Book production, Cost, Links, Local authors, Marketing, Self Publishing, Social Media

Need to pay for your book project? Try crowdfunding!

We’ve seen many authors and artists come through our shop who have used a crowdfunding website to fund the cost of publishing their books. What is a crowdfunding website? It’s a website that exists as a platform to help people who have an idea, but need dollars to make the idea a reality. In our line of work, that idea is a book.

Listing your project on a crowdfunding website is also a great way to test the market’s interest in your book before it’s published. It will help you start thinking about the niche your book will fill. If you can successfully generate buzz for the concept of your book on a crowdfunding platform, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to enjoy some traction with your marketing efforts once the book is published.

The most commonly-used crowdfunding website is Kickstarter. Here is a link to their handbook to get you started, and a few tips to help along the way:

  • Backing others helps you learn the ropes and get a feel for the Kickstarter community.
  • Set up your payment options in advance so you are ready to accept funds on day one.
  • Be clear on discounts and perks – and get creative!
  • Aim high when setting your dollar amount, but not so high you can’t meet your goal and cash in.
  • Tell the story of your book, and consider making a video.
  • Answer all backer questions. They are supporting your efforts!
  • Use a simple analytics tracker to learn more about your readers.

Time to get inspired! Here are a few authors we know used Kickstarter to fund their book projects, then hired us to print them.

Bard_Hey Baby


Breena Bard, a Portland, Oregon-based cartoonist and graphic novelist released “Hey Baby,” a 6.5×8.5″ softcover, in summer 2016.

Breena’s Kickstarter








Margaret Davis, another Portland-based writer and book artist, funded “China Under the Covers” this past winter.

Margaret’s Kickstarter





Adobe Photoshop PDF



Olympia-based fungi enthusiast Ellen King Rice funded her novel “The Evo Angel” in 2015 for publication in spring 2016.

Ellen’s Kickstarter





Back in 2014, Peter Donahue funded a beautiful full-color, full-size landscape hardcover book complete with custom-printed end sheets and a matte-laminated dust jacket for the first volume of his popular “Rudek and the Bear” comic collection. As one of his Kickstarter pledge prizes, Peter drew any supporter who pledged $35 or more into the style of his characters and added it as a spread in the beginning of his book.


Peter’s Kickstarter

Peter’s ongoing web comic:

Test the waters for your book project! Try crowdfunding!

About Us, Self Publishing

How Do I Get Started?

If you found this blog post, chances are you have content that wants to be a book. Gorham Printing is here to help!

When you decide you’re ready to turn your content into a book, one of your first questions probably pertains to cost. Aside from the binding style you’re interested in, we need three specifications to start talking about your price per book: the trim size you’d like the book to be, the page count of your print file, including color pages, and the quantity of books you’d like us to print.

Each book project that comes through our shop must have two separate components: a cover and an interior. If you have these two components in PDF format, you are ready to start pricing your book. If you know you need a softcover book with a standard trim size (5.5 x 8.5”, 6 x 9”, or 8.5 x 11”) printed on our house stock and a gloss laminated cover, check out our Quick Price tool for one-click pricing.

If your content is not yet print-ready, you may have questions about how to make it so. We offer instructions for file prep on our Prep Your Files page. We also offer comprehensive, individualized book design services guaranteed to meet your needs.

Unlike the Quick Price tool, our one-of-a-kind Quote Generator can price your design work in addition almost our entire range of product offerings. If you are interested in pricing a hardcover book or a book with a custom trim size or upgraded paper stock, set up an account on our website and play with our Quote Generator for accurate, to-the-penny pricing for your unique project.

When you’re ready to submit your book project, your quote becomes an order with a half-down deposit. You can make this payment with a credit card right through your account. After you make your payment, you will see a confirmation page that includes a link to our secure File Upload Tool. If you’re not quite ready to send your files, you can find this tool again under the Prep Your Files tab on our homepage.

Alison can’t wait to meet your book!

