Submission Guidelines

The following guidelines are intended for paperback books with black and white or color interiors, with full-color covers. For details on how to have your book scanned, please contact your account manager.

 

General Guidelines

PDF Specifications

  • We support PDF v1.4 and lower.
  • Embed all fonts and images in your PDF file prior to submission.
  • Submitted PDF files should not contain bookmarks, comments, invisible objects, or metadata.
  • PDFs should be optimized. Optimization is useful to reduce your files size, allowing for higher performance when transferring, uploading, viewing and printing the files.
  • Download the CreateSpace PDF Submission Specification.

Common Points of Failure

  • Layers and transparencies should be flattened in the PDF file.
  • We do not accept Open Prepress Interface (OPI) code in the PDF file.
  • We do not accept any locked or encrypted PDFs.
  • Crop marks or other printer’s marks should not be used on any files.
  • Submitted PDF files should not contain bookmarks, comments, invisible objects, or metadata.
  • The book description should be in compliance with the rules listed here.
  • Missing Pages
  • Title missing on the front cover
  • Missing barcode
  • Incorrect pagination
  • Books with upside down pages

Cover Specifications

Cover Page Size
Covers should be submitted on either an 18” x 12” or 19” x 13” page depending on the book’s trim size and page count. Use the charts below to determine the correct page size.

If the trim size is between 4” x 6” and 8.25” x 10.5” and the interior page count meets the following specs, please submit the cover on an 18” x 12” page:

Trim Width
(in inches)
White Paper
(444 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.002252
Cream Paper
(400 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.0025
Full-Color Book
(426 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.002347
4 - 7.56828746500
7.62780700500
7.75660600500
7.88550500500
8.00440400400
8.12330300300
8.25220200200

If the interior is black and white and the trim size is between 4” x 6” and 8.5” x 11.69”, or the interior is color and the trim size is between 4” x 6” and 8.5” x 11,” and the interior page count meets the following specs, please submit the cover on an 19” x 13” page:

Trim Width
(in inches)
White Paper
(444 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.002252
Cream Paper
(400 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.0025
Full-Color Book
(426 ppi)
spine calculation: 0.002347
8.12828828500
8.25828770500
8.27828750500
8.5630570500

Cover Formatting
Covers should be centered left to right on the spine. Artwork should be shifted down so that there is only .125” bleed at the bottom of the page.

  • Center cover artwork from left to right on the spine, and shift it down to .125" bleed at the bottom of the page.
  • Flatten all layers in the native file.
  • Bleed of .125” is required on all sides. The bleed at the bottom of the page must not exceed .125”.
  • There should be no "live" elements within .25” of the trim lines.
  • We accept both RGB and CMYK color spaces, and profiled RGB or CMYK spaces.
  • We recommend 300 DPI image resolution. Higher resolutions are acceptable.

Spine Measurements for Black & White Books

  • 60# white paper = 444 ppi (page count x .002252")
  • 60# cream paper = 400 ppi (page count x .0025")

Spine Measurements for Color Books

  • Color paper = 426 ppi (page count x .002347")

Spine Text and Barcodes
We only print spine text on books with more than 130 pages. Text on larger spines must be sized to fit the spine, with at least 0.0625" of space between the text and the edge of the spine.

All covers must have a 300 DPI barcode on the back cover, and the barcode must be at least 1.5" wide and .9" high.

Book Block Specifications

Page Size

  • For books without interior bleed, create “one-up” text files on true trim size pages. (There cannot be any hidden areas of the page.)
  • See “Interior Full Bleed” below for details on books with interior bleed.

Font

  • Embed font information
  • Do not use type three fonts

Margins and Alignment
Content should be positioned on the page according to its location in the document:

  • Pages printed on the left side of the book (even pages), should be set up from the right-side gutter.
  • Pages printed on the right (odd pages), should be set up from the left-side gutter.
  • This formatting is called "mirror margins" in many document-authoring tools.

Allow .75" for the gutter (the left-side on odd pages, and the right-side on even pages) and .5" for the outside margin (the right-side on odd pages and the left-side on even pages).

Exception: If a .75" gutter creates an outside margin smaller than .5", then the margins should be even, left and right (centering the text block on the page). We recommend including larger gutters on books with more than 600 pages.

Pagination

  • Book pages must be numbered in sequential order.
  • All books must be paginated independently from preceding volumes (e.g. Volume I-Book 1 ends with page 300 and Volume II-Book 2 should begin with page 1, not page 301.)

Color and Halftone Images
Resolution: 300 DPI or higher
Format: JPEG (JPEG Photoshop compression level with quality 10 or higher), or TIFF (use JPEG or lossless compression)

Monochrome Bitmap Images
Resolution: 600 DPI
Format: TIFF (CCITT Group 4 (preferred), LZW, or no compression)

Media Box
The media box of the PDF should contain all the content to be printed.

Interior Full Bleed
Full-bleed interiors (with content that extends past the edge of the page, with no white space on the edges) must have  .125" of bleed at the top, bottom, and outer margins (exclude the gutter). For example, a finished book with a trim size of 6” x 9” requires a 6.125” x 9.25” interior PDF.