Cover Layout

  • All Images or artwork must be submitted in CMYK format at a 300 dpi resolution.

  • When you lay out the cover of a book in a desktop application, make sure that the front and back covers, as well as the spine are designed as one contiguous page.

Example: A cover for a 360 page 6x9 book based on our 60lb paper.

Book cover template

Click here to download PhotoShop template

  • Bleed: Any background color or photograph that extends to the edge of the page after trimming is called a bleed. To ensure ink coverage to the bleed edge, the image or background color must extend .25 inch beyond the trim. This area will be trimmed away after printing. Neither trim nor registration marks should be placed inside the bleed area.

  • Spine Width: To determine the book's spine size, divide the number of pages by the paper's thickness (measured in "pages per inch" or ppi). Our 50lb paper is 536 ppi, our 60lb paper is 435 ppi, our 70lb is 384 ppi and our 80lb is 326 ppi. (Example: 256 page book printed on 60lb would be 256 ÷ 435 = 0.59" spine.) For "safety", provide at least .0625" tolerance within the text on the spine. There can be no printing on a spine that is less than .25" (1/4").

  • Other papers:

  • 60lb Warm White is 425.5 ppi

  • 70lb Warm White is 370 ppi

  • 80lb Gloss Book = .0039 Caliper @ 512 PPI.

  • 80lb Matte Book = .0046 Caliper @ 434 PPI.

  • 100lb Gloss Book = .0047 Caliper @ 426 PPI.

  • 100lb Matte Book = .0061 Caliper @ 328 PPI.


  • Spine Width and Variance: It is important to keep in mind that each book printed at Keystone is individually printed and bound. Therefore you should avoid hard vertical lines separating your front or back cover panels from your spine and should allow for at least a 0.125" variance of your spine on each side (for example, the text on a 1" spine should be no larger than 0.75" wide).

  • Color Breaks on the Spine: This involves a spine whose color is different from the color used on the front or back cover. We call this a "color break." Because the bulking of paper can vary slightly, it is inadvisable to create a color break between the spine and both the front and back covers. It is better to have only one color break, either on the front or the back.
    Another solution is to extend the spine color over onto the front and/or back cover by about 1/4 inch.

  • For best results text should be at least 0.25" from trim edges of the book.

  • If scanning to create the digital file, scan all images at 300 dpi CMYK.

  • Black elements should NOT be built in "Registration" black. These elements should be built out of "Rich" black. For best results, we recommend the CMYK values of 60% Cyan, 40% Magenta, 40% Yellow, and 100% Black. CMYK total value should not exceed 240%.

  • The barcode should be built in 100% Black only.

  • File Types Accepted:

  • Laying Out Your Cover with Adobe® InDesign (Video)

    Some very interesting book covers

    Get in touch!

    Address: 37 Industrial Blvd., Paoli, PA 19301
    Telephone: 484-318-7017
    FAX: 484-320-8743














Ligatures are not merely typographic novelties; they are both requisite and necessary. Don’t forget to use these special characters because ligatures look better than setting the same character combinations individually, they help achieve an even colour on the page, and solve the problem of character combinations jost-ling each other for space. However, there is a time and place for everything and ligatures should be avoided if you are going to adjust the overall letter-spacing of the text. This is because a ligature is a single character, and if you adjust the overall letter-spacing the internal spacing of the ligature will remain unchanged. If the ligatures don’t match the overall spacing of the your text, don’t use them.

When it comes to punctuation we have all done things we ought not to have done: and hyphens and dashes in particular are more sinned against than sinning, the unfortunate victims of typographic abuse. The hyphen (-) is used in compounds to clarify the unification of sense (‘a well-known statesman’) or where a noun and adjective are used attributively (‘a poverty-stricken family’). Dashes have a wholly different function: the en-dash (–) is used to donate a span (pp 10–52) or connect two terminal dates (the 1939–45 war). Em-dashes — an example of which is given here — are used to show the words they enclose are to be read parenthetically.

