Frequently Asked Questions

Publishing at Pothi.com (Print)

Edit your book

If you have just finished writing your book, do a spell check and check for basic grammatical errors. If you need help with that you could go for Pothi.com Editing Services. After editing and proof-reading, you manuscript is ready.

Format your book

After the actual content is ready, it needs to go in a format that looks good when printed. You can do formatting in your favorite word processor (Microsoft word, Openoffice.org etc.) or go for a DTP software for advanced control (Adobe Page Maker, Adobe In Design, Corel Draw etc.).The specifications of how to prepare your book for submission to Pothi.com are available here. Once again, you can do it yourself or go for professional help. If you are doing in yourself, a lot of help is available in Writer's Corner. If you are going for professional help, you can check out Pothi.com Formatting Services.

Create your Cover

A book is not ready until there is a cover to accompany it. You can prepare your cover according to the specifications here. A simple generic cover can be created using our Cover Design Wizard. Once again, if you need professional help Pothi.com's Cover Design Services are there.

Submit!

You have the formatted interior, you have the cover. What are you waiting for now? Submit it to Pothi.com.

(Optiona) Order Extended Online Distribution

Once your book available on Pothi.com, you can order extended online distribution to make it available 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 avail our formatting and cover design services.

We do not automatically add any content to the files submitted for printing. If you want the price printed, you should make sure that it is there on the cover or interior file you have submitted.

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.

It depends on which stage your book is in. If interior and the cover are formatted according to our specifications, once you submit the book, it will generally go online within 1 business day.

If you need any of the publishing services to prepare your book, the time taken will depend on the services taken, size and topic of the manuscript etc. Have a look at the steps involved in publishing through Pothi.com to determine if your book is ready for publishing.

If you order extended online distribution, it may take a few weeks for the book to appear on the partner sites.

There is a minimum price you need to set on Pothi.com depending on the physical properties of the book (number of pages, page size, color etc.). Beyond that it is up to you to set the Price of the book. The royalty you earn will depend on the price you set. Please use 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.

This depends on the MRP you have set for your book and the physical specifications of the book. Production cost of the book depends on the physical specifications of the book. While publishing the book on the Pothi.com, you specify the MRP. If the book is sold on Pothi.com, production cost is subtracted from the MRP and the 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 distribution margin also needs to subtracted from the MRP apart from production 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 the book sells, the earning accrues to your account and is paid out periodically. You can estimate royalty at various price levels for your book with the Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Distribution" tab).

It 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 with POD costs. Especially if you want colored magazines. In any case, you should go ahead and estimate the price using Price Estimation Tool and check out 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 want any other kind of support like services for preparing the magazine, which are very different from the book preparation services, please contact us.

By default, the books on Pothi.com are printed using print-on-demand (POD) technology. These are usually printed only after an order has come and has been paid for.

If there is a case for bulk printing, we seamlessly switch to offset printing, where the costs get better

.

Generally the books are printed on demand i.e. only after an order has come and has been paid for. 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 the premium distribution plans, they you pay for the printing of copies initially, which is reimbursed with the royalty as the copies sell.

One!

Pothi.com uses print-on-demand (POD) 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. Hence, if you print small number of copies, the per copy cost is very high. But becomes reasonable as the number of copies goes 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 printed large number of copies with offset printing. But it is still much more reasonable. While printing one copy is infeasible with offset printing, with print on demand it is within the range of feasibility.

Yes. Authors can always buy their copies at author price. This is the price with zero author margin and minimum margin for Pothi.com. So, even when the book is listed on the store at a higher price, authors can get the copies at this special price. There are further discounts for bulk purchases. Price and Royalty Calculator ("For Yourself" tab) will let you calculate the author price for your book.
Authors can buy copies of their own books at a special price called the author price. This is the price with zero author margin and minimum margin for Pothi.com. 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.
Make sure you are logged in to your account before adding the book to the cart. The book will automatically get added at the author price. If you are buying in bulk, to avail the discount, please write to us at info@pothi.com instead of ordering directly on the website.
Yes. You can order the books 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 postal service/courier employed. Shipping delays are sometimes inevitable and beyond our control. So, if you are on a deadline, please order the copies early to avoid last-minute issues.

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 us to sell and distribute through us, you can opt for one of the premium plans of our distribution services.

Yes. If you 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 should see this book", select "Only me". Once you save the book, your book is no longer available for public.

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 need upto a couple of weeks. If any distribution partners have purchased the copies, they will continue to list those until sodl out. We will not supply any fresh copies to them after removal.

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

Pothi.com supports following standard production options.

Color

  • Black & White Interior and Colored Cover
  • Full Color

Paper for 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-stiched Binding (Center Staples): For 10-64 pages
  • Perfet Binding: For 60-600 pages
  • Hard-cover Binding: For 150+ pages

Cover Lamination

  • Glossy
  • Matte

Orientation

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

Few things to note:

  • Mixing paper types or color-scheme is not possible. The entire book needs to be printed on the same kind of paper. Photoplates etc. on a different paper is 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.
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. 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 interiors. If even a single page is colored, the entire book needs to be printed in color and priced accordingly.

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.

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.
Following binding options are supported at Pothi.com. Their availability depends on the number of pages in the book.
  • Saddle-stiched Binding (Center Staples): For 10-64 pages
  • Perfet Binding: For 60-600 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 in 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. Hence, the update might take time to reflect in the copies shipped to the buyers.

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.