Standard Book Sizes: Trade Paperbacks

There are lots of different book sizes out there. One of the things that you will notice is that there are two different terms for paperback books. One of those terms is the trade paperback. Strangely enough, this is not likely the paperback size that you are used to. Most people have read more mass-market paperbacks than they have trade paperbacks. But if you have purchased a paperback book from a bookstore, or checked one out from your library, then you have read a trade paperback.

Understanding what this term means and why trade paperbacks are important to publishing is vital to being an author – whether you are self-publishing or traditionally publishing. If you want to learn more about trade paperbacks and other publishing terms, heat up some food in one of the best microwave ovens 2019 and let’s talk publishing.

What is a Trade Paperback?

Trade paperback books have specific sizes and are generally the second stage of life for books. Most books are published in hardcover – assuming you are talking about traditional publishing – and then later on they are published again in paperback in order to sell for a lower price and get widespread distribution. In addition, advance copies that are sent out for reviews are often in trade paperback format. The book is published with a limited number of these for advance reader copies, but then comes out and hardcover first.

Why is Choosing a Standard Trade Paperback Size Important?

It is important to choose a standard trade paperback size because if you do not, the industry catalogs like Ingram and Baker and Taylor will not carry your book. Ingram serves bookstores and without being in their catalog you have very little chance of getting on the shelves, while Baker and Taylor is the standard industry catalogs for libraries and schools to purchase from.

Understanding Trim Size

Another term that you might hear and publishing circles is the trim size – particularly when you get to the printing stage. The same goes for self-publishing. Some people get confused by this term, but the truth is, trim size is just referring to the dimensions of your book. Trim size and book size are exactly the same. The reason it is called the trim size is that books are trimmed all at once – and with paperback the cover is included – so that the pages have a smooth surface when the book is closed.

Trade Paperback Sizes

There are two different major trade paperback sizes; the first is135mm x 216mm. This is the most common trade paperback size, and the one that purists refer to as the actual trade paperback size. However, there is also another paperback size that publishers refer to as a trade paperback known as the B-format. The size for this, sometimes nicknamed the smaller trade paperback, is 129 mm × 198 mm (5.1 in × 7.8 in). If you self-publish, you may notice that some printers and self-publishing companies like CreateSpace have other paperback sizes that they considered to be standard. However, if you want to be safe you should just go with the two sizes that traditional publishers use. If you’re just getting started in your journey and need to learn how to write a novel, check out Squibler’s Post