If you have questions about our prices, products, or procedures, you can call our office between 8:00 and 4:30 PST and Alison, Kamra, or Catherine will answer the phone. We are here to help you start your book printing journey!


About Us, Book production, Pre Press

Getting Ready for Print-Ready PDF Orders

The components for a majority of the books we print come from a Portable Document Format (PDF) file. While some clients choose to take advantage of our professional design services, many design their own covers and interiors and generate their own PDFs, or hire a book designer to do it for them.

The majority of the interior files we see are generated in Microsoft Word and InDesign. We also see covers designed in Photoshop or Publisher. Here are some notes on getting ready to submit your print-ready PDF files to Gorham Printing.

Our Prepress Technician, Catherine, will review your print-ready PDFs
  • You are ready to generate your print file when your editing is complete.
  • Once you’ve converted your interior native file to a PDF, check every page closely. Each page should look exactly how you want it to print. Same goes for your cover.
  • If you have one (and not all books must), make sure your ISBN appears on your copyright page, and that that page contains all information you’d like to include.
  • We are not a publisher or an imprint. We will not modify your PDF without your consent. File modification requests are subject to hourly prepress rates.
  • Review our print-ready requirements. Not all printers are the same, so even if your book was printed elsewhere you’ll want to verify that your PDFs are set to what we need
  • Familiarize yourself with our proofing procedures to avoid surprises and production delays.
  • When you’re ready to upload your files, the fastest way is with our secure File Upload Tool. This is a secure third-party server that can accommodate up to 10GB at a time. You can also mail us a CD or a flash drive.
Please note: We cannot accept files via email, dropbox, or other outside file sharing services due to security concerns, file size limitations, and possible processing delays.

We want your experience at Gorham Printing to be as pleasant and stress-free as possible. Keeping these tips in mind when you’re getting ready to submit a print-ready PDF order will help make that a reality.

About Us, Book production, Design, Page Layout, Self Publishing

Preparing Your Content for Design Services

If you are not sure how to get your content into a print-ready state, we offer both cover and interior book design services! We asked our design team for some tips on how to make sure your experience in our design department is enjoyable from start to finish.

What We Need to Begin

  • Design-Department
    Our world-class designers, Kathy & Genevieve

    Edited, word-processed manuscript in a single .doc file

  • Image files (.tif or .jpg) labeled to correspond with markers in the text indicating desired placement
  • Back cover copy, ISBN, blurbs or author photo if applicable
  • A .tif or .jpg, 300 dpi image for Assisted Cover Design orders


The majority of the books we design are text-based, mostly prose, but poetry too. Submit your manuscript in a single word-processed file, ideally Microsoft Word in most cases. Kathy or Genevieve will flow your text into Adobe InDesign and set it to the trim size on your order, bearing in mind your pre-discussed preferences and industry standards.


Many of the books we design include photographs, art, and other visual supplements. Images for design orders should supplied in their raw files (.tif or .jpg, minimum 300 dpi). We also offer professional scanning services for hard copy photographs and other documents. See our Service Rates for pricing.

Cover Design

If you have a piece of art, a photograph, or another pre-existing image for your cover, you can take advantage of our $199 Assisted Cover Design option. Kathy or Genevieve will transform your image into a book cover set to our print specifications, including a back cover and a spine with title treatment, author photo, barcode, and blurbs (all optional).

If you have a vision for your cover in mind but not the means to supply the image in a file, you can opt for our $599 Custom Cover Design. This will allow you to work one-on-one with Kathy or Genevieve to execute your concept for a professional cover design. Come to the table with your ideas and let us bring them to life!

Clean copy saves you money!

We like to remind all of our design clients to make sure they edit any text submitted to Gorham Printing multiple times, very closely before you send it. Because we are not a publishing company, we do not modify your content in any way as we sculpt it into book form.

Any editorial changes you find in your first proof are made by your designer at the standard design rate of $92 per hour. The fewer changes you find to make in the text, the lower you can keep your design costs, and your overall cost per book.