1. First, let's talk about it.
Feel free to pick my brain. I've produced many, many
books for self-published authors and I'm quite happy to pass on what
I've learned. Go to the contact
page and call or e-mail me.
I'd like to know what your publishing objectives
they will influence the design.
How do you imagine your book will look. As the
publisher, you are the boss. I will, however, offer suggestions if I
think they will help you achieve your publishing goals.
Do you also want to produce an ebook for Kindle and
other ebook readers?
Once we determine the scope of the project, I will
provide you with a quote. You can then pay your 30% deposit by Interac,
by credit card through Paypal, by cheque or
Detailed billing statements with a cost breakdown
will be sent to you regularly to keep you informed. Our billing rate is
2. Generally Speaking
more you know about self-publishing the more
comfortable you will feel about the whole process. It can, and should
be an enjoyable experience. Learn as much as you can. Search the
internet for self-publishing, how to publish & how to sell a book.
Don't let all the information overwhelm you. I'll help sort out what
you need to know and answer questions you may have.
If you are considering one of the many
"publish-on-demand" services found on the internet, be sure you
understand all their conditions. Many lead you to believe that they
will help make your book a financial success. Be cautious. Read what
other authors have said about them.
One of the best ways to learn about book design is
simply by examining books that look good to you. Spend some time in
bookstores and look at successful books.
You will retain all rights to the cover and inside
3. Preparing your manuscript
Most authors create their manuscript using word
processing software such as MSWord, but pretty well any format will be
Book designers use page layout software such as
InDesign, Quark and Ventura. Whatever layout work you do with your word
processor will most likely need to be undone before work begins with
the page layout software, so keep it simple.
Text, photos and illustrations should be supplied as
individual files. They will then be imported, combined and arranged
appropriately in InDesign.
Indexing can be dealt with in several ways. I can
help you determine the best way for your particular application. The
same applies to footnotes, endnotes, contents, lists, etc.
Text and image files, even very large ones, can
easily be sent on the internet. I can help you with that.
Editing changes can be made quite easily to a
formatted draft of the book, but it does take time. The manuscript
should be as close to perfect as you can make it before design and
Editing deals with content, punctuation, grammar,
etc.; not with fonts, spacing and other such layout functions.
Most authors hire an editor to edit their
I can help you find a suitable editor.
files are produced using page layout/desktop
publishing software. We use the latest versions of Adobe InDesign. The
individual book material files are gathered and placed into InDesign
where they are layed out on properly sized pages to look like the final
product. Two InDesign files are produced -- one for the cover, another
for the interior.
The material for your book can be supplied in
several different formats as individual files:
by the author usually in MS Word, or with some other word processing or
text editing applications.
supplied as high resolution files (300 dpi or higher) in tif or jpg
file format. The photo files may have been created directly by digital
cameras, or by scanning original photos. Digital photo files may be
further manipulated with Photoshop to produce the appropriate image
files. We can do the Photoshop work for you.
illustrations: scanned at 300 to 600 dpi and supplied as tif or
jpg files. They will be handled similarly to photos. We can do the
scanning for you.
illustrations: line art illustrations drawn electronically
using programs such as Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw. Line art
produced by these programs as vector images (including charts and
graphs) will maintain very high resolution. The illustrations can also
be supplied in jpg, tiff and png format.
in MS Word or spreadsheet programs such as Excel. Tables generally
require some re-working in order to properly fit the pages of your book.
A cover design can be developed based on the
conversations we have and a brief read through the manuscript, or
Your suggestions can be used to create the type of
cover you envision.
You may have images you would like to incorporate
into the cover design, or
I can provide images from a large stock of photos
graphic images, or
An illustrator or photographer can be commissioned,
You will also provide the back cover text material
(book description, testimonials, author bio, etc). I will create and
place the barcode.
Cover design drafts will be sent to you for viewing
as PDF files.
Your recommendations and changes will be
into the design and new drafts sent. This process will continue until
you are totally satisfied.
Final layout will be completed when the cover spine
thickness is determined (dependent on number of book pages and paper
When you approve the final draft, the completed
file will be sent to you or the printer as a high resolution
printer-ready PDF file.
When your manuscript is received, it will undergo a
general cleanup (removing double and redundant spacing, check quotation
marks and other punctuation formats, remove imbedded styles, etc).
If you have a book design that you particularly
I can duplicate it, or
A design suitable to your book will be created and a
few sample pages will be sent to you for viewing. This will be repeated
until you are completely satisfied with the design.
When you have approved the design, the whole book
will be formatted and sent to you as a PDF file.
You will proof read the book and list any changes
would like made, or
I can provide a proof reader. Proofreading can be a
time-consuming and expensive undertaking that many self-publishers
choose to either do themselves or get a reliable/experienced friend to
The proofing changes you request will be made and
another draft sent. This process will continue until you are completely
When you approve the final draft, the completed
inside book file will be sent to you or the printer as a high
resolution printer-ready PDF file.
Photos to be included in your book may be provided
you either as image files or photographs to be scanned.
If you choose to scan the photos yourself, talk to
about it before you start. Let's make sure they are scanned at the
proper resolution and in the appropriate format.
Photos and captions can be placed throughout the
wherever you want. The photo number and caption can be placed directly
into your manuscript at the location you would want it to appear (eg.
PIC027 George, looking up at the cherry tree.)
Photos can appear exactly as you provide them, or we
can adjust them as required (cropping, highlight/shadow adjustment,
contrast/lightness, saturation, spot removal, image repair, etc.).
9. Printing & Distribution
We can help you determine the printer/distributor
solution best suited to your needs. (Create Space, Lightning Source,
Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Ingrams, Baker & Taylor, or
whoever). We can assist with account setup.
After a printer is decided upon, I can
be in touch with them to make sure all files are prepared according to
their requirements. I can help locate the most suitable printer for
High resolution printer-ready PDF files will be sent
either to you or directly to your book printer.
How many books to print? This may be your biggest
publishing expense; let's talk before you place your print order.
Digital printing technology provides for an
low cost method of producing a small number of books. If you are not an
experienced publisher, I recommend a
small run initially before taking the plunge into large production
runs. Most printers will provide a bound proof copy for your review.
Final payment is made when all work has been
and printer files are ready to send.
Conversion of your print book to an e-book format
(mobi for Kindle, epub for other readers) usually is not a difficult
Some time-saving steps can be incorporated into the initial book
formatting if we know beforehand that you want e-books.
Draft copies of your e-book will be sent to you for
review on your e-reader (or e-book previewers on your computer
Epub files are tested and must pass epub validation,
mobi files are
tested on Kindle Previewer and Kindle on PC.
You can receive all the files associated with the
project either on a cd (or DVD) or they can be emailed to you, or
I will keep all the files in an archive so that you
may, at some future date, update or make modifications to the
And that's it! You're a