Book Printing Hardback

Written by Christopher Ransom
Bookmark and Share

Paperback books outnumber hardback books by a ratio of 3 to 1, sometimes more or less depending on the genre or category, and this is no less true when printing your own book than it is in the world of traditional publishing. Look around any bookstore and you'll see what I mean. There are a few reasons for this, but the main reason is the bottom line- book printing hardback books just costs more than printing paperback books. Most hardback books retail for twenty to thirty dollars, and even with discounts that's a price point above the demand for most books.

Some of the other reasons why publishers choose paperback over hardback printing for a given title are ease of functionality, size constraints, and other marketing factors. For instance, many how-to manuals are designed to bend and fold so they are easier read while performing a separate task (cooking, repairing a car, etc ... ). Also, while a publisher may feel there is a legitimate audience for a specific title, they may feel the book has a better chance going out in paperback at a lower price point to help shoppers take a risk on an unknown author or untested subject.

When You Should Consider Book Printing Hardback

Ultimately, that will be for you, the publisher to decide. But some factors to consider before shelling out the extra dollars for a hardback book printing may help you make the decision. Starting from a marketing perspective, look at your desired audience of readers. If you're publishing a photography book or art book you may be depending on large pages made of heavy paper stock to bring your photos to life, in which case hardback may be the only format strong enough to support the pages. However, if you've written a slim romance novel, you should realize that many fans of the genre prefer to blaze through a reading in one sitting and are reluctant to spend twenty dollars or more on a book no different than the other three or four they are reading that week.

Unfortunately, for most of us, the cost of printing hardback books is the largest factor in the decision. You may have written a religious treatise that is destined to sell a million copies and be handed down from generation to generation, deserving the unmatched quality of the hardback format. If you're on the fence about whether to go with a book printing hardback or paperback, you should have your printer explain the costs of each. For the cost of 500 hardback books, you might be able to afford a print run of 1000 books in paperback. You may decide that it's more important for your book to carry the prestige afforded by a hardback book printing than for you to save a few dollars per copy. If you do, stand by your choice and don't forget to sell the book's quality in addition to its contents. Author John Gray's now famous bestseller "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" was available only in hardback for years and people had no problem shelling out twenty bucks to better understand their relationships.


Bookmark and Share