Small capitals
Always use proper small caps rather than dissembling and cloaking with simulated small capital letters. True small caps were specifically created to tone with the weight, colour and proportion of the upper-case letters and to sit comfortably with the lower-case letters. On the other hand, computer-generated capitals of a smaller size are invariably too light and too narrow and lack the essential design features, such as adjustments to proportions, stroke weights, length of serifs and other details that contribute to the legibility and aesthetics of small caps. It’s a subtle sophistication that separates the typographic wheat from the chaff.

Using inappropriate sizes of type for the measure is a common typographic transgression that will provoke your readers’ wrath. Uneven and widely spaced words are the result of too large a type size on too short a measure; too small a type size on too long a measure makes it difficult for the eye to follow. In all circumstances words must be evenly spaced and close setting is to be preferred. Words should only be as far apart as the width of the letter ‘I’ and there should be more space between the lines than the words. Double spacing after a full-point is an abomination of typists and should have no place in typography and so only the space of the line should appear after the full-point.

Typeface selection
Tame the devices and desires of clients for hideous and quirky typefaces, steer them instead towards the restrained and legible. Unholy mixes of typefaces should be avoided with greater reliance placed on design families. Choosing typefaces with an extended family is both logical and helpful as it is an easy way to simplify the typeface selection process. It is also a safe and effective way of mixing typefaces while keeping a client’s project looking clean and uncluttered. Persuade clients that using type’s full armory of upper and lower-case, caps, upper and upper-case italic, italic caps, upper and upper-case bold, bold caps and true small caps is a better alternative to introducing yet another font into the text.

There should be a total proscription on underlining words to indicate emphasis. This is an archaic habit practiced by typists in the days when manual typewriters offered no other facility for emphasis. It is a naïve habit, which also looks ugly as it simply severs the descending characters: don’t be caught transgressing. There are so many other tools in the typographic box that can be used to magnify the words: consider using bold, caps, small caps or italics to draw attention to a word depending on the circumstances. In addition varying the type size, making good use of white space can also be considered.

Widows and orphans
Have mercy on widows and orphans. A widow is a very short line – usually one word, or the end of a hyphenated word – at the end of a paragraph or column. A widow is considered poor typography because it leaves too much white space between paragraphs or at the bottom of a page. This interrupts the reader’s eye, diminishes readability and destroys the colour of the page. But widows can once again be reunited with the text either by some judicious editing or subtly adjusting the word space. Like a widow, an orphan is a single word, part of a word or very short line, except it appears at the beginning of a column or a page. This results in poor horizontal alignment at the top of the column or page. Orphans can be brought back in line by the same means as widows.

On Proofreading...

And then there is that other thing: when you think you are reading proof, whereas you are merely reading your own mind; your statement of the thing is full of holes & vacancies but you don't know it, because you are filling them from your mind as you go along. Sometimes -- but not often enough -- the printer's proof-reader saves you -- & offends you -- with this cold sign in the margin: (?) & you search the passage & find that the insulter is right -- it doesn't say what you thought it did: the gas-fixtures are there, but you didn't light the jets.

- Letter to Sir Walter Bessant, 22 Feb. 22 1898


“I was working on the proof of one of my poems all the morning, and took out a comma. In the afternoon I put it back again.”

― Oscar Wilde


Proofreading means examining your text carefully to find and correct typographical errors and mistakes in grammar, style, and spelling. Here are some tips.

Accurate proofreading and clear marking of corrections are indispensable requisites to the production quality of a book. Proofreading is the sole responsibility of the author. No one else will proofread the typeset text.

Proofreading is a prerequisite for effective written communication. The grammar and spellchecker in some software catches only some mistakes. To catch other less obvious errors you need to visually proofread your document. Get others involved. Asking a friend or a Writing Lab tutor to read your manuscript will let you get another perspective on your writing and a fresh reader will be able to help you catch mistakes that you might have overlooked

  • Work from a printout, not the computer screen. (But see below for computer functions that can help you find some kinds of mistakes.)

  • Read out loud. This is especially helpful for spotting run-on sentences, but you'll also hear other problems that you may not see when reading silently.

  • Use a blank sheet of paper to cover up the lines below the one you're reading. This technique keeps you from skipping ahead of possible mistakes.

