This Publishing Agreement ("Agreement") is between the Customer and Hillcrest Media Group, Inc. DBA, 322 First Avenue N, Suite 500, Minneapolis, MN 55401 (“Hillcrest”).  By paying Hillcrest for all or part of a book printing order, Customer acknowledges that Customer is bound by these terms and conditions.

These terms and conditions incorporate the General Terms and Conditions for Additional Services offered by Hillcrest Media Group.

1. Nature of Services

These Terms and Conditions constitute a contract for book printing services provided by Hillcrest and its contractors and assignees. Customer agrees to supply print-ready electronic files (as defined below), timely proof approval, and credit card, certified check, wire transfer, or PayPal payment as detailed below. Hillcrest agrees to provide timely book delivery within the provisions and standards described here.

2. Submission of Book – Print-Ready Electronic Files

Books must be submitted for printing in print-ready, PDF format, with 1/4” bleed and fully-designed and finalized covers (front, back, and spine). Print-ready files can be supplied by the Customer or by Hillcrest via Customer’s purchase of cover and/or interior design services.

Customer understands “print -ready” means that the file is:

  • High-resolution 300 DPI (Dots Per Inch) minimum
  • Certified PDF with embedded fonts
  • Deemed printable by our book printing partners after submission

Should Hillcrest or its printing partners not deem the files print ready, Customer will have the option of:

  1. Having Hillcrest provide Customer a quote for the required formatting or other work to make the file print-ready and then making said changes upon Customer payment
  2. Making the required changes using any person of Customer’s choice; or
  3. Canceling the print order after payment of all printer’s set up fees incurred by Hillcrest for the Book prior to cancellation. Customer further acknowledge that any time required to make the file print-ready will delay the printing process.

Customer acknowledges that the following files are NOT print ready:

  • Low-resolution PDFs of Customer’s formatted book provided by Customer, another publisher, a printer, or any other third-party.
  • Any other files requiring changes to reach print-ready status.

3. Printing Time Frame

Customer acknowledges that the printing timeframes below cannot be guaranteed, but are only to be used as a guide. While the timeframes for completion are fairly accurate, Customer should order books well in advance of when they are needed. Customer acknowledges that circumstances beyond Hillcrest's control, such as time of year, equipment issues, etc. may extend timelines beyond the estimates below, and that Hillcrest is not responsible for delays of this manner.

All time frames below are only valid upon receipt of print-ready files:

  • Initial Review of Submitted File – One (1) business days.
  • Delivery of Physical Proof: Seven to Ten (7-10) business days from placement of initial print order for Short Run and Offset print runs. Seven to Ten (7-10) business days from approval of submitted print-ready files for POD printing.
  • Delivery of Electronic Proof – Four to Six (4-6) business days from placement of initial print order.
  • Completion of Printing after Proof Approved by Customer:
    • Black and White Interiors Digital Printing: Seven (7) business days
    • Black and White Interiors Offset Printing: Ten to Fifteen (10-15) business days
    • Color Interiors: Twenty to Twenty Five (20-25) business days

Customer acknowledges that Hillcrest will select an appropriate printer at Hillcrest’s discretion based on the specifications of the initial order quantity indicted by Customer and other factors.

4. Proof Process

Hillcrest will furnish Customer with a physical proof and / or an electronic proof of the Customer’s book. Should Hillcrest have provided BOTH the print-ready cover and interior files on behalf of the Customer, Customer will be required to order a physical proof at the time of their print request. In all other instances, it is up to the Customer to determine at the time of the order which proof type they would like to receive.

a. Electronic Proof Definition

An electronic proof supplied by the printer is a PDF file of the interior and a PDF file of the cover with the appropriate trim marks on the cover. The color on the cover may appear to be different on the Customer’s monitor than it is in the final printed books.

b. Physical Proof Definition

A physical proof is a digitally printed physical copy of the book that the Customer will be able to hold and represent how the book will look printed.

Customer recognizes that some physical proofs contain crop marks (indicating where the cover and/or interior of Customer’s book will be trimmed during the actual print process). Customer acknowledges that it is Customer’s responsibility to review said crop marks when reviewing the physical proof, and that approval of a physical proof containing crop marks also indicates approval of where the book cover and/or interior will be trimmed.

