Re: OT? Printing a Book

Subject: Re: OT? Printing a Book
From: Jeff Hanvey <jewahe -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: Carol Anne Wall <mmpc0014 -at- pclink -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 25 Jul 2000 08:23:53 -0700 (PDT)

--- Carol Anne Wall <mmpc0014 -at- pclink -dot- com> wrote:
> Any tips, tricks, pitfalls to avoid? Will I most
>likely need to write or transfer the project into
>Frame or Pagemaker (the agency has a copy of
>Pagemaker)? Or will Word alone work?

I've managed publication of several newsletters, so my
experience is limited, but here's what I suggest:

1. Gather the the specs for the job, including:

-How many inks will be used (2, 3, 4 or full). Also
mention if any special inks will be needed (sometimes
the printer has to mix the right colors or order them
(adding to the cost).
-How many pages the final book should be (including
front matter and back matter).
-How the book will be bound (glue, stitch, binder)
-How large the pages will be.

2. Determine ahead of time how much work you're going
to put into the book. Are you going to do ALL of the
work: writing, designing, and layout? Or will you just
write the text and leave the design up to the
printer's art department. The reason I mention this

-The amount of work you do will determine your tool.
If you're going to do it all, then you'll probably
need a specialized tool such as PageMaker. If you plan
just to write the text, then Word will be fine.
-The amount of work the printer has to do will add to
the cost of the book and push back the completion
date, not to mention require more consultations and
proofs until you and your organization are happy with
the design.

3. Talk to several printers and get an estimated price
so that you can compare the costs. Be sure to ask:

-What graphics format should the pictures be in (some
printers can only accept tif or eps).
-What software they use (most use Quark Xpress or
-What hardware they use (Mac or PC). Most printers use
Mac's: if you use a PC, there may be some conversion
-What proofs/dummies are included in the price. Some
printers charge for EVERY proof, including
black-and-white lasers.
-What their preference is for delivering the book
(electronic, PDF, paper).

-Printers are in the business to make money, so
they're going to try to convince you to let them do
almost everything. That's fine if you don't have a
budget. If you do - well, you'll have to decide.
-Carefully read the proofs. Printers make mistakes.
-Carefully outline what you want. Printers can be
somewhat dense, and often do what they are told. And
sometimes, they interpret what you say. Be especially
careful to give clear directions when you're returning
a proof.

One of the things I would do when I got a proof was to
make edits (in red) right on the proof. Then, I'd go
back and type up a list of the corrections, together
with clear instructions about what I wanted changed,
such as:

The colors look a bit off...Is this the correct ink

Page 1, 4th line, change "form" to "from." (don't use
quotation marks). The line should read, "they worked
from 8am to 1pm to raise money" (don't use quotation
Page 3, top of page. The line is in the incorrect
position. It needs moved up .0012" so that it is .75"
from the top edge of the page.
Page 6, left column, 3rd paragraph, 2nd line, change
"it" to "is" (don't use quotation marks). The line
should read: "The way to a man's heart is through his
stomach." (don't use quotation marks).


Jeff Hanvey

"There is fiction in the space between / The lines on your page of memories
Write it down but it doesn't mean / You're not just telling stories"
-Tracy Chapman, Telling Stories

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