Frequently Asked Questions

Publishing at Pothi.com (Print)

Edit your book

If you have just finished writing your book, do a spell check for basic grammatical errors. If you need help with editing, you can opt for our Editing Services. After editing and proof-reading is complete, your manuscript is ready.

Format your book

After the actual content is ready, it needs to be designed such that it looks good when printed. You can format or typeset your book using your favorite word processor (Microsoft word, Openoffice.org etc.) or opt for a DTP software for advanced control (such as Adobe InDesign, Corel Draw, Scribus, etc.). The specifications of how to prepare your book for submission to Pothi.com are available here. If you wish to format your book yourself, our Writer's Corner provides you with tips, tricks and other help. If you wish to get your book professionally formatted, you can check out our Pothi.com Formatting Services.

Create your Cover

A book isn't ready until it has a cover. You can create your cover according to the specifications here. To create your cover for free, you can use our Cover Design Wizard. Alternatively, you can get a professional cover designed using our Cover Design Services.

Publish!

Now that you have the interior and cover files designed and ready, what are you waiting for? Submit your book here!

(Optional) Order Extended Online Distribution

Once your book is available on Pothi.com, you can place an order for our Extended Online Distribution to make it available for sale on major online stores like Flipkart and Amazon.in.

Two files need to be prepared for printing through Pothi.com. One for interior and one for cover. The specifications are available at You can prepare them yourself, or opt for our formatting and cover design services.

We do not automatically add any content to the files submitted for printing. If you want the price to be printed, you should ensure that it is already present in the cover or interior files you are submitting.

However, unless you specifically need it for distributing it yourself, printing the price on the cover or interior of the book is not recommended as you may wish to change the price at some point and then there are two problems:

  • You will have to modify the cover and interior where the price is printed.
  • Also once your book is in different points of the distribution chain, it becomes difficult to keep track of the real price if it conflicts with what has been printed.

The time taken depends on which stage your book is in. If the interior and the cover files are formatted according to our specifications, the book will typically be available for sale on our Online Store 1 business day after it has been submitted.

If you need to opt for any of our publishing services, the time taken will depend on the individual service, the manuscript size and content, etc. Take a look at the steps involved in publishing through Pothi.com to determine if your book is ready for submission.

If you have placed an order for Extended Online Distribution, the book will undergo an approval process to ensure that all specifications are line with that of our partner sites. Listings go live 7-10 business days after the book is approved for distribution.

There is a minimum MRP that you need to adhere to on Pothi.com, which depends on the physical specifications of your book (number of pages, page size, type of binding, etc.). Beyond that it is up to you to set the price of the book. The royalties you earn depend on the price you set. Please use our Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Distribution" tab) to see the minimum MRP you can set and the royalties you earn at different MRPs.
We can't. That is up to you to decide. In general, you can look around for the books of similar genre and their prices. There is a minimum price of the books on Pothi.com depending on the physical specifications of your book. The price can not be set below that. But beyond that, it is up to you to set the price. You can calculate the royalty you will earn at various price levels using Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Distribution" tab). If you think that you can command premium for the content of the book, you can price it high and earn more royalties.

Your royalties depend on the MRP you have set for your book and the physical specifications of the book. You set the MRP while publishing your book, in accordance with the minimum MRP (printing cost) applicable to your book. If the book is sold on Pothi.com, the printing cost is subtracted from the MRP and 50% of the profit goes to you as royalty. The remaining 50% goes to Pothi.com.

If the book is in distribution, and the sale happens through distribution partners, then the distribution margin also needs to subtracted from the MRP along with the printing cost. The remaining profit is divided in the ratio of 80:20, where 80% goes to you as royalty and 20% to Pothi.com.

As your book sells, the earning accrues to your account and is paid out periodically. You can estimate your royalty at different MRPs for your book using our Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Distribution" tab).

This depends on the kind of support you need. If you want a magazine priced for mass market (real cheap), then it won't be possible at POD costs. This is especially the case if you wish to print in colour. We recommend that you use our Price and Royalty Calculator to see if the cost works for you. If it does, you can go ahead and submit your magazine for publication just like a book. If you are looking for pre-publishing services for your magazine, please contact us.

By default, the books on Pothi.com are printed using print-on-demand (POD) technology. This means that copies are printed as and when an order is placed for them.

In case of orders for bulk printing, we use offset printing, which reduces the printing cost.

Books on our platform are typically printed on demand i.e. only after an order has come and has been placed for it. Hence, neither the author nor Pothi.com needs to pay for printing cost upfront. You only need to pay if you have placed an order.

If you are ordering copies for yourself, then you pay the author price and shipping cost for the copies.

If you opt for one of our premium distribution plans, then you would need to pay upfront for the printing of copies. The printing cost is reimbursed to you as and when the copies in inventory are sold, along with royalties.

One!

We use the print-on-demand (POD) model for non-bulk models, and hence there is no minimum quantity needed for printing. Books can be printed one at a time.

The printer you have spoken to is talking about offset printing. Offset printing has high setup costs. So the per copy cost is very high when it comes to smaller print runs, becomes reasonable as the number of copies go up.

When we print one copy at a time, we use a different printing technology called print-on-demand (POD). The per copy cost here is higher than what you would get if you were printing a large number of copies using offset printing. But it is more economical for when you do not wish to invest a large amount in bulk printing, and allows you to print fewer copies at a reasonable cost.

Yes. Authors can always buy their copies at the discounted author price (printing cost). We also offer bulk printing discounts. You can see the author price and bulk printing discounts applicable to your book using our Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Yourself" tab).
Authors can buy copies of their own books at the discounted Author Price (printing cost). Books can be listed on the store at any price equal to or above this, but you, as the author, will always be able to purchase your book at this price. Go to the "For yourself" tab of Price and Royalty Calculator to calculate the author price of your book.

