printing, click HERE, or check out PART 2 of this series HERE. […]


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