To clarify: In Word, I made the page itself 18.72 x 12.50 and created the back, spine, and front with text boxes according to spec (9.13/0.47/9.13). I placed text and pics well within the borders of each box. Once uploaded, crop marks on the web page indicate that I'm outside of the limits.
I'm still confused as to why my cover design is overflowing into the green area, maybe as much as half an inch or more. Please check my analysis below:
The one piece cover requirements page offers no hint that there are other limitations. In the page that Kevin referred to (http://www.lulu.com/uk/help/book_covers_faq#onepiece_dimensions), my 8.25" x 10.75" text (18.72" x 12.50" whole cover size (9.13" each cover size + 0.472" spine)) is listed and indicates a usable size of 18.25" H x 12.5" W. Does this mean that I lose 18.72" - 18.25" = 0.47" on the height? The width has no 'gutter.'
If so, I'm guessing the height loss (0.47") is split into two = 0.24" from the top and bottom. Right?
The spine calculator indicates my spine is not 0.472" but 0.46". No gutter or encroachment is mentioned. Correct?
Why wasn't all this included in the original instructions? Do I understand correctly how much 'gutter' I need to have around the edges of the covers and then around the spine?
I'm more than a little surprised (and irritated) that I have to redesign what should have been a pretty simple cover for the third time. I'd like to avoid a fourth.
Do I understand all of this correctly? Did I miss anything?
I pulled everything toward the center of the book cover and was able to keep all text and pictures out of the green area. However, when I enlarge my browser to 400% to examine details, it does appear that the lettering on the spine is a bit too far to the right of the spine. How accurate is this browser rendering of the final product?
I'm wondering if I need to pull the letters on the spine back to the left a space or so.
The green area is the area in which a crop is likely to be performed. Your cover is supposed to be cut off behind there, which is why the dimensions given for your book's cover by the Lulu wizard should be OK. Don't try to make the cover small enough to go 'inside' the green border or you'll go mad. :wink:
Follow the size instructions and when you see it previewed in the wizard, with the green border around the outside and cutting off some of the cover, just make sure that there's no text or vital imagery close to - or behind - the green border. It should then be OK. There can still be a little variance on the exact position of the text - I've just had to shift the title on a new book slightly when I saw the printed version - but that's what the proofing process is for. To get the size for the cover I just followed the Lulu wizard dimensions and made sure my front and back text were shifted away from the edge. I just needed to adjust the front text slightly.
This is a completed cover I uploaded. I'm not using the wizard. The crop marks came as a surprise, but I revamped the cover as I noted above to be inside of them. My last concern is the spine lettering. When I enlarge my browser to 400% to examine details, it does appear that the lettering on the spine is a bit too far to the right of the spine. How accurate is this browser rendering of the final product? I'm wondering if I need to pull the letters on the spine back to the left a space or so.
I realise that you're using a one-piece cover, but the process you're using is still part of a 'wizard'. When you upload your one-piece pdf, it will be previewed in a window showing the green border - as you've seen. That's part of the cover stage wizard. The fact remains that the edges of your cover should be behind the green border because that's (roughly) the area that will be cut from the final printed cover. So for instance on the book I made recently, the height of the cover I had to create was 9.25 inches - as identified by the wizard - though the actual height of the book, and its cover, is 9 inches. Obviously .25 of an inch is likely to be cropped, .125 from the top and .125 from the bottom. Roughly.
As for the centering of your spine, that's more difficult, especially as you've chosen vertical text. If you look at most books you'll see the writing is actually at right angles, unless it happens to be a particularly thick book with room for vertical writing. In effect all you can do is put your text in a text box and manoeuvre it until it seems to be centred. There's a possibility of about an 1/8 inch offset for the spine anyway, which Lulu says is typical for most books, not just theirs. When you've finished the publication process and uploaded your cover, you'll see at the last stage an indication of the front and back covers and the spine - that gives an approximate picture of how it will look. You can play around with the image if it still doesn't look right. However, the only real proof of the pudding is in the printing.
I am sure there is a Preview option that does not show the trim and fold marks. At least there is in the new '2-piece' cover wizard. Really, nothing you do in the Wizards is carved in stone. Simply do it and have a look at the results (via that Preview option and the Print-Ready PDF) and if you are not happy with it then adjust it accordingly.