Frequently Asked Questions

Printing Your Book

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Find out more about our Print-on-Demand publishing style and our ability to make your book available on all digital readers.

Offset Printing

Yes. To benefit financially from your offset investment, we suggest that you plan to print a minimum of 1,500 units. Please contact your Book Consultant for more information.

  • More design and print flexibility. You’ll have more options than what is supported through POD printing, such as the following:
    • The ability to print at a higher resolution, meaning sharper and cleaner book covers and interior type than POD because of the printing tools used.
    • Additional cover and paper stock options, such as gloss- or matte-coated paper stock.
    • Additional trim size and design options (example: embossed text on the front cover).
  • Lower author price. Each book costs less for the author to print when compared to POD. The cost to print each offset is individually quoted depending on volume and the book’s specs.

The cost of offset printing is quoted on a case-by-case basis, depending on your book’s format and the volume you wish to print. Please contact your Book Consultant for more information.

Offset publishing is certainly not for all authors, as most are satisfied with the POD advantages. Offset publishing requires a large upfront investment that authors may not wish to spend, and it does not guarantee that bookstores will pick up your book.

Offset printing is a method of mass-production printing in which digital book files are converted into digital negatives that are used to etch the pages of a book into custom metal plates. After ink is added to the plates, large rollers pick up the ink from the plates and then transfer it to paper. Offset printing is commonly used in traditional publishing, allowing authors to print their books in bulk. Typically we use Print-On-Demand (POD) fulfillment, where books are printed one at a time after each book order is placed.

There are several reasons why some of our authors choose offset printing. If you’re considering offset printing, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have special print requirements—such as unique formats, paper options, binding or cover treatments—that are not supported or available through POD?
  • Do you have a large reach and ability to process a large number of orders? Do you want the opportunity to sell a large number of books directly to customers?
  • Do you want to lower your print cost to maximize your return on books you sell?

If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, offset printing might be right for you. Call your Book Consultant to discuss your options.

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Printer & Publishing Style

Balboa Press is a non-traditional, self-publisher. Here are some benefits of publishing with Balboa Press over a traditional publisher:

  • You remain in complete control of the finished product because you get to decide what text, images, illustrations, fonts, etc. to use in your book.
  • You also retain the rights of your manuscript, unlike a traditional publisher.
  • The timeline from start to finish is much quicker than a traditional publisher, which often takes two or more years to complete.
  • You do not need an agent in order to get your manuscript noticed, accepted and published.
  • Unlike traditional publishers who only market their most promising titles, we offer marketing materials and promotional services you can choose to purchase at your leisure.

Print-on-Demand publishing, or POD, is a method of book printing using digital technology that makes it easy and cost-effective to produce books as they are ordered, either one at a time or in large numbers. Instead of a more traditional mode of printing, which only prints a large number at one time, POD is an "as needed" printer so there are no wasted books and no need to store them. This also means that the book can be available for an extended period of time, instead of the book being "out of print" after one print run.

Our partners, such as Sony, require ePub files. This is why digital formatting and distribution is now included in all of our Black & White and Color publishing packages.

Yes. All changes and corrections implemented on the manuscript, in terms of content, are also implemented on the e-book version. Any non-textual changes are subject to technical limitations and may or may not be cascaded to the e-book version.  

Yes. As of Oct. 20, 2011, color books can be formatted as e-books.

There is a high possibility of this happening. We will strive to keep as much of the original formatting as possible; however, because of the dynamic nature of the e-reader devices, the formatting and fonts in your printed book may be adjusted in the e-book version. Please note that there will be no changes whatsoever to your e-book's content.

In order for us to make your color e-book compatible with most e-reading devices and ensure wider distribution, our team of developers will adjust the file format. In some cases, we may separate text from images. These changes enable readers to enjoy your color e-book regardless of the varying e-reader functionalities, ensuring a better reading experience. Nonetheless, everything will be done to retain as much of the original formatting as possible.

Yes. The e-book will have the same ISBN, regardless of the channel of the format it is sold in.

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Digital Readers

E-book readers are wireless handheld devices capable of downloading an electronic version of a book and making it available for a customer to read anywhere without a physical copy of the book. Formatting physical books into e-books gives you as the author another avenue to connect with readers and give them the book they want in the format they want. Companies like Barnes & Noble, Amazon and Apple have the largest e-book stores in the nation giving readers access to hundreds of thousands of books. Read more FAQ below to learn more details about each.

For Barnes & Noble, the e-books can be loaned to friends for a specific period of time. The purchaser, however, cannot make copies or print the book.

