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The Self Publishing Process

Self Publishing
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What is Self-Publishing?


A traditional publishing company will effectively handle all aspects of your book, from editing to distribution. The publisher will also take ownership of your printed books But all of these services come at a price. Typically, the author will give up a lot of rights in the process. Another problem can be getting a publisher to take on your work at all. Whilst established authors may have little problem establishing a contract for their latest book things are rarely that easy for the new author. Getting a 'foot in the door' can be hard work. With self-publishing, the author undertakes the publishing function. will get your book into print and you will own these books. You are then responsible for promoting and distributing your book. But you also keep all of your rights and the profits you make from your sales. ~ Self-Publishing is a full-service self-publishing company specializing in short run to medium runs, usually up to about 1000 books.

We make it easy to get your book into print. We're not just a printing company. Our experience in the graphic design and publishing world knowledge–combined with our high-resolution Digital workflow and understanding of production and bookmaking set us apart.

High-quality short-run self-publishing is our specialty. We print runs from 10 books to more than 1000 copies, it's no problem.

Your book will be of the same high quality found in the high-street book stores. We can supply both paperback and hardback books or a mixture of both.

From start to finish, can handle the entire self-publishing process for you if required.


  1. Layout and design advice

  2. Scanning and digital photo editing

  3. Copyright registration

  4. ISBN

  5. Bar Code Generation

  6. Cover design

  7. Custom paperback, hard back , wire bound or saddle stitch binding options.

We are your complete self publishing solution


Self-Publishing can be easy to do and will be there every step of the way.

Our experience reduces the amount of time and money you spend getting your book into print. Contact us today and learn how you can get your ideas published.

Getting started


It's as easy as 1-2-3 to get us started with your book:


Before You Start


Choosing the finished size you would like for your book should be one of the first tasks before you begin to compose the text. Setting the correct page size in your computer software to match the size of your book is essential if technical problems such as text reflowing are to avoided further down the track. If you are in any doubt please feel free to contact us we are only too pleased to advise you.



Prepare your manuscript


Ideally, no matter what software program you use to prepare your book, an Adobe PDF file is the preferred format to supply to us for printing. Using PDF ensures that your finished book will look and have the same format as your original typed manuscript. Adobe InDesign is a popular software program used by professionals and amateurs alike and will help you create a superb book which can easily be submitted for print. InDesign format also allows us to perform any last minute alterations you may require.

Paperback books and books with dust jackets need cover art, including a short summary and author's biography and photograph. This is best supplied as a separate file to the main body of the book.


If you are including photographs in your book


If you make a PDF file at high resolution then all your photographs should be included exactly as your original document was put together. If supplying an InDesign file the file "package" menu will automatically copy all your photograph files into a folder called "links". This folder should then be part of the "package" which you submit to us for printing.


Submit your files for printing.


Submitting files by email is very convenient and usually not a problem. However, some books, especially those containing photographs, can balloon into huge files which are best supplied on memory stick, otherwise, files can be uploaded to "Dropbox" or one of the file sharing sites such as which work very well these days and it is only necessary to email us the link to the file and we can then download it at our end.



Book Sizes


Most commercially produced books conform to certain basic sizes. In New Zealand the most popular is A4 (210 x 297mm) and A5 (148.5 x 210mm). Many other sizes are available such as B4 or B5. The basic reasoning behind these sizes is that the paper manufacturers also use this sizing system and therefore , for example, a press sheet of A1 size can be cut into 9 A4 sheets with no wastage. Therefore, to minimise waste, an ultimately the cost of the book, if is important to adhere to this sizing standard unless your book needs to be an oddball size for a specific reason. It goes without saying that the more wastage per sheet the more the paper cost for the book will be.


Paper Types has access to all New Zealands major paper merchants and a wide range of paper choices is available for the printing of your book. In practice most books tend to be printed on Offset/laser paper, Matt or Gloss art paper or recycled paper .

