If you have been searching for children’s book advice and information in Canada, then you’ve come to the right place!
Creating or publishing a children’s book in Canada is a dream for many Canadian authors, and who could blame them? Children’s books are fun, silly, and extremely exciting to create. Regardless of whether you sell a million copies or one, creating and publishing a children’s book can be a rewarding experience, and let’s be honest, we could all use a distraction given the current pandemic affections people across Canada.
Here at Indie Publishing Group, we’ve seen a huge increase in people self-publishing children’s books, and it’s not just children’s book authors that are stepping up their game. We’ve also seen a lot of first-time authors enter the children’s book self-publishing world.
It can be an eye-opening experience to create your own children’s book. What you think you know and what you need to know are often quite different. It’s one of the reasons that we created our Children’s Book Packages.
Self-publishing a children’s book is a completely different experience from a regular fiction book. There are quite a few different steps which need to be followed, in the right order, if you want to avoid expensive changes and delays. In the following article, we’ll cover some of the different steps you need to follow to ensure that your children’s book goes smoothly.
Children’s Book Publishing Tips Canada
The first part of the process is creating your story and deciding whether you want to create a children’s picture book or an early chapter reader. Chapter books are easier to organize as you have a lot more room for illustrations and the text placement isn’t an issue.
When you are writing a children’s picture book, you need to decide how much text you’re going to have per page and how many pages you’re going to have. Most children’s books are approximately 24 pages, and then you go up in increments of 4 pages. Every piece of text needs to fit on a page, regardless of whether it’s beside the illustration or on top of it. When you write your story, please pay close attention to how you plan on illustrating it.
- Bonus Tip – Create your book description at the same time and get it edited with the rest of your story. It’ll save you time later on!
Editing Your Story
Most children’s books are between 1000-1500 words of text. Getting it edited isn’t going to be a huge expense, so don’t cut any corners here. Space for text is usually at a premium, so cutting out even a few unnecessary words is going to give you more room for illustrations.
- Bonus Tip – Great editors are hard to find, so if you find one do everything you can to make their life as easy as possible.
This is the part of the process where it gets fun! There are a few things that your illustrator will need to know if you want to avoid any mistakes or corrections later. Let them know the trim size of the book so that they can create illustrations to fit the correct size. It’s vital to check where you plan on publishing! Some platforms have specific children’s book sizes available, and they aren’t all the same.
Share with them the rough layout of the book with text on the page so that they can where they should leave blank or neutral space if your text is going on top of illustrations.
You’ll also need to choose whether you are getting full-page spreads, half-page illustrations, or a combination of both. Full-page spreads cover both pages when you have your book open, half pages only one. The benefit of half-page illustrations is that you have a blank page where you can put large amounts of text.
- Bonus Tip – Don’t forget your cover! Your illustrator can use an image from the story for the cover, or you can get one created specifically for the cover. Allow room for the title and author name.
Formatting & Layout
Your formatter or designer is where all the parts come together. Working with your designer throughout the process can make this stage much easier. The last thing you want to do is get to this stage and realize that your text won’t fit or your illustrations are the wrong size for your chosen trim size.
Your designer lays out all the text and illustrations together and puts them into your chosen file format for eBooks or Print books. You have many options with fonts, sizes, and layout of text if you’ve done everything correctly and worked with your designer and illustrator. If not, you’ll be trying to squeeze text into places it shouldn’t be squeezed into, leaving you with a crowded mess.
- Bonus Tip – Communicating with your entire team throughout the process will make the whole project faster, easier, and more affordable.
Uploading & Publishing
Now it’s time to upload your files to your chosen platform. Different platforms require different file types, so make sure you do a little bit of homework or speak to your formatting and layout specialist about where you intend to self-publish.
- Bonus Tip – You should always get your own ISBN. This means you’ll always retain the rights to publish your book rather than relying on websites such as Amazon to provide you with an ASIN. If you have your title firmly set in your mind, then get started on the ISBN as soon as possible to avoid delaying your book production.
Children’s Book Publishing Tips Canada – Conclusion
One of the most difficult parts of self-publishing a children’s book or creating a children’s book is just getting the steps finished in the right order. If you do things out of order, then you’re going to find yourself either having to redo certain parts or chop and cut different things together.
While it’s not the end of the world, it can make the entire process slower, more expensive, and more difficult when it comes time to put that book together. If you have any questions about self-publishing a children’s book in Canada or would like to try out one of our Children’s Book Packages, then don’t hesitate to contact us directly.
As experienced self-published children’s book authors ourselves, we understand that it can be a difficult and frustrating process. That’s why we’re here to help—Canadian authors helping Canadian authors fulfill their dreams.