Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Sample/trial print of iami1 blogbook shows issues related to stapled book, page margins, cover pic and font size

Last updated on 21st April 2018

Here are some pics of the sample/trial print of iami1 blogbook (1 sample/trial copy of printed book) that I received today from the Puttaparthi printer that I had placed the order with, around 5 days ago.

[To open pic in higher resolution, right-click on pic followed by open in new tab/window. In new tab/window you may have to click on pic to zoom in.]

Above two pics are of the front cover page with some light reflection or flash appearing in the pics (in different places). [Due to a slip up, I missed including the NOT-FOR-PROFIT text at the bottom of the pic that I provided to the shop.]

Above pic is the Back cover page

Book Spine

Above two pics show how stapled book is less convenient to keep open as compared to Soft Cover binding/Perfect binding book. Left margins also need to be bigger for stapled book as otherwise the text at the edge of the left margin becomes difficult to read.

Solutions to above issues:

1) Reduce font size and/or gaps between lines of Front Page cover text (overlay) and Back page cover text (overlay) so as to leave an (additional) quarter inch margin on 4 sides. One approach is to have a margin as some colour filled border with the nature pic inside the borders.

2) Spine pic is not necessary as the book thickness is very less.

3) Book inner content page should have additional quarter (1/4) inch margin on Left and Right.

4) Book inner content font size 11 (Times New Roman font) is readable but a book shop owner view was that font size should be slightly bigger (say font size 12).

I was told that this copy is a trial copy and so the trimming and finish have some issues. The shop guy (operator/assistant who did all the work himself to print, cut, trim, staple and glue this sample/trial copy) told me that if I order for 20 copies minimum then the book copies will have better finish with cover page being thicker, cover colour print being from a 'digital' printer (as against inkjet printer for this sample/trial copy), and the paper cutting/trimming as well as book cover being glued to book's inner contents being better. He said that this sample/print copy was done with lesser/less capable facilities & tools whereas the 20 copies minimum order will be done at another location with more/better facilities & tools.

[Update: The sentences below reflect what seems to have been a miscommunication. The minimum order expected is 100 copies NOT 20 copies.]

This trial copy (91 pages of content + cover pages) cost me Rs. 95.

The quote for 100 pages of inner content + colour cover pages book with better finish, but still stapled book, is Rs. 100 per copy with minimum order of 20 copies.

It is clear that Soft Cover binding/Perfect binding is preferable to Stapled (binding). But the hassle is that from this Puttaparthi printer, I am not getting the option of Soft Cover binding/Perfect binding for low number of copies order like 20 copies.  I was told that offset printing order will have Soft Cover binding/Perfect binding. Initially I was told that minimum order for offset printing is 500 copies! That would be a waste of money and even waste of book copies. As of now, even if they offer 100 copy offset printing with Soft Cover binding/Perfect binding, I am not sure I will be interested unless it is a really sweet deal.

As it is my first printed copy of my first (blog)book, even if it is a trial/sample copy, I thanked the printer operator/assistant as well as an elder person who was there in the shop today, for helping me to produce my first regular printed book. They smilingly acknowledged my thanks. The elder person who seems to be a veteran in this business, told me that they had helped many such people (in Puttaparthi) to produce their first books (authored by them). The elder also provided valuable advice on how to fix some of the problems in the trial/sample print copy. I could see that he is quite knowledgeable about matters like font size, spacing between lines, cover page etc.

[Update: The paragraph below (this update) seems to be based on a miscommunication. I was later told that they cannot accept a 20 copies order (even though the 20 copies will be stapled and will not use Soft Copy/Perfect binding)! Minimum order is 100 copies! That was a surprise as I thought that they were willing to provide 20 copies of stapled book.]

Overall, I am very happy that in Puttapaarthi town itself, for slightly less than Rs. 100, I was able to produce my first (blog)book trial/sample copy having around 90 pages of content and glossy colour cover page (with some thickness). That gives me a good feeling about Puttaparthi small town capability to produce books which would be, I guess, typically on spirituality & religion, with a small budget of a few thousand Rupees for few copies (e.g. 20 copies of stapled book of 100 pages with colour cover page, costing Rs. 2000 + Rs. 100 for trial/sample copy). [Not valid anymore. See Update paragraph above this paragraph.

An Indian correspondent who has authored books, wrote over email (and was OK with sharing):

A very exciting occasion: to see the printed version of the book you have laboured over!

Ravi responded (slightly edited): :-). Thanks a ton, --Name-snipped--. You know how it feels :-).

A USA based correspondent wrote (I have presumed he would be OK with sharing based on previous such cases):

Dear Ravi - Hearty congratulations on your first published book! I am sure  readers would be benefited by reading it!

My best wishes!

Ravi responded (slightly edited): Thank you so much, --Name-snipped--. I really appreciate your kind and encouraging words.

Terry Reis Kennedy wrote (and was OK with sharing):
Looks terrific, Ravi!  Congratulations.

[Ravi: Terry is an author, an editor and a publisher of books. She has been providing and continues to provide professional services to others to publish books in India and USA. The logos she used for her clients is Tiger Moon Productions. Presently her Logo is Red Clover Productions. Red Clover also produces videos.]

Ravi responded (slightly edited): Thanks Terry for your encouragement for this newbie at printing books :-). I am learning about cover design and other issues associated with printing books. So even for this first printed book of mine, there is some more work to be done, and I am focusing almost all my attention on that task. But I can now see light at the end of the tunnel!

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