Book Printer

Written by Christopher Ransom
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When we talk about your book printer, are we talking about a business, a person, or machine? All three, actually. Businesses who print books are book printers, but so is the machine that is used to turn your manuscript into a book, also known as a book printing press.

Rather than go into a semantic exercise, let's take a closer look at the role of a person who calls himself a book printer, from a career, you might say. After all, you're likely going to be paying this person or his company anywhere from a couple hundred to several thousand dollars. It might be worth a little time to see the job from his point of view. Who knows, you might even find your self at the threshold of a new career.

The Myth of Apron-Clad, Ink-Stained Book Printer

Actually, that's yesterday's image of the book printer. With the advent of today's modern book printing technology, your average book printer is probably more akin to a white collar graphic designer with a B.A. under his or her belt than the blue collar grinder sweating over heavy machinery, manually applying ink to the printing press in a dark and lonely cavern. While book printing jobs are still service-sector oriented, competitive book printers must have a grasp of many different graphic design and word processing computer programs such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, QuarkXPress, Adobe PDF and Illustrator. Additionally, a good book printer must have knowledge of project management, sales, marketing, and advertising experience in the book industry.

Book printer salaries vary depending on the level of experience but $50,000-$70,000 per year is not uncommon for someone with five years under his or her belt. It's comforting to know that the staff in charge of printing your book swings a little more weight than the part-time student down at the local Kinko's, because printing your book requires a whole lot more than just making copies.


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