Honor Earth Day by Going Green with eBooks, Print-on-Demand

Today marks the 43rd annual Earth Day celebration, a day when we all stop to appreciate our natural resources and gain awareness about preserving them for future generations.

In 1970 when the first Earth Day was celebrated, most Americans were tooling around in leaded-gas-chugging treecars past industrial plants that spewed waste from smokestacks and pipes. Disposable packaging was all the rage, yet recycling was on almost no one’s radar.

My, how things have changed! Today, many manufacturers are committed to using packaging that’s biodegradable or recyclable, and using production processes that produce less waste. Leaded gas is a thing of the past, and vehicles are more fuel-efficient overall. Communities and citizens are more aware than ever of the value of recycling, and many are equipped with special household receptacles for this purpose.

As a member of the literary community, you can play an even larger part in the environmental preservation movement by taking advantage of publishing avenues that lessen your book’s impact on the environment: namely, eBooks and print-on-demand publishing.

First, the print-on-demand option allows self-published authors to sell copies of their book without having a giant stack of hardcopies lingering in the basement. Print-on-demand means that copies of your book are “made to order” so to speak; they’re printed at the time of order. This keeps unsold copies from going to waste, thus saving paper.

The second option, eBooks, provide obvious ecological advantages. Since they exist solely in virtual — or electronic — form, no tree is harmed in the making of your book, regardless of how many copies you sell. By taking advantage of eBook publishing through Outskirts Press, you can sell via virtual means with Amazon Kindle, Apple iPad/iPhone and Barnes & Noble NOOK editions and enjoy wide distribution of your book without clearing a forest to do so.

Want to be a part of the “green” book movement? Contact Outskirts Press to find out how.

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A Self Publishers’ Book Printing Process

One of the biggest dilemmas that self-publishers face is deciding on the appropriate printing process. The ‘How to Print’ decision can be a bit easier once you know your target market and budget. Still, there are many options available to you, such as digital printing with print-on-demand distribution or offset printing and physical fulfillment.

Publishers use three major methods of book printing, which are:

Digital printing is perhaps the simplest and the fastest growing printing process. Normally, the files for printing are held at computer servers and can be printed, glued and bound together to produce a high quality book in under 10 minutes. This method works excellently for producing one-demand single copy of the book, as the whole book is produced in one cycle.

Offset printing on the other hand is more suitable for bulk-printing. This traditional type of print-press is fed one sheet at a time, or a complete web of paper, which can be printed in real-time. The web of sheets is then cut up and organized by special bindery equipment. The folding, trimming and assembling of the printing press is carried out right at the end, making sure that more than one book can be prepared at a time.

Letterpress technology is unquestionably the oldest form of printing, and largely unavailable due to its inefficient and time-consuming approach. In this kind of printing, pictorial engravings or etched metal plates are inked, and a single sheet of paper is rolled over them. The process only works for one sheet at a time, and is typically used for very fine, limited edition books.

As you can see, there are a variety of different printing options available to a self-publisher. While offset printing can yield deeper discounts (on a per copy basis), print-on-demand offers the flexibility of a smaller upfront investment. We offer both offset printing/bulk ordering as as well print-on-demand as options for all of our authors. That means – we’re here to save you money regardless of the printing process you choose.

So, are you ready to have 100% control over your self-publishing experience?