Monthly Archives: October 2013

Has the book changed over the centuries?

Has the book changed over the centuries?

Hair styles changed through the generations, in the 60’s it was a bouffant or beehive which was high off your head, 70’s hair styles consisted of the feather look, the 80’s it was the groovy high hair but messy, looked like it was never brushed!!  Do book styles ever change with trend?

Of course the images on covers and interiors of books change throughout the generations.  The 1950’s the children book Dr. Seuss’ famous book “The Cat In the Hat” came about, the 60’s the great novel “The Outsiders” by author S.E. Hinton,  Seventies books had images of psycho delicate images, bell bottoms, the hot corvette car, a published book that was a high light “Salem’s Lot” by Stephen King.  The 80’s top book was “This Boy’s Life” by Tobias Wolff.  Of course; these books are hits in the opinion of their own.

How drastic did book binding change through generations furthermore centuries!   Early and medieval codices hard cover books were bound with flat spines, printing was hand written on parchment paper and sewn with strong cords.  It wasn’t until the 15th Century books had rounded spines associated with hard cover binding today. In the 19th Century the soft cover books came about, which the book block was glued to the spine.

What binding styles is the new trend?  There are so many book binding styles to choose from since the earlier centuries.  There is the classic hard cover book binding which consists of the paper wrapped over a board, glued with end papers, book block can be glued and sewn together. This book type of quality is functional for children’s books, photography books, cook book and art books.  Another nifty binding method which works well for black and white novels is the perfect bound book. Binding of a perfect bound book the book block is glued to the spine, which is cost effective binding for novel type books. There’s the classic comb binding, spiral binding and wire-o binding for the cookbooks, manuals that need to stay flat when viewing. Furthermore, new techniques were developed like embossing & debossing, foil stamping with many different colors, different types of coatings like glitter lamination, UV coating, part scent like a scratch and sniff spots that actually smells like a chocolate or whatever. Then there is screen printing, screening UV & glitter UV, screening wrinkling, flocking, press grain, heat-seal paper stamping on leather, tracing paper, 2D & 3D printing and the list goes on and on.

So it seems as the hair trends, styles change through eras, book binding and printing seem to stay the same beside the improvement of techniques and paper options. However now the digital age is here there are those darn e-books.

PRC Book Printing is here to keep up with the trends and perhaps create new ones. Contact us for a quote 1-888-659-8230 / or maybe to help create your next book using all the new techniques.


ISBN Number?

Whether you are planning to print and sell a hardcover book, soft cover book, cook book, coffee table book, children book, calendar, and etc.. The ISBN number is a very important part of the process. ISBN stands for International Standard Book number.  You can purchase your ISBN numbers online through various agents/brokers.  PRC Book Printing recommends to purchase your US ISBN through R.R. Bowker, to purchase online:  You will receive a 13 digit number, which uniquely identifies a book and the publisher/author.

The 13 digit number is created in five parts:

1.      “978” this is the prefix

2.      Group or country identifier number

3.      Publisher ID

4.      Title ID, which is for a particular title or edition

5.      At the end a “check digit” which validates the ISBN

Current pricing as of October 2013, to purchase 1 ISBN# the cost is $125 plus $50 for the barcode.  If you purchase 10 ISBN’s (if you are producing a series or multiple editions of a book) the current price is $250 plus $25 for the barcodes (current pricing taken from R.R. Bowker website-10/1/13, does not include taxes, fees or whatever else is applicable).

It’s important to note that the only way to brand yourself as the publisher of a book is to own the ISBN. Many financial support or vanity publishers (“vanity publisher” term describing a publishing house which authors pay to have their books published) exist online that say they are “giving” you an ISBN as part of their publishing package but there is no legitimate way for them to do this because Bowker is the exclusive US agent for ISBNs. What the vanity presses are actually doing is letting you use one of their ISBNs. This distinction is important because that means the ISBN has their publisher prefix and NOT yours. In other words, the vanity presses are the publisher of record, NOT you. Many people have been misled, believing that they are the publisher, when they are not and it can cause problems down the road when you try to market the book.