  • Use the search function of the computer to find mistakes you're likely to make. Search for "it," for instance, if you confuse "its" and "it's;" for "-ing" if dangling modifiers are a problem; for opening parentheses or quote marks if you tend to leave out the closing ones.

  • If you tend to make many mistakes, check separately for each kind of error, moving from the most to the least important, and following whatever technique works best for you to identify that kind of mistake.
    For instance, read through once (backwards, sentence by sentence) to check for fragments; read through again (forward) to be sure subjects and verbs agree, and again (perhaps using a computer search for "this," "it," and "they") to trace pronouns to antecedents.

  • End with a spelling check, using a computer spelling checker or reading backwards word by word.
    But remember that a spelling checker won't catch mistakes with homonyms (e.g., "they're," "their," "there") or certain typos (like "he" for "the").


Book Block Specifications

  • KD Press expects to receive print-ready manuscript and cover files, and will not perform work of an editorial nature such as proofreading, editing for content, typesetting, or making font alterations throughout a book. A digital file must be ‘print ready’ and sent in accordance with the digital file submission instructions provided–to ensure that no problems will be encountered during the manufacturing process. Files are processed as received and are not pre-flighted prior to processing.

    KD Press allows for a 1/16" (0.0625 in / 2 mm) variance for ALL books printed. Please keep this in consideration when designing any text and cover files.

  • PDF COMPLIANCE: Files must be PDF/X-1a:2001 or PDF/X-3:2002 compliant. The PDF/X-1a:2001 setting is found in the Professional versions of Adobe Acrobat 6 or above (listed as PDF/X-1a in Acrobat 6 Professional). The PDF/X-3:2002 setting is found in the Professional versions of Adobe Acrobat 7 or above.

    Some of the reasons this setting is the most efficient to use when creating PDF files for print:

    1. Requires all fonts to be embedded. With PDF/X-1a:2001 or PDF/X-3:2002: if a font cannot be embedded, the PDF file will fail to create (unless default preferences have been altered). This should immediately tell the creator that the first issue to check is fonts (and the log should list the reason). A common reason a font will not embed using PDF/X-1a:2001 or PDF/X-3:2002 is due to licensing restrictions with the font.

    2. Converts RGB images/page items to CMYK. This is a critical check. RGB is how monitors handle color, but it is not intended for printing. If a file is sent as RGB, and prints as is, the shift that it goes through during the rip process may be significant enough to cause the customer to be dissatisfied with the final output creating extra time and costs for the book to print satisfactorily. A CMYK file will result in a truer representation of the color BEFORE a file is submitted.

    3. Trapping settings will be corrected. This is an issue with how colors interact with each other that generally preview correctly on screen, but can cause a problem when the ink is printed on the paper.

    4. Transparency will be flattened (no live transparency). Layering/special effects such as drop shadows should be rendered correctly so that there are no unexpected results when a file goes through the rip process.

      Creating PDF files from various desktop programs.
  • Review your PDF file for accuracy

    This is a very important – yet often overlooked – step in the process. Please open and review your newly created PDF to insure that all elements are present and properly represented in your PDF prior to submitting it for printing. Incomplete or incorrect digital files will put your project behind schedule.

  • Microsoft Word: do not use the ‘shortcut’ button/icon in the tool-bar to create a PDF of your text file.
    Please use the ‘print’ menu: for instructions on how to do this, click here.

  • If book block is created as a Postscript (.ps) file, files should be created with a generic Adobe Postscript driver, and must be saved at a 600 dpi resolution.

  • If book block is created as a Postscript (.ps) file, files must be created using standard desktop publishing software to produce an Adobe PostScript Level 2 or Level 3 output file (using the setting "print to file").

  • Continuous tone photographs and artwork should be 8-bit gray-scale, at 300 dpi. Line art should be 1-bit black and white at 600 dpi.

  • All fonts should be embedded. PDF font subset should be set at 100%.

  • Margins: We require that all live text and graphic elements be at least 0.25" inside the trim. Many designers choose, to have a 0.75" inside margin with a 0.5" outside margin for text. Books with larger page counts (over 400 pages) should have larger inside margins to allow for margin lost during binding.

