What should a properly designed PDF look like?

  • This article explains what a properly laid out PDF should look like before you upload it to Blurb.
  • When creating your document:
    • Do not add any marks or color bars to your PDF files. We'll add any required marks after upload.
    • Do not set up your PDF in signatures. See the layout examples below.
  • When viewing your PDF in Reader or Acrobat use the following preferences to ensure it displays correctly:
    • View -> Page Display menu of the PDF, select Two-Up and Show Cover Page During Two-Up
    • Preferences > Page Display > de-select Use Local Fonts
    • Preferences > Page Display > set Use Overprint Preview to Always

1. Book PDF sample: separate cover and pages

This example assumes that you are uploading your book as two separate files: a cover file and a pages file. Note the following:

  • The grey area you see below is the screen background and not part of the book.
  • The cover is one single page/single sheet.
  • Page 1 of the book is on the right side, by itself.
  • Page 2 is a left-hand page.
  • Page 3 is a right-hand page.
  • Page 4 is a left-hand page, and so on.
  • Pages 2 and 3 (plus 4 and 5, 6 and 7, etc.) are page spreads or facing pages.
  • The final page in the book will be an even numbered page on the left side.

Book cover PDF

Screen_Shot_2015-09-28_at_09.54.00.png

 

Book pages PDF 

pdf_view.png

 

 

2. Book PDF sample: single file PDF

This example assumes you are uploading a single PDF containing your cover and pages.

  • For single file PDF uploads only, you should review your file with Show Cover Page turned off.

ii. A properly laid-out single file book PDF should look like this. Remember, unselect Show Cover Page in Reader.

 

 

3. Magazine PDF sample: separate cover and pages

This example assumes that you are uploading your magazine as two separate files, a cover file and a pages file. Note the following:

  • The grey area you see below is just the screen background and not part of the magazine.
  • Magazine covers have two parts, and each is a single sheet in the same PDF file:
    • Outside front and back covers (one sheet) 
    • Inside front and back (one sheet). 
  • Page 1 is on the right side, by itself.
  • Page 2 is a left-hand page.
  • Page 3 is a right-hand page.
  • Pages 2 and 3 (plus 4 and 5, 6 and 7, etc.) are page spreads or facing pages.
  • The final page in the book will be an even numbered page on the left side.

 Magazine cover PDF sample 

magazine_cover_pdf_thumbnail.png

 Magazine pages PDF 

magazine_pages_pdf.png

  

4. Magazine PDF sample, single file PDF

This example assumes you select the Cover and Pages in Single File option. Note the following:

  • The very first "page" of the single file PDF is actually the outside front cover.
  • The second "page" is the inside front cover.
  • The third PDF page is where you might normally place "Page 1" (unless you want your magazine to start on the inside front cover). This will be a right-side page.
  • The third-to-last PDF page is the last magazine page.
  • The second-to-last PDF page is the inside back cover.
  • The last PDF page is the outside back cover. 
  • If you want to see how this looks in the complete PDF you can download and review the Single_File_Magazine.pdf file below.

First pages of a single file with cover and pages:

 single_file_magazine_ss.png

 

Last pages of a single file with cover and pages:

single_file_magazine_end_ss.png

 

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