Offset/laser is the standard paper that such items as letterhead are normally printed on. It is an economical paper which is highly suited to paperback books, manuals, price books and the like. Coated papers such as Matt or Gloss art papers come in a variety of weights and are more suited to higher quality books containing photographs for example. Different types of paper can be combined, for example, you may wish to have text on offset paper but with a centre section of photos printed on art paper. Recycled paper is another option for those wanting a more off white finish or for those who are environmentally sensitive.


Paper Weights


Consideration should be given to the paper weight used in your book. If you are writing a novel for example, with several hundred pages then a heavy weight paper is not practical as it would make the book very thick and heavy for the user. As a general rule of thumb 90/100gsm would be the heaviest weight for a paperback book or 130gsm for a book printed on art paper.


Covers & Dust Jackets


With paperback books where the cover is affixed directly to the spine of the book then normally a 300gsm paper would be suitable, also 250gsm is popular for books where the lifespan may be shorter, conference handbooks for example, which may only need to last a week or so. Wrap around dust jackets are normally printed on 150gsm paper. Consideration should be given as to whether a dust jacket is essential if price is a consideration as some sizes need to be printed on special printing machines which can substantially add to the cost of the book especially on short runs.


Cover Design


We can design basic cover layouts including title, spine, ISBN numbers & barcodes and any blurb required about the book or its author. Any photo or graphic you supply can be used on the cover. The basic cover design is put together using material which you supply and the fixed price for this service is $120+gst. For clients requiring more sophisticated designs we suggest employing the services of a graphic design company. As our business is predominantly the printing of books there is a limit to the amount of time we can devote to design work. We will always work with you to try and accommodate any material you may wish to use.


Laminated Covers


If you wish to have laminated covers this can be done in either gloss or matt finish laminate. With hardback bound books it is standard practice to laminate the outer case of the book to give it extra durability.



Binding methods


Are you ready to be published? Whether it's a first novel, a family history, a children's book or a photography collection, has the experience and the passion to make it happen! Need full book printing services?. At, we view book binding as a meeting of art and science. The latest technology brings us new book binding materials and equipment that goes hand in hand with our careful crafting and experience. At, we see your book binding project as an opportunity to do justice to the work and vision you put into it.

As a digital printing and publishing specialist, has the versatility and expertise to create your dreambook - even if you only need a few. No book binding job is too big or too small at, and we specialize in small runs and first editions. Wondering about the best method for your book binding? We can help! Some of our options include:


Perfect (Soft Cover) Book Binding


Great for training manuals, product catalogues, novels and any thick paperback or hardback. Perfect book binding is accomplished with digitally printed pages clamped in a vise-like structure. These pages are drawn across a blade that carves notches in the bound edge. This “roughed up" spine is passed over a hot melt glue dispenser. Glue adheres to the edges and works its way into the notches. After the glue is applied to the spine, the whole assembly is forced into what will become the wrap around cover. Completing the book binding, the cover is folded around the “book block”, glued and folded up the front and back of the book. This form of book binding is preferred as the standard for paperbacks as well as the beginning of a cloth covered high-end hard bound book.


Hardcover (Case) Binding


A hardcover aka hardback is a book bound with thick protective cover, with usually a paper or leather dust jacket over the main cover. The aim of hardcover is protection and durability. These books are mainly for long-term use and collectors’ editions. Hardcover books last far longer than the corresponding paperbacks. They do not get damaged easily thus making them perfect for reference guides, great literary works, etc.

In addition, there is a difference in the type of paper used to print hardcover books. The paper used is long-lasting acid-free type. Acid-free paper has a pH value of 7 (neutral) which makes it highly durable. The papers are stitched or glued to the spine.

Hardbacks are prepared for commercial works, best sellers, reference books, etc., which should be long lasting. produce many hardcover books and they are very popular amongst client wishing to produce family history books or reference books where longevity is essential.



