Createspace is a site authors can join to design, print and sell their books on Amazon.com.
Createspace is one among many different digital printers one can use when self-publishing their work. Not to be confused with a vanity publisher, Createspace is strictly a printer run by Amazon.com. They aren’t responsible for formatting, editing or marketing your book. However, they will print your title as a paperback book and list it on Amazon.com. Everything else is entirely up to the author.
- Choose a trim for your book. Currently, most book sizes are available through Createspace. The trim or size you use all comes down to personal taste as well as presentation. Some of the most popular choices are either six by nine inches or five by eight inches.
- Mind those margins. When getting the interior of your book ready, you’ll want to make sure you have enough of a margin for things such as title and page number, but not too much that it blocks in the meat of your book. A good margin to set on all sides is around half of an inch. Then, add about another quarter inch for your gutter. The gutter is essentially where all of the pages come together once it’s bound. Without the gutter, readers may not be able to see some of the writing.
- ISBN numbers—yours or theirs? An ISBN number is an identification number that tells retailers things such as the book’s title, author and publisher. You can use either your own or have Createspace supply one to you for free. The only downside to this is that you book will have Createspace listed as a publisher. Most readers won’t even notice such a small detail, but it comes down to the label you’d like to have on your book.
- Matching titles. The title you choose for your project on Createspace must match the title listed on your cover as well as inside the book as well. This also pertains to the author’s name. Should any of these details not match the project details given to Createspace when you first started your project, it won’t be approve for printing. The reason for this is because once you create a new project, that title and author name is tied to that ISBN number. ISBN numbers cannot be reused, so choose your title wisely.
- Convert to PDF. A PDF or a file formatted in the Portable Document Format is an electronic file used by most printers and self-publishing companies. To convert both your cover and interior files to PDF, you can either use Adobe Acrobat or other free options such as Primo PDF.
- Upload Your Files. Upload all of your files onto Createspace.com. Double check the information you’ve submitted for any errors. If things check out, you can submit your project for review. This can take a few days for the editors to get back to you. Either your project will be approved, or they’ll flag it for changes should your project information and the books itself not match.
The last thing you’ll want to do before making your book available for purchase is to order a proof of the finished project. You cannot publish without having a proof made and then shipped to you in order to check for errors or miscalculations. While you could ask for a proof and then approve it for publication minutes later, it isn’t recommended. Take the time to get the proof and look it over. There may be errors or the colours you picked for your cover may be too dark. The proof is an author’s tool to see how the book will look once it’s in print. Once you’re happy with the book, you can approve it for publication. Any changes you make will require ordering another proof in the future before those edits can take place.