What trim size should I select for my book? This question comes up all the time.
How many words does your manuscript have? Let’s assume for planning purposes that the manuscript is regular text only (no bullet points, footnotes, etc.) and each book page will have 300 words.
(This number only a rough estimate! The actual number of words will vary with the page size, margins, typeface, font size, and leading [space between lines], and depending on whether new chapters are run-in [continue on the same page] or start on the next page or the next odd page.)
The numbers below include 10 pages for front matter; new chapters are run-in.
|40,000-60,000 words||143-210 book pages|
|60,000-80,000 words||210-277 book pages|
|80,000-100,000 words||277-343 book pages|
The printed book should be proportionately thick and tall. Books of 100 pages in a 6×9 trim size look skimply and feel flimsy. Books of 500 pages in a 5×8 trim size are a little thick and could be printed more economically with a larger trim size.
Below are some rough guidelines. Follow them with care and consider your particular situation. If you’re planning a series of books, look at the expected number of pages for each one individually. If the first book will be 650 pages and the third book will be 200 pages, a midrange size of 5.5×8.5 might be best.
|40-250 pages||5×8 inches|
|200-600 pages||5.5×8.5 inches|
|300-800 pages||6×9 inches|