Coil Book Binding


Coil binding is a colorful and versatile type of book binding chosen for its ability to fold completely over on itself or lay flat for easy working. The new materials today are plastic and metal and vary in size from ¼ inch to several inches. and can be made to have a very stiff cover and back with a glossy UV cured plastic coating or a traditional Acetate clear front cover and blue or black vinyl back that has been in use for decades. has automated equipment for the punching of paper and the insertion of the coils to make your book binding experience quick and trouble free. Order your book binding project online or have us do the book printing and binding as a turnkey project.


Saddle Stitched Book Binding


Saddle stitching is a great book binding option for menus, pamphlets, or short books and magazines. Quick and inexpensive,  it is as simple as 2 staples, a fold and a trim. However, it takes an experienced book binding company like to pay attention to details in your digital printing file... like “creep”. “Creep” is the tendency of the middle pages in a saddle stitched book to have their edges protrude from the folded book more and more and more as they approach the center of the bound book. When these pages are trimmed to have a uniform edge, sometimes the middle pages have information trimmed off. manages this with special book binding anti-creep software that gently nudges the print away from the cutting edge as it approaches the middle of the book.



ISBN (International Standard Book Number)


International Standard Book Numbers (ISBN) are available free to New Zealand publishers of books and other print, electronic or multimedia publications. They are provided by the New Zealand Standard Book Numbering Agency, which operates within the National Library.

An ISBN is a unique 13-digit figure divided into four parts. It should always be printed exactly as given, for example: ISBN 978-0-9582813-0-0 or ISBN 978-1-877257-08-7.

You can request an ISBN online at this link


Benefits of having an ISBN


An ISBN provides a book with a 'fingerprint' that allows publishers, book suppliers and libraries to easily locate and order it.


Legal Deposit


You are required to supply copies of your publication to the National Library, as specified in the National Library of New Zealand (Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa) Act 2003.



Bar Codes


Retail stores require bar codes. Most retail stores will not stock products without bar codes as the checkout system relies on the bar code system to operate.

If you are considering selling your book through a retail store we strongly urge you to have the barcode which corresponds to your ISBN number printed on the book. can generate and print a barcode on the back cover of your book.


If you need a barcode for your book or magazine, the best way is to get an ISBN number (for books) or ISSN number (for magazines). This number can then be easily transformed into a barcode number for your book / magazine, without the need to purchase a separate barcode number.

ISBN (International Standard Book Numbers) and ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) are a unique identifier assigned to each edition of every published book, book-like product, magazine and serial.

You can request an ISBN online at this link


Copyright Registration


There is no system for copyright registration in New Zealand. You don’t need to submit your work to any organisation, publish your work, pay a registration fee, put a copyright notice on it, or do anything else to get copyright protection − it is automatic and free.

An original work is protected from the moment is put into “material form” such as in writing or recorded in some other way.

You may be able to register your work with an independent party (such as the New Zealand Writers Guild) to obtain independent proof of your claim to authorship. However, this registration does not establish copyright ownership and is not necessary to secure copyright protection.




Guidelines for Submitting Manuscripts which have been Typed using Microsoft Word or Microsoft Publisher


Microsoft Word documents do not transport well from one computer to another, problems such as formatting changes occur and we cannot reliably print your book directly from a Word file.

This document gives you the steps necessary to prepare your Word file correctly and then to make a PDF file from it which we can use to print you book. Most of the guidelines below are also applicable to the Microsoft Publisher software also.


Preparing your book using Microsoft Word


The page size of your document must match the page size you would like in your book.

E.g. If your book will be an A5 sized novel then your Word page size must be set to A5 size also. We mention this because, as Word is an American software program, if automatically defaults to the standard American letter page size which does not match any of the New Zealand page and paper sizes. If you type your novel at American Letter size, which is close to A4 size, when we reduce it down to fit A5 the font size will also reduce and may become too small to read.


Set up your pages as left and right hand pages, this is called “Mirrored” in Word. Setting all the pages as left hand, which is the default setting, will result in your margins being wrong on alternate pages and also your pages numbers being in the wrong place (unless they are centred)


Set up your margins, with the pages set to “mirrored” the inside margins, which will be the ones nearest the spine of your book should be set to a larger size than the outside margins in order to allow for the binding of the book. Not doing this will result in your pages looking slightly off centre to your reader due to part of the margin being taken up by the binding at the spine.


