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Book Publishing Timeline for Your Next Release

Book Publishing Timeline

Book publishing process is not any rocket science. It is quite a simple process for which the foremost condition is one has to plan a story and write. Once you complete writing the book, edit it yourself and share it with some people who shall actually read it. Take feedback from them and rewrite. Thereafter give it for professional editing where the editing shall cover both line editing and copy editing. Choose the route you want to take in regard to publishing and choose from amongst traditional publishing and self-publishing. Design a marketing plan and launch strategy. Release the book.

For manuscript preparation, you have to write your book first. And to write, one need a thinking time and give your thoughts a structure. Decide what you want to say in your writing, who is the target reader and if you are writing for a journal- which type of journal should you send the writing to, what shall interest the audience in your writing and who can be your cowriter for this writing. Thereafter start the writing. Writing is a complex task where you have to be at your best. A ‘real’ time is to be set aside for writing. You need to identify which is the most conducive environment for you to write.

When you are preparing the final draft for your manuscript, set a margin of 1 inch, align the text to the left, use Times New Roman font with font size of 12, write in black text with white background, and indent each paragraph by ½ inch. Double space the lines with single space between sentences, create a header in the top right corner. Always begin chapters on new pages and end the manuscript with a hash mark on the center. Use italics when necessary but never underline particularly in novel manuscripts.

Editing and proofreading are needed when you have completed writing your manuscript-in fact editing starts before you complete your first draft only as this does a check on the logistics of your writing and grammar, checking each sentence carefully ensuring they are well designed and serving their purpose; surface-level errors are secondary there. These errors are rectified during proofreading which is done only when editing is over as this being the final stage of the writing process, checks on grammatical, punctuation and spelling errors.  The following table explains the role of editing and proofreading and explains the differences also:



Language formatting for consistency; Improves the overall quality of the text;
Writing improvement; Improves any language issues, in accordance with the purpose of the text;
Grammar, spelling and typing mistakes elimination; Clarification of expressions;
Ensures a document is ready for publication; Removal of errors and inconsistencies;
Cheaper than editing. Maximization of the impact of discourse, particularly on objectivity and assertiveness.



Book layout design, or typesetting is the art of creating a book’s interior. It involves all of the decisions that influence the way readers experience the content of the printed book: fonts, spacing, the styling of chapter headings, margins, etc. It is the book design and layout which provide the ease and comfort to the reader, hence a careful and thorough assessment of content is needed for deciding on book’s style and functionality and to decide on the book design and content. For image-heavy books on cookery, photography, poetry, etc., content-led design is very important. Similarly, for text-only books, one has to be conscious about matter and genre- and accordingly typefaces are used and chapters are divided. Alignment should be done in a professional way ensuring both spacing and grids are flawlessly adjusted to the needs of your book. For alignment to be done in perfect way, the lines in the book need to have consistent vertical spacing, as well as be spaced so they’re all roughly the same length, i.e. justified. Also it is to be ensured that the grid is consistent making sure the text lines up horizontally from page to page. Margin in the pages of the book is also very important as any mistake there would swallow up the text when the pages are bound. Ideally for a standard-sized book, the outer, top, and bottom margins are about 0.5 inches each, and the inner margins are 0.75-0.9 inches. This shall ensure the text is readable when the pages are bound, and all the margins ultimately appear about half an inch wide — just enough space for someone to hold a physical copy of the book open.

Cover design is a type of artwork presented as an illustration or photograph on the outside of a published book. It is the book cover which draw the reader most of the time- hence it is of extreme importance for the author. Hence before one designing the book cover, he should always gather visual inspiration first to help guide your cover’s overall look and feel. A book cover needs to support the themes the book explores and also reflect the mood of the book. Hence, a serious book should have a relatively serious cover, while a fun beach read needs an entirely different kind of aesthetic. Hence it is important that the book’s main themes are outlined and kept top of mind when deciding on the kind of imagery one want to use on the cover. Different genres have different conventions when it comes to covers- like a steamy romance novel shall always have a couple embracing on the cover or a true crime books usually feature dark covers hinting at the crime. Since a lot of book browsing happens online, covers are usually shrunk down to thumbnail size. If the book cover looks cluttered at thumbnail size, the author shall loose potential readers. Hence it is important that once choose one focal element for your cover. This could be part of the image used on the cover, or it could be the title of the book. The font and the palate in the cover is also important for the book cover as they play a pivotal role in attracting the reader along with the layout. .