The Amazon Kindle is the most popular handheld eReader device on the market. With access to 420,000 titles from over 100 countries around the globe, and growing, it provides the reader with unlimited choices of literature, at their fingertips, almost anywhere. As a Kindle user, you have access to top magazines and newspapers, as well as audio books. And with the Kindle for PC and Kindle for iPhone apps, you can read Kindle books even if you don’t have your Kindle with you.

Google launched an e-book store called Google Play Books, which allows the purchase of thousands of titles through any Web-enabled computer, e-reader, or mobile phone instead of a dedicated device.

A leading global eReading service for smartphones, laptops, eReaders and any other device used for reading digital content, Kobo provides access of your book’s content (book block and cover) to book enthusiasts from more than 200 countries. Once your book has been digitally formatted, it will be made available for sale on the Kobo Web site. It can then be downloaded to a digital device that allows the buyer to adjust the font size and more for readability.

The Barnes & Noble eReader is an application used to read Barnes & Noble eBooks on your iPhone, Blackberry, Windows PC or Mac. Without it, you will not be able to read Barnes & Noble e-books. Barnes & Noble e-books are encrypted to protect the authors’ work. Thus, other e-book Readers will not work with Barnes & Noble e-books.

The Barnes & Noble eReader can display styled text (italicized, underlined, etc.) and formatting as well as perform functions not found on other e-book readers. The Barnes & Noble eReader is free to download and is supported on multiple devices.

The nook is Barnes & Noble's digital e-reader (like the Sony Reader) with access to more than 1 million titles.

The Sony Reader is another handheld device capable of downloading an author’s e-books.

The Apple iBooks Store is an e-book store created by Apple. Books can be downloaded to an iPad, iPhone and iPod touch via the iBooks Store.

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E-book Distribution

Different e-readers use different types of files. Amazon’s Kindle series of e-readers use the PDF format, while many other readers use the ePub file format. This allows for your book to be distributed to and read on a variety of e-readers and tablets (iPad, Google Nexus, etc.). There is little actual difference between the two versions of your e-book but we offer your e-book in the format the vendor requests it in, per the guidelines from that vendor, to cater to as many e-readers as possible.

We work with multiple partners for e-book distribution, and each partner maintains a very dynamic list within its network.  

While we submit your e-book to as many channels possible, please understand that each channel or retailer reserves the right to refuse listing. 

Currently our e-book publishing is compatible with the following devices:

  • Amazon Kindle (a wireless reader)
  • Barnes & Noble eReader (an application for iPhone, Blackberry, Windows PC or Mac)
  • The nook (a wireless reader)
  • Google Play Books (customers can buy books through their Google accounts and access them on just about any device with a modern Web browser)
  • iBooks Store* (Apple's online bookstore available for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch)
  • Kobo Books

*All retailers reserve the right to accept or deny content for availability on their e-book stores.

* To meet submission standards, please review your manuscript thoroughly to ensure spelling accuracy and correct rendering of any diacritical mark such as tilde, caret, acute accent, or the like. 

We will set the default price of all e-books at our discretion. However, vendors may choose to sell the e-books at a higher or lower price than what we set.

You will receive 50 percent of the net payments received from sales of your e-book. Royalties will not be paid on copies provided free of charge or sold to the author. You will always receive 50 percent of the net sale when sold. (For example, if your e-book is sold on Balboa at $3.99, you will receive $2.00. If it is sold in the retail channel at $3.99, the channel discount, which varies by partner, will be deducted from the sale price, and you will receive 50 percent of what is leftover.)

It will take approximately four weeks after your book is printed for your e-book to appear on retail websites.

No. Balboa Press e-books will be distributed to as many vendors as possible within our network, including future partnerships that we and our partners acquire. It is then at the vendors discretion whether or not they list the e-book titles we submit to them.

Currently, your e-book sales will be paid quarterly in conjunction with print book sales. However, the online statement currently will not reflect these sales. We are working on adding these items to the monthly statement.

Balboa Press' partnership with Kindle is a great opportunity for our authors to offer their digital content through the most popular e-reader device in the industry.

Having your book added to the Barnes & Noble eBook store gives the public access to your books through various forms of digital media such as, the nook, PC, and Mac (by downloading the free Barnes & Noble Reader).  Barnes & Noble is one of the largest retailers in the country, and having access to their e-store expands distribution opportunities for our author’s books.

It can take up to three months for your book to appear in the iBooks Store. If your book is still not available after that period of time, it is possible that Apple did not accept your content. Reasons that Apple may choose to deny content include typos, poor editing, poor formatting and subject matter.

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