You’ve done great! With the illustrations finished, revised, and locked, your book is almost ready to be published. All that is left now is to format it and get it ready for printing and publishing. It’s an interesting process and we’ll go through it for your benefit. Let’s start.
The formatting and print preparation is a process that is done by an artist who knows the software that gets the book ready for printing and/or publishing. Most often, the illustrators themselves do this. Formatting is filing the illustrations into specific software, getting the text onto the illustrations with different fonts, sizes, and colors. Print prep is exporting the complete work into a single document that is sent for printing and/or publishing as an ebook, per the guidelines of the printing company which you as an author chose before this process begins.
That being said, you should decide if you’d like your book to be printed or digital. There are benefits to both choices so let’s explain them.
A hard copy has more than a few benefits, especially since we’re talking about books for children. According to studies, children who read texts in print scored significantly higher on reading comprehension tests than those who read digitally. That’s something you should definitely consider when making a decision. The experience itself is different and a wondrous book with bright colors can leave a much better impression in a child’s mind filled with a vivid imagination. Another positive is that the paperback copies give you the opportunity of signing it which gives a personal touch. There are some downsides, though, the main being that the printing itself costs more and that it can’t be bought by as many people as the digital copy.
We’re living in a digital era where almost everything is accessible online. Books even more so. The main benefit of the digital copy is that you can get it in front of many more people than the paperback. People are usually impulsive and when they buy a book, they want to read it immediately, adding to the benefits of the ebook. Another massive benefit of a digital copy is that it’s environmentally friendly, or put in other words, you don’t participate in the horrible deforestation process inflicted upon our planet.
So, digital or paperback? We have the perfect solution - both!
If you opted for both or just hard copy, it’s time to find a printing service. Just to be prudent and avoid needless time-wasting, we recommend that you take this step along with the formatting and preparation step. That is choosing a printing house that will get your final product published, like IngramSpark, MCLR (there are many printing companies, so choose wisely) and such, or KDP (Amazon’s publishing and printing company) which aside from printing has a delivery system, so it will deliver your book to your readers. It’s completely up to you. While the artist is working on this process, you have yet another task to fulfill, and that is purchasing an ISBN code (the one long sequence with 13 numbers on it), a barcode that after you’ve purchased the ISBN, will be generated as a tiny rectangle and if you decide to have your book in the Local Library in your area, you will also need to get a LOC (Library-of-Congress) number.
Easy, right? We know, we know. There are many steps that you need to take and some of them sound really confusing, but there are a lot of resources and groups of people ready to help you and give you guidance whenever you need it, so believe in your book, and the rest will come naturally.
Next, and the last chapter of this blog post series will be dedicated to marketing. Namely, we’ll focus on promoting your book. So stick with us and feel free to let us know if there's a topic you'd like to know more about. We're more than happy to help! Till next Friday!