Book printing is the process of transferring written content from an author or publisher to a publication form. There are four main steps that makes the book printing and production are pre-press, press, post-press, and binding. The pre-press stage ensures that all the pages are in order, including any necessary design changes or corrections. The press stage is essentially creating individual copies of a book on sheets of paper or a web using digital printers and offset printers. The post-press stage is where the printed books are trimmed to make them the size you desire. The outside of each book block (the pages) will be glued together inside to create sections. These sections form individual “signatures” which then get stitched into spines before finally being bound back onto themselves by yet another spine piece – all through various means such as adhesive tape binding or any other form of binding depending on what’s needed. The types of book printing services that are normally availed are Offset printing (the most common format for printed books)- which is the process of transferring a printed image onto a surface, digital printing using a computer to produce a digital image of the text and graphic elements printed. Print-on-demand is a relatively new term in the publishing industry and have been there for the last two decades only and it the way to save money in the publishing process by using digital technologies to print and bind books one at a time as they are ordered.

The large traditional publishing houses does most of the marketing and distribution with their own investment pumped in running campaigns and distributing paperback copies to their listed bookstores- but the author has to depend on the whims of the publishing houses only if they are not putting the extra effort from his side. However, the lesser ones and self-published books require the author’s efforts and resources for marketing the books. Few promotion and marketing ideas that always help the authors are

  • Having own blog or website help potential readers finding the author even before he finish writing your book. Updating the site with articles that would surface in the target audience’s organic search results helps a lot in the long run. As he comes close to the launch date, he can create buzz around the book through contests and book giveaways.
  • Increase the online presence to spread the word about the book. He can post his articles on popular websites that receive a lot of traffic, or contribute on forums that discuss topics related to the book.
  • Leverage the power of social media by using social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. helps a lot. Create an exclusive book page in Facebook with details of the book and lots of keywords in the description. Book Pages may also provide ratings, reviews, a purchase tab and few details about the Author. This connects the potential readers more towards the book.
  • Following the most popular books of the same genre and study what has helped them to sell.
  • Get reviews for your book by approach reviewers of any of your previous books with a free copy and a polite request. In case one is a first time author, he can use his friends to help him with the review. Influential book bloggers, popular authors in your genre, and newspapers for editorial reviews can also be considered for this.
  • Start with a pre – commercial launch with a limited number of copies at a rate lesser than that which would be available when launched, serves as one of the powerful tools to attract readers to get the initial traction.
  • Run effective seasonal campaigns Short campaigns which maybe seasonal or festive are seen to have more engagement and conversion than those which are run continuously throughout the year.
  • Provide three to four free copies, preferably paperback, to the most loyal client or reader who would ensure the author get a review from him/her and also spread the word about the title.

Book Launch is any event wherein the author invites a group of people to celebrate the arrival of an upcoming book. The writer normally reads from the new book and sign books at these events. Invitees include friends and family, fans of the author, or people who frequent the bookstore or venue. A successful book launch help the authors to reach out to masses in case of both traditional as well as self-publishing.  The three most important benefits of a Book Launch are it gives the author opportunity to meet the readers and provide new readers with the opportunity to form a connection with you. A book launch party is an opportunity to increase publicity and point new readers to other promotional pathways. It also provide a sense of completion as once one launch the book, he can sit back and relax knowing your work is complete. Even if the launch party is just the first stop on a wider book tour, take some solace in the fact that, at least for now, hard work of writing is over.