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Book Publishing Process - Formatting


Now the intense part of the book publishing process is over, we can now step into the formatting or book design process. As part of Ocean Reeve Publishing, like the editing process, we only have our publications formatted by those that have been professionally trained and are qualified in book formatting along with high skill level in the appropriate software used to design books.

Often authors decide to format their own books or decide to do it ‘on the cheap’, however, this is not the best decision and it is usually because they are not familiar with the process or the cheaper option has no knowledge of trade standards. It’s important to stay within industry trade standards when formatting the internal pages of your books. An experienced book designer focuses on everything, including the tiny details and decisions that the general author or reader may not even notice but if not attended to, would harm the general 'look and feel' of the book. Remember you want your book to reach those traditional brick-and-motor bookstores and libraries. Not having your book correctly formatted will most definitely have an impact on if that book is received positively by the buyers, or not.

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A proper book layout is the result of careful planning and attention to detail. Choosing the proper page size, font styles, line spacing, and margin settings, are a large part of a book layout, and this is often introduced at an earlier stage when the book is being assessed. Our process involves the creation of an initial preview layout for review. Once approved the full formatting process is underway to bring your manuscript to a design standard expected by your reader. This can and will include any images, photographs, graphs, and tables. Again on completion of the layout, you will check through the manuscript thoroughly and request any revisions to be addressed and this continues until you give the green light.


A well-formatted and designed book is crucial to your success as an author. Even though you worked hard on your manuscript, it may not get the attention it deserves without professional formatting. Ocean Reeve Publishing will help you provide the best possible experience for your audience by utilising our staff of professional book designers who will work with your input and create an expected layout to match the theme and message of your book. Our book designers don't use templates to design your book. Each book is custom designed by a professional book designer and managed right here in Australia, both in Brisbane and Gold Coast.

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Professionally formatted text is an important part of book design. A clear and readable typeface help create a layout that is inviting to your reader. All the front matter in your manuscript (title page, imprint page foreword, dedication, chapters, etc.) will be custom designed to create a sophisticated and professional book. We take into account page numbering and its placement, headers, and footers, chaptering layout, bleed and trim, and much more when formatting your manuscript. The size of your book is also critical and based on genre, word count and your own expectations. Below are the standard options and some guidance with book sizes


These are the traditional sizes we tend to use in the book publishing process in Australia;

  • Mass-market paperback (108mm x 180mm). This is cheap to print and aimed at the impulse buyers, mass-market sales and usually fit into niche retail outlets like airports and supermarkets. With book publishing in Australia, we tend to not commonly use this size.

  • Demy Size (139mm x 216mm). Ideal for fiction novels or non-fiction manuscripts word counts from 35,000 – 55,000 words.   

  • US Trade (152mm x 228mm). Perfect for both fiction and non-fiction, specifically for the word counts in excess of 55,000 words. Within the book publishing industry in Australia, this is a very common size.

  • Crown Quarto (189mm x 246mm). This size is quite often used in historical non-fiction books.

  • Legacy Standard (203mm x 254mm). An excellent option for children’s books, specifically hardcovers and can be in landscape or portrait.

  • Squared (180 square; 216mm square; 230mm square). Another popular option for children’s books is to design to a square size. These are two of the most popular book sizes.

  • A4 (210mm x 297mm). Very popular for educational material specifically when book publishing in Australia, New Zealand or the United Kingdom. Not common in the USA.

Book Publishing in Australia
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