To do so, please go to your Author Dashboard. Then click on "My Print Books (POD)". If you want to order copies of the book, in the "Pothi Links" column, click on "Store" button. Once there, click on "Buy Now" button to order copies.

If you are buying in bulk, to avail of applicable discounts, please write to us at info@pothi.com instead of ordering directly on the website. We offer free shipping on 30 copies or more via surface mode anywhere in India, and bulk printing discounts from orders of 50 copies onwards.

Yes. You can order copies at author price to be shipped anywhere.
Yes. If you want to print copies in bulk, then we seamlessly move from POD to offset printing depending on the quantity.

The time taken for production of print books depends on the quantity of books required and the production options.

For less than 20 copies of a soft cover book (perfect or saddle-stitch binding), the production time required is 3-5 business days. For 25+ copies of soft cover, it will take 5-7 business days.

For small quantities of hard cover books, 7-9 business days are required.

Bulk orders could take over two weeks.

Business days do not include Saturdays, Sundays and other Holidays.

Once the book or books are produced, shipping time must be taken into consideration separately. Shipping time depends on the location and the postal service/courier employed. Shipping delays are sometimes inevitable and beyond our control. So, if you are on a deadline, please place your order early to avoid last-minute difficulties.

If the prices of standard POD are not working for you, you can choose to print in bulk. If you want to sell and distribute the books yourself, you can pay the discounted author price and have the books shipped to you. If you want to sell and distribute through us, you can opt for one of our premium distribution plans.

Yes. If your book is not in distribution, you can do it yourself. Log in to your account, click on your username on the top right corner, then click on "Dashboard" to go to your Author Dashboard. From there go to "My Print Books (POD)" and click on "Update Metadata" for the book you want to delist. Under "Who can Buy", select "Only me". Once you save your changes, your book will be available only to you for viewing and purchase.

If your book is in distribution, please write to us at info@pothi.com with the SKU number of the book you want to delist. The process of removal from partner sites is manual and may take up to a couple of weeks. If any of our distribution partners have purchased copies of the book, they will continue to list the book until their copies are sold out. We will not supply fresh copies to them after the book has been removed from distribution.

Pothi.com reserves the right to fulfill any orders of the book pending at the time of removal.

Pothi.com supports the following standard production options.

Color

  • Black & White Interior and Colored Cover
  • Full Color

Paper for the interior

  • Plain Paper (White maplitho, 70-80 GSM)
  • Coated Paper (90-120 GSM): Not available for black and white printing.

Trim Sizes

  • 5"x7"
  • 5"x8"
  • A5 (5.83"x8.26")
  • 5.5"x8.5"
  • 6"x9"
  • 7"x9"
  • A4 (8.27"x11.69")

Binding

  • Saddle-stitched Binding (Center Stapled): For 10-64 pages
  • Perfet Binding: For 50-700 pages
  • Hard-cover Binding: For 150+ pages

Cover Lamination

  • Glossy
  • Matte

Orientation

  • Portrait
  • Landscape: Not available for books bigger than 6"x9"

Few things to note:

  • Mixing paper types or color-schemes is not possible. The entire book needs to be printed on the same kind of paper. Photoplates etc. on a different type of paper is also not feasible in our production system. If even a single interior page is colored the entire book needs to be printed in color and will be priced accordingly.
  • Hardcover books cannot go in distribution.
  • Natural shade paper is available on demand.
The interior of the book can be printed on two types of paper:
  • Plain Paper (White maplitho, 70-80 GSM)
  • Coated Paper (90-120 GSM): Not available for black and white printing.
Natural shade paper is available on request. The cover is printed on 250-300 GSM Coated Paper for soft-cover books.

Two color schemes are supported for book printing:

  • Black & White Interior and Colored Cover
  • Full Color

Mixed black and white and color printing is not possible for the interior of the manuscript. If even a single page is colored, the entire book needs to be printed in color and priced accordingly.

The cover is always printed in color.

Single color printing in non-black ink is as good as color printing with POD. It will be setup and charged accordingly.

The following standard trim sizes are available at Pothi.com.
  • 5"x7"
  • 5"x8"
  • A5 (5.83"x8.26")
  • 5.5"x8.5"
  • 6"x9"
  • 7"x9"
  • 8"x11"
  • A4 (8.27"x11.69")
Custom sizes can be enabled on request, so long as they are between 5"x7" and A4 sizes. They will be priced according to the next bigger size.
The following binding options are supported at Pothi.com. Their availability depends on the number of pages in the book.
  • Saddle-stitched Binding (Center Staples): For 10-64 pages
  • Perfect Binding: For 50-700 pages
  • Hard-cover Binding: For 150+ pages

Case 1: Your book is not in Distribution

If your book is not in distribution, you can update it anytime. To do so, please go to your Author Dashboard. Then click on "My Print Books (POD)".

If you want to update only the Price or Metadata of the book, in the "Update" column, click on "Metadata/MRP". If you (also) want to update the files or production options, then click on "Files".

If there are changes in Price or Files or Production Options, please wait until you have received an e-mail confirming the approval of changes, before you order any copies. Until this approval, the book is not updated.

Case 2: Your book is in Distribution

Production option changes are not allowed once the book is in distribution.

If there are minor updates to the book files, which do not change the number of pages or page size or other production options, then you can update it by following the steps in Case 1. Please note that for books in distribution there might be copies in inventory. The updates will reflect in copies printed only after the inventory copies are sold out.

For MRP changes, please contact us with your book's SKU number. Please make sure that the new MRP you want is feasible under your distribution plan.