Formatting Frequently Asked Questions


How much will it cost for Sarco Press to format my book?

A typical novel with 30 or so chapters will cost $45 to format to either Createspace OR Kindle, or $65 for both formats. This would also apply to any book with a novel-like layout. Most of the formatting time is spent on getting each chapter to look good, so if there are more chapters it might cost more.

If the book is a non-fiction book, or a book with graphics, lists, subheadings and/or tables, it might cost more. The best thing to do is send it to me so I can give you a fair quote.

How does payment work?

Once we agree on a job I will send a Paypal invoice. You don’t need to have a Paypal account to pay the invoice. For more information, see here: Payment

What does Sarco Press need to know from me?

First, be sure to let me know exactly what you need. Do you need:

  1. Kindle formatting?
  2. Createspace formatting?
  3. Formatting for an ebook aggregator like Smashwords or Draft2Digital?
  4. Formatting for another Print On Demand distributor? It is possible to publish a hardcover version of your book with a service like Lulu!
  5. Any other special requirements? If you’re not sure, ask!

If your book will be formatted for Createspace or another Print On Demand distributor, please include the trim size and ISBN(s).

In addition, if your book will be formatted for a Print On Demand distributor that is not Createspace, please include a link to the distributor web site so I can find and meet the requirements.

How long does it take to format a book?

Usually it takes about 7 days to format a book.

What file formats should be sent to Sarco Press for formatting?

Tust send me your working manuscript in any text format. MS Office and OpenOffice/LibreOffice are the most common types, but I have made beautiful books from plain-old Notepad files. Don’t worry, I can make it work with just about any text file. I have even had clients send me their book in Kindle format and I was able to work with that!

About PDF Format

If I extract text from a PDF file there will be a paragraph break at the end of every line! I will need to go through and remove all those extra paragraph breaks or else the book will look terrible. This takes a lot of time and adds a lot of cost to the job.

Some PDFs don’t even store the contents as text! It’s more like a picture of text.

I may be able to work with a PDF if you’re desperate, but send it to me first so I can take a look at it.

Are there any genres that Sarco Press won’t work with?

Any genre that Amazon will allow is acceptable.

What will Sarco Press deliver to me?

If you’ve ordered a Kindle formatted version of your book, I will deliver an epub file. The epub format can also be uploaded to other ebook distributors.

If you’ve ordered a print formatted version of your book, I will deliver a PDF file. PDF is the best format to use for upload to Createspace or other print distributors.

If requested, I will include my working source file at no charge. This will be either a LibreOffice otd file or an Adobe InDesign file.

My book needs a cover! What do I do?

I don’t really do cover designs from scratch–graphic arts and book design are two separate skill sets. But as part of my Createspace formatting work, I offer to format your existing cover to fit the print book as a free add-on. If you want me to format your existing cover as part of the job, send me the cover image, the book Interior type (B&W or Color), and the Paper Type (white or cream).

A good cover is what gets people interested in your book. And readers can identify a self-made cover. I recommend getting a real Cover Designer to make your book cover, and we recommend Kerry Hynds. She can be reached at , or you can visit her web site at Hynds Studio. Please let Kerry know you heard about her from Sarco Press!

Sarco Press has sent me an EPUB file for my Kindle book. Now what?

You should preview the ebook to make sure you approve of it.

Please visit this page: How To Preview a Kindle File

After you have approved it, it is time to upload the file to KDP! KDP will accept either epub or mobi format.

Sarco Press has sent me a PDF file for my print book. Now what?

You should view the PDF document in any PDF viewer. I like Foxit Reader because it takes up much less hard drive space than Adobe Acrobat Reader and Foxit doesn’t install other software that runs in the background like Adobe Acrobat Reader does.

Remember that when viewing the PDF document in 2-page view, the right hand pages will be on the left and the left hand pages will be on the right (in some viewers). The first page is always a right hand page.

Check the file to see if you like the formatting. Check the Table of Contents, page numbers, headers, and look for errors that may have been made in the formatting process. I’m human and sometimes I make mistakes!

Also consider that I do my best to put forth your own vision in the print format, and sometimes I get it wrong, usually due to a miscommunication. So please don’t think I’m trying to re-arrange your book to fit my personal view of what is acceptable.

If you don’t like the fonts or spacing I’ve used, let me know. I can change them very quickly.If you have a font you prefer to use, let me know or send it to me.

If you approve of the PDF document, it’s time to upload it to Createspace!

What if I want to edit or revise my book after Sarco Press has already formatted it?

Your book should be completely edited before you get to the formatting and publishing stage. If you need an editor or proofreader, I recommend Rachel Fogg, and she can be reached at  or you can visit her web site at Comma Down!

But sometimes errors are still found after the book is published. If there are only a few errors, contact us and let us know and we will make the changes at no charge. If there are a lot of changes a new job might be required.

Does Sarco Press format children’s books or fixed-format ebooks?

We do format children’s books and you can see some samples on the samples page. At this time we are not formatting graphic novels or fixed-format ebooks.