Author
Tasha1
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎08-11-2012

Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

[ Edited ]

Hi

I am new to publishing and would like some advice. I want to create a children's book aimed at ages 3-6. The story has already  been written and I have been looking for an illustrator to do the illustrations and book layout. I would like to know the information that I should give to the illustrator to ensure the book is the right format and size for publishing on lulu and Amazon etc. so my questions are:

1) What is the best size for a colour children's book that will be distributed for sale? What size is the most marketable?

2) What page length is required? 24 pages? to get an ISBN?

3) Is there any special instructions that I should give my illustrator to assist with creating the formatted book? Font size etc?

4) What is a good price for a children's book?

 

5)I also want to make this book in to an ebook - will the size etc need to be different?

 

Any other advice would be much appreciated.

 

Tasha

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Professor
Ken Anderson
Posts: 11,719
Registered: ‎02-11-2010

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

My friend Maggie is an expert in Kids book. See this thread for details http://connect.lulu.com/t5/Print-Books/Children-s-Book-Layout-Services/m-p/79203/highlight/true#M677...
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Author
Tasha1
Posts: 32
Registered: ‎08-11-2012

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

Thanks but I can't afford her services at the moment so if there is anyone who has published a children's book that is willing to share information I would appreciate it.

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Publisher
Michael Dobson
Posts: 666
Registered: ‎07-12-2010

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

[ Edited ]

I am new to publishing and would like some advice.

Shoot. Advice is free around here.

I want to create a children's book aimed at ages 3-6. The story has already  been written and I have been looking for an illustrator to do the illustrations and book layout.

That's going to cost you. Are you ready to pay for that?

I would like to know the information that I should give to the illustrator to ensure the book is the right format and size for publishing on lulu and Amazon etc.

There is no "set" size for a children's book. They come in all shapes and sizes. You choose.

1) What is the best size for a colour children's book that will be distributed for sale?

Same answer.

What size is the most marketable?

Size neither makes a book marketable, nor saleable.

2) What page length is required? 24 pages?

http://connect.lulu.com/t5/Product-Pricing-Information/What-paper-will-my-book-have-for-the-cover-an...

to get an ISBN?

http://connect.lulu.com/t5/ISBN-Distribution/How-to-get-an-ISBN-for-your-Book/ta-p/33617

3) Is there any special instructions that I should give my illustrator to assist with creating the formatted book?

Any instructions you would give your illustrator would be personal choices. Any illustrator worth his/her salt already knows how to illustrate for a book. You give them the size and what you want, they'll give you the product.

Font size etc?

Again. A personal choice. You decide on what font you want to use, you inform the illustrator. However, for a children's book, font really isn't the domain of the illustrator. That's your job as the writer. You decide that.

4) What is a good price for a children's book?

That depends upon a great deal of variables; cost of production, size and page number of the book, color or black and white, number of illustrations, etc.

A book of 20 pages should cost less than a book of 40 pages, etc. A book will color illustrations should cost more than one with black and white line drawings.

If Lulu charges you $6 to make the book, you shouldn't charge $24 to sell it. Ken can give you a proper percentage ratio, I'm not up on the mathematics of book sales.

5)I also want to make this book in to an ebook - will the size etc need to be different?

Ah. Ken Anderson can answer that one for you.



Regards,

Michael

Lulu's Red-Headed Stepchild and Sometime Poet


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Professor
kevinlomas
Posts: 17,593
Registered: ‎02-11-2010

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

Michael, stop making your replies look like me! It's confusing. :smileylol:

I am new to publishing and would like some advice. I want to create a children's book aimed at ages 3-6. The story has already  been written

No offence is intended, but just how many words are to be seen in most books aimed at that age? In fact it's a strange age band. Most 3 - 4s cannot read at all, so it's read to them. 5 - 6s, they should be starting to read, and be not bad by 6. Just a thought.

 and I have been looking for an illustrator to do the illustrations and book layout.

The entire book you mean? That will be costly. But that is actually two different jobs, even though many DIY publishers do it all themselves. But actually, you want someone to do it all do you not? all you have are some words.