Given that vanity presses have always had an extremely bad reputation in the publishing industry; it’s a good idea to avoid them. Reviewers and bookstores generally won’t touch books produced by vanity presses. When you publish with a vanity press, under some contracts, you may not have complete ownership rights of the books that are produced. If you have to pay someone to publish your book and they say you’ll get royalties and “your own” ISBN, be very wary. It’s probably a vanity press.

If you never plan to sell your book through any online channels like Amazon or work with bookstores, distributors or libraries, it’s possible you can avoid getting an ISBN.

The barcodes are usually placed on the back cover of books.  If you are printing a cover and dust jacket, you will need to place on both.  Placement of the barcode is usually at the lower right hand corner of the back cover.

We highly recommend our self publishers/authors to add the ISBN number to their cook books, children’s books, hard cover book and soft cover books!

Please contact PRC Book Printing, if you are interested in book printing services, Email us: or Call us TOLL FREE:  888.659.8320!

Quoting your Book Project Overseas

Quoting your Book Project Overseas

When you send a quote request to multiple overseas printing vendors’ and one pricing is higher than the other vendor.  Review the quote with a fine comb; check the specifications on the quote for comparison.  Most vendors do not include many items like customs clearance, in-land shipping, port processing fees, FedExing, proofing, advances, and lots of other details from the quote which pertains to your final price in your quote request. Always be sure when evaluating the quotes you are comparing APPLES TO APPLES, not Apples to Oranges!

Clients have approached us and stated our pricing is much higher, compared to other vendors.  We request to view the competitor quotes with the company name removed, and 9 x’s out of 10, the hidden costs are not presented, which makes our pricing the complete opposite actually lower.  Usually the paper weight is not comparable; some vendors tend to change the paper weight to get your business using a cheaper paper weight.  Another item missing from our competitors quote is the proofing. This could be huge especially when it is a 4 color printing throughout. High Resolution hard digital proofs range from $4 to $6 per page. You can do the math, but the cost difference could be in the thousands just in proofing. Most client’s / people when viewing a quote their eye tends to go directly to the cost and not noting the details in the estimate.

Here is an example, a client requested a cloth cover book with foil stamping & embossing on the cover, 150 pages, 4 color throughout with 100 lb interior paper stock, requested DDP shipping.  When she received our quote she stated we were 30% higher.  When the client sent over the competitors quote, they had a standard hard cover book (paper cover with printing on it, not cloth) – 157 gsm (100 lb) wrapped over 2.5 mm board with 128 gsm paper (80 lb) (see blog tab lb vs gsm) for the interior. Then to top it off this competitors’ quote only included PDF proofs. Let’s say hard digital proofs cost $4 per page with a total page count of 150 pages, you are talking about $600.00 in price difference right there and that doesn’t include FedExing the proofs to you. Now the shipping!!! This is a very common issue we run across. This vender just quoted delivery FOB Florida with a zip code. What does that mean? What it really means it doesn’t include all the shipping related fees.   Now how do you request a cloth cover, DDP shipping and that is not even mentioned in the quote???  When the client went back to the vendor about the issues noted, the price increased drastically.

So the point of this blog, please be sure you are checking all details on your quote and watch for those hidden expenditures!  When comparing quotes for a hard cover book printing, children book printing, board book printing, and soft cover book printing overseas be sure you check the wrapping you requested, the boarding which the cloth, leather or paper is wrapping, paper weight, shipping, proofing is accurate.  Make sure they are Smyth sewn and then case bound; this offers a more sturdy binding method.  When comparing for a perfect bound book printing overseas is the book glued only or did you request signature sewn and then glued?  These are the little tidbits which can throw off the comparisons.

Send us a quote request today, PRC Book Printing will quote your project accurately and provide you with no hidden fees!  Click on our Request a Quote Tab, email us: or simply give us a call at 888.659.8320! Check out our overseas book printing page to check out our samples!