A Book Production Glossary


hoe pressEvery craft and profession has its own specialised vocabulary, and the printing trade is no exception. Indeed, with a history going back several centuries, the jargon of book-production is often obscure and antique. Knowing how to' talk the talk' is vital for an author. This guide will help to explain many common terms and phrases.


(copied from http://www.printusa.com/printing_glossary.htm)


Accordion fold: Bindery term, two or more parallel folds which open like an accordion. 

Against the grain: At right angles to direction of paper grain. 

Alteration: Change in copy of specifications after production has begun. 

Artboard: Alternate term for mechanical art. 

Author's corrections: Also know as "AC's". Changed and additions in copy after it has been typeset. 

Back up: Printing the second side of a sheet already printed on one side. 

Banding: Method of packaging printed pieces of paper using rubber or paper bands. 

Basis weight: Weight in pounds of a ream of paper cut to the basic size for its grade. 

Bind: To fasten sheets or signatures with wire, thread, glue. or by other means. 

Bindery: The finishing department of a print shop or firm specializing in finishing printed products. 

Blanket: The thick rubber mat on a printing press that transfers ink from the plate to paper. 

Bleed: Printing that goes to the edge of the sheet after trimming. 

Blind embossing: An image pressed into a sheet without ink or foil. 

Blueline: A blue photographic proof used to check position of all image elements. 

Board: Alternate term for mechanical. 

Bond & carbon: Business form with paper and carbon paper. 

Bond paper: Strong durable paper grade used for letterheads and business forms. 

Break for color: Also known as a color break. To separate mechanically or by software the parts to be printed in different colors. 

Brightness: The brilliance or reflectance of paper. 


You may also care to consult these sources:


  • Book 1
  • Book 2
  • Website 1 link
  • Website 2 link