Want to print a children's picture book and don't know where to start? Unless you already have a contract with a publisher, chances are you're going to be printing the book yourself. This is called "print on demand," where you print as many copies as you need, rather than thousands at a time. Here's how to print children's books on demand, in small quantities, without needing a book publishing contract.

Step 1.

Write and illustrate the book. If you're only the writer and not the illustrator, find someone whose style you like to do the illustrations for you.

Step 2.

Select a print on demand publisher. In addition to browsing their website, call the publishing company with any questions you have.

Step 3.

Look up their formatting options. Make sure the dimensions of your book matches the size and formatting guidelines of the publisher you want to work with. Also make sure the file format is in the right format. Most companies support the .pdf format.

Step 4.

Select an exact printing style. Many print on demand printers have pre-set styles with different kinds of bindings, paper and cover materials.

Step 5.

Place your order. Generally you want to start with a small order to make sure you can sell the books and that the books are exactly the way you want them before placing a larger order.