Friday, December 6, 2013

Notes on Createspace File Prep, and NaNoWriMo News

Happy Friday, everyone! Wow, this week flew by! I'm knee-deep in the launch prep for I, Zombie and have had so much fun shouting about it everywhere. We'll see how it goes. On to other, more production type things! Today, I'm talking about something to beware of when printing your book with Createspace. Let me start off by saying I love Createspace. I think they're the best, easiest option out there for Indie authors to get print books. However, the issue I'm detailing today really needs to be something they fix somehow. Perhaps a special account for those that know what they're doing.

So, I decided to release an anthology of the first 5 Mystic books in print and use the covers that will be changed globally when Markaza's book is released next year. Because of this, I also revamped the interior. Well, this caused me a huge problem. Let me show you what I mean; telling you isn't going to help.

I love typography. I think it makes some of the most beautiful art on the planet. Apparently, CS doesn't agree with this practice. When I uploaded my book with this pretty type-style artwork on the chapter openings pages:

(I adore it. What you see here is the page trimmed to the bleed lines. Now keep in mind, the M would disappear into the gutter quite a bit and it's cutting off the C and the dot on the I. Still, pretty, eh? And matches the cover perfectly!)

They rejected it.

Why? The reason they gave me is that the text is too close to the edge of the page which would result in quite a bit of it being cut off during production. There should be at least a .125" margin on all sides.

I e-mailed them and outlined that the text they were referring to wasn't meant to be read, it was there for artistic purposes, was a 330dpi image (this is why their auto-checker didn't find any issues), and there was a ONE inch margin around the text in the body of the book (more than they require, but an industry standard). Hell yeah, I was gonna fight for my design!

I waited less than 24 hours when a response showed up in my inbox. A human would try and explain my design to the other humans who look over the book and get the approval for the proof regardless. That person would try and push my design through to production and I should look for an answer sometime over the next two days. YAY!

Excitement flooded me! I was gonna get my beautiful type treatment!

My joy was short lived, however, when I was told there was no way the team could push it through.


At that point, I'd exhausted all my options and decided to just reformat the chapter opening pages without my beautiful type art.

This is what I ended up with:

While still fun, and very Markaza-ish, it's just not what I would've preferred.

Oh well.

Why am I sharing this with you? To keep you from using type in a full bleed page design intended for Createspace and having them reject it. Twice. As always, I'm trying to save you from a permanent red spot on your forehead from banging it on the desk out of frustration.

Lesson learned. I feel like the bad child who had their hand slapped. *Note to self: Never EVER use type that might be cut off in ANY way in your book design until you've convinced CS to create a special account just for you*

Yeah, that's my next goal. I'm gonna try to get them to change the policy where this is concerned. *grin*

I'll keep you updated.

On to the next part of this post!

If you were a participant in NaNoWriMo this year, you're now able to go pick up your winner goodies! There's some awesome stuff on the offering block so I suggest you go check it out.

Look very closely at the Lulu offer. That's all I'm going to say about it.

Have you ever experienced this kind of thing with your printer? How did you handle it?

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!



  1. This is easily avoidable by not using actual type to the bleed—convert the type to an image. If it's a vector element, you can "Create Outlines" in Photoshop or Illustrator or whatever. Then it won't trip up CreateSpace.

    1. That actually doesn't work. My type was an image. They rejected it anyway. Said it would get flagged during printing. Visual, not file. :) Thanks for the comment :)


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