 I would like to know the information that I should give to the illustrator to ensure the book is the right format and size for publishing on lulu and Amazon etc. so my questions are:

Whatever size of page you select here at Lulu. There are choices, but not many, especially if you want one of the free ISBNs.

1) What is the best size for a colour children's book that will be distributed for sale? What size is the most marketable?

They come in all shapes and sizes. Have a look around a book shop. The 'problem' you will face with POD is the high cost of all-colour printing, and that will make you choose very very carefully.

2) What page length is required? 24 pages? to get an ISBN?

It depends on the Project you start. But you will have to add a Copyright page (because the ISBN number goes on it too), and a Title Page. Not to mention a blank page or two to make it look better.

3) Is there any special instructions that I should give my illustrator to assist with creating the formatted book? Font size etc?

Take a look at books for the age group you are aiming at.

4) What is a good price for a children's book?

Cheap! But as I have said. PODis an expensive system, so you cannot really ask that until you see what it will cost. (You do not have to pay it, BTW, but the customers do!)

 

5)I also want to make this book in to an ebook - will the size etc need to be different?

No, but do you mean a PDF or an ePub? there's a big difference.

 

Any other advice would be much appreciated.

I suggest you read the entire Knowledge base and look at the How-to videos also.  http://connect.lulu.com/t5/Discuss/tkbc-p/forums_kb

 

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New Member
Ocicat
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-12-2013

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

Tasha,

Just saw your post -- hope I can help with some information, if you still need it.

The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI.org) has many talented illustrators who do just what you're looking for. However, they ARE pricey -- it depends on how many illustrations, how large, color or B/W, and the quality of the illustrator. When I priced illustrations for a book I was working on, quotes varied from $500 per illustration to $5,000! 

There are other sources of good illustrators on the web; you might also broadcast a need via social media to your friends. I discovered that someone I'd known for ages was a wonderful illustrator in his spare time and I never knew!

Sizes vary, but keep in mind what's easy to put on the printing press. Check online for standard printing sizes of children's books and you'll generally find a variety: 7.5x7.5, 8x8, 9x7, 8.5x8.5, and more. You need to decide on a size before getting your illustrations done, though -- it would be bad to have wide illustrations and choose a tall format later.

Most picture books are 32 pages. At least one page needs to be for the title of the book and printing information, etc., and usually the back of the first page is also reserved for other needed information (like ISBN, printer name, contact information, etc.). That leaves you 30 pages (sides) to tell your story.

However, I've seen great books for younger children done in a 124-page format and they worked fine. So make your book what it needs to be, but remember that traditional book printing requires pages be in multiples of four. 24, 28, 32, etc. That's so that the wider sheets that are printed can be folded in half (making two sheets per side/four sheets for both sides) and stapled or bound together.

You can buy blocks of ISBN numbers from Bowker online. However, they're expensive if you only need a few.

Your illustrator generally won't help you with formatting your book. They'll provide you with real (drawn/painted) or digital illustrations and you'll have to format those into your manuscript. What you'll need is a desktop publisher/typesetter/layout person. 

Prices for children's books vary depending on how large they are, how many illustrations, whether they're soft cover or hard, etc. Go to the bookstore and check out the prices there. You may need to charge a bit more than the books by authors who are selling in the thousands, but not too much more or the book won't sell because of price. 

Ebooks don't have sizes. Ebooks are just text and illustrations that flow one after the other in whatever layout you give them. Again, you'll need to find someone who will convert your finished layout into ebook format.

Not that you should necessarily use them as a printer, but www.48hrbooks.com has a lot of good information that may help you figure out more about what to do.

Good luck!

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Professor
kevinlomas
Posts: 17,593
Registered: ‎02-11-2010

Re: Children's book, size, length, distribution options?

Not that you should necessarily use them as a printer, but www.48hrbooks.com has a lot of good information that may help you figure out more about what to do.

 

Errm, but Lulu is also full of information, there's no need to read the site of a competitor ...

http://connect.lulu.com/t5/Print-and-eBooks/tkbc-p/forums_kb

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