  • Interior text should be submitted as gray-scale only (e.g. do not submit as CMYK or RGB).

  • Text files must be submitted as a single PDF file, pages in numerical order (no printer spreads, i.e. page spreads).

  • The interior pages of your book are commonly referred to as your book block and should be formatted to the exact final trim size of your book. It should also be submitted as a single PDF file with one text page per PDF page. (eg a 6"x9" book block should be submitted as a 6"x9" PDF unless bleed is required.) KD Press will not scale a text file.

  • How to convert your Word file to PostScript file.


Copyright & Permissions

What Is a Copyright?

U.S. copyright law grants creators property protection for "original works of authorship." When you decide to use material copyrighted by others in your manuscript, it is your responsibility to obtain permission to use that material.

A manuscript is protected by copyright from the time of its creation. Currently, the term of a copyright in works created after January 1, 1978, other than works made for hire, endures for 70 years following the death of the last surviving author. Copyright in a work made for hire endures for 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter. Works published prior to January 1, 1978, have an original term of 28 years and a 47-year renewal term, totaling 75 years. Public Law 105-298, enacted on October 27, 1998, further extended the renewal term of copyrights still subsisting on that date by an additional 20 years, providing for a renewal term of 67 years and a total term of protection of 95 years.

Permission Requirements

Permission is the authorization to make a copy of material protected by copyright. These guidelines apply to any works under copyright, whether that source material is old or recent, in print or electronic form, and whether you change from one format or media to another.

Material That Requires Permission
You should always secure permission for the following:

  • single quotations or several shorter quotes from a full-length book (more than 300 words in total)

  • single quotations from a newspaper, magazine, or journal (more than 50 words)

  • artwork, photographs, or forms, whether or not from a published source (sometimes more than one permission is required for a photograph, e.g., one from the photographer and one from the creator of the underlying work shown in the photograph)

  • charts, tables, graphs, and other representations where, inevitably, you are using the entire representation (the copyrighted features are complete in themselves and inherent in the whole work)

  • material that includes all or part of a poem or song lyric (even as little as one line), or the title of a song

  • computer representations, such as the depiction of results of research on computerized databases, the on-screen output of software, reproduction of web pages or programming, the capture of Internet or other online screen shots (note that if a web site invites or authorizes copying, or specifies that it is "open source," and there is no notice indicating that it contains material original to others and is therefore under copyright, then you do not need to get permission)

  • any third-party software to be distributed as an electronic component with your work

  • clearances, including permissions for the use of trademarks and releases from privacy claims

Material That Does Not Require Permission

Copyright does not prevent the use of facts or ideas, but does protect the author's expression. Even when material is protected by copyright, there are situations where permission to reproduce is not required.

Fair Use

Fair use is a legal concept that allows the use of copyrighted material without the need to obtain permission from the copyright owner for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research under the law. This is a fact-based determination on a case-by-case basis, with the following four factors to be considered:

  • the purpose and character of the use of material from a copyrighted work

  • the nature of the copied work

  • the amount and substantiality of the material used in relation to the entirety of the original copyrighted work

  • the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work

If you are in doubt about whether your use of copyrighted material is a fair use, request permission. Even if your use constitutes fair use, and you do not have to obtain permission, you should give proper credit to the original source.


Generally, you can use material from any interview you conduct, including direct quotes, without securing a signed release if the circumstances and your notes clearly reveal that the source knew you were conducting an interview for possible publication and did not indicate intent to restrict your use of the material. Otherwise, ask the interviewee to sign a release.

Facts, Information, and Ideas

Generally, you may use facts you obtain from another work. However, note that copyright encompasses the format, organization, sequence, and style of presentation, as well as the sense or feeling of the original. When paraphrasing, even if you do not have to request permission, always give credit to the original source.

Public Domain

You do not need to obtain permission for materials that are in the "public domain." This includes all official U.S. government publications, as well as any materials for which the copyright has expired.




A warm white is a good shade to use with text heavy designs or publications, as it is easier on the eye to read due to the lower contrast between copy and paper.