Type your text, add your photos etc and format your fonts, headings, Chapter titles etc. If you want each chapter to start on a right hand page then it may be necessary to insert a blank pages at the end of some chapters to ensure this happens.


 When your book is completed and you are happy with all your formatting, layout etc PLEASE PLEASE proof read your book at least twice. Also, if possible, get a friend to proof read it to, you will be amazed how many typos get overlooked time and again when an author reads their own work. We can’t emphasize how important this is as it can cause us several hours extra work having to re-lay up all your files for printing if you submit a new file once you receive the proof copy of your book which we supply so you can conduct final checks on the print quality and binding etc.


Making a PDF File


Nearly all application allow you to save the file as a PDF file these days. Usually this is as simple as selecting "Save As" and then choosing PDF as the file format. Wherever possible PDF's should be made at "Print" resolution. Screen resolution is too low a quality for print and Press resolution is too high for digital print.

Why a PDF ?


PDF stands for Portable Document Format. This format was designed by Adobe specifically to enable a file to be moved from one computer to another and for the document to be able to be opened on the receiving computer and be exactly the same as it was on the computer it was generated on. If you make a PDF file it will retain all the formatting. spacing , fonts, page sizing etc on our system as it had on yours. This enables us to reliably print your file without fear of things changing as would invariably happen if you sent us your native Word file.


If you are unsure about and of the points raised in these guidelines then please feel free to call or email us. We are more than happy to help our clients to achieve the outcomes they want for there work whether it be a novel or non fiction book, Attention to details such as those mentioned in the text above help to achieve a professional looking end result, which is good for your readers and good for us at


A4 wide books (297mm wide x 210mm tall)


The latest machinery employed by allows us to print A4 Wide/Landscape books without any issues.

American Size Books

Our machines can handle the larger sheet size required to print

6 x 9 inch books and also 5 x 8 size


Odd sized books


Some sizes of books make it difficult to fit so many pages on a sheet without a lot of wastage, this is worth bearing in mind if price is a consideration.


Proof Copies


Primarily the proof copy of your book is supplied so you can check that you are happy with the quality of the printing, binding, paper stock and colours. Its is also really the last chance to proof read the book before it goes to print. It's not too late to make minor adjustments at this stage but we do encourage clients to proof read the book at least twice before submitting the files to us as major changes once the proof copy has been produced entail the whole set up procedure being repeated, however, this is better than the books containing major errors. You will have received an email with a link to our "Proof copy sign-off sheet" prior to your proof copy arriving on the courier. Once you are happy to proceed then the form can be submitted online and the production process will start. For book order less than 100 copies we normally supply an online proof copy but a printed proof can also be requested.



Turnaround Times


Once you returned the online proof copy acceptance form we can order in any special papers or materials we may need if they are not already in stock. The files are then set up for final printing. The final books normally take 7-10 working days from when we receive the acceptance form, obviously this can vary slightly depending on workload or if it is a particularly big print run or, if the books are hard cover, it can take longer to produce these. We would normally give you a pretty accurate indication of how long you books will take.



Payment terms


Payment can be made by several methods. Online internet banking is popular and our account number is listed on the invoice we will email to you. We also accept cash or eftpos at the retail  showroom.. Unfortunately our bank no longer accepts cheques.  As most books are 'one offs' we usually ask for a 50% deposit once the proof copy is accepted and the balance is payable once we inform you that books are ready for dispatch. 

Book Sizes
Hard cover
Soft Cover
Saddle Stitched
Coil Bind
Bar Code
Legal Deposit
Laminated Covers
Cover Design
Paper Types
Paper Weights
Word files
Make PDF
Binding Methods
PDF Maker
Odd Size books
Proof Copies
Turnaround Times
Payment Terms
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