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March 5th, 2015

Printing a Children’s Book – A Guide

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Children’s books are one of the most common types of self-published books. Authors vary from parents that want to print a personalized book for their children to those looking to become the next Doctor Seuss without going the traditional publishing route.

We’ve printed a large number of children’s books here at Colorwise, and printing a children’s book is pretty simple as long as you go in knowing a few basics. We put together this guide for printing books for kids that will have you on your way to printing your own children’s books in no time.

Knowing Your Options for Printing a Children’s Book

Though many children’s books share a few similar specifications, there are a few choices you’ll want to make depending on your particular project. You can select these different options on our book printing quote page to get a quote on your children’s book.

Choice 1: Case Wrapped or Perfect Bound

The first choice you’ll want to make is whether you want a hardcover children’s book (case wrapped) or a softcover (perfect bound). Case wrapped books have a printed cover adhered to the hardcover of the book. If you choose a softcover book, you will likely also want to choose a gloss laminate, which provides a more durable cover that will have less chance of ripping even when opened over and over again by little hands.

Choice 2: Size

In general, the children’s books we print tend to be larger than other types of books like novels, so 8.5 x 11 and 9 x 12 are common sizes. Many children’s books are in printed in landscape format so they are wider than they are tall, changing the measurements to 11 x 8.5 and 12 x 9, respectively.

With that said, don’t let these guidelines be limitations; we can print nearly any size. Just let us know what you need.

Choice 3: Paper Type

Since most children’s books contain colorful photos, we generally recommend using a coated 100# Gloss text paper for the inside of your book. Coated paper allows color images to print with more contrast, and gloss text is the most common paper we use for printing children’s books. However, some authors prefer the look of a 100# Satin text paper. This is also a coated paper, but with less shine than gloss paper.

Though there are a few other choices, these are the primary categories that children’s books authors we work with need to make decisions. For any other issues, you can work directly with our prepress department to make sure you get the exact book you need.

What Kind of Files You Need to Give Us

After you’ve got your files exactly the way you want them, we’ll need one of two formats to get them ready to print.

PDF

The most common files authors send to us are PDFs. These are typically the easiest to work with, as we can see exactly how you want your files to look. Additionally, it’s easy to convert your files into a PDF.

InDesign Files

If you designed your book in InDesign, you can send us those files and we’ll work directly with them to produce a final PDF proof. Everyone that prints with us gets this digital proof so you will see exactly how your files will look when they are printed.

Find out more in our article on file preparation.

Let Us Know What You Need

While the above information is helpful for most children’s book printing, we know that questions specific for your project always arrive. Our customer service and prepress department is always ready to help you out with any questions you have – before, during and after your project.

For any questions, give us a call at 888-664-8166.