Customer acknowledges that a proof, depending on the printer, may or may not be fully bound, printed on final materials or have cover finishes and/or lamination. If Customer’s books are being printed at a facility that does not offer bound proofs, Customer acknowledges that this is non-negotiable.

Customer’s physical proof will be sent by standard-delivery parcel post. If the Customer requests the proof to be sent by overnight mail, Hillcrest will send the proof overnight delivery for a charge of $40.00. This charge will be made at the time the physical proof is shipped.

Customer’s electronic proof will be presented to the Customer for approval via the Hillcrest Author Center. Customer will be able to download and review the proof from their Author Center account.

Upon receipt of the physical or electronic proof, Customer agrees to promptly inspect the cover proof and the interior proof for any errors on the cover or in the interior of the book, including content errors.

c. Proof Approval

Customer agrees to promptly indicate approval of proof via their Hillcrest Author Center account. Customer acknowledges that Hillcrest cannot commence with the printing of the book until such time as Customer approves the physical or electronic proof. Once the proof is approved, Customer acknowledges that production will be commenced, books will be produced as agreed via the proof, and no further changes will be accepted.

Any changes that the Customer requests to be made after the proof is approved and printing has commenced will incur an additional charge. Hillcrest will get the Customer a quote for the change and the Customer can determine whether to stop the printing process and make the changes. The job will be delayed if this occurs. Payment for the changes must be made by the Customer before the changes will be completed.

d. Proof Rejection

If proof is disapproved for any reason, Customer will have the option of having Hillcrest provide Customer a quote for the additional formatting and then making said changes upon Customer payment OR making the required changes using any person of Customer’s choice to provide new print-ready files for creation of a new proof. Upon receipt of revised print-ready files, Customer will have the choice of waiving the receipt of an additional proof, ordering a new electronic proof, or ordering a new physical proof.

Regardless of whether a new proof is requested, a charge of $100.00 per modified file will be assessed to upload the new files to the printer. If and when a new physical proof is ordered an additional $100.00 charge will be assessed for the order of each additional physical proof. Additional electronic proofs can be requested at no charge.

If after receiving the first proof, Customer requests Hillcrest make any changes to Customer’s uploaded files, Hillcrest will review the files and determine if it is able to make the corrections. If the changes can be made, Hillcrest will give the Customer a quote and if Customer agrees and makes payment, the changes will be made by Hillcrest.

If a proof is rejected by Customer, the printing process will be delayed as the printing process cannot commence until the proof has been approved. The Customer may request as many proofs as necessary and the Customer acknowledges the charges and time delays that will occur for requesting multiple proofs. After the Customer receives the new proof, the same procedure will apply as described above under Proof Process until the proof is approved.

5. Printing Standards

Should quality issues arise, Hillcrest agrees to provide best efforts to resolve the issue. However, Customer acknowledges and agrees that the following industry standards for book printing are acceptable tolerances and are not grounds for rejecting the proof or any printing of any amount of books:

  • Cover Color:
    • Per CMYK standards
  • Print Standards:
    • Ink density -- per standard S.W.O.P. printing standards [SWOP stands for “Specification Web Offset Publications.” SWOP maintains industry standard levels for printers and publishers.]
    • Folds -- signature folded square + / - 1/16” [The 1/16” folding is the allowed tolerance during the fold operation of the signature. A signature can be folded 1/16” off center and still be considered an industry acceptable product.]
  • Matte Lamination is susceptible to scratches and scuffing. If choosing matte lamination Hillcrest is not responsible for any scuffing or scratches that may occur.
  • Bind Standards:
    • Trim -- + / - 1/16” [Printer allows a margin of error of 1/16” when trimming the books]
  • Page pull -- 30 psi [The page pull is an industry standard that the printer bases the strength of their books on. They use a calibrated machine to make sure that the psi is maintained. PSI stands for “pounds per square inch.”]
  • Content Errors:
    • Any content errors, including but not limited to spelling errors, grammatical issues, spacing issues, etc. that were present in the cover and/or interior file(s) that Customer approved prior to printing are not reasons for rejecting a book order. If Customer discovers content errors in the physical proof, Customer may contact Hillcrest and request revisions to Customer’s cover/interior, the cost of which is specified in this Agreement.

Customer must notify Hillcrest if there is a quality, printing, or binding issue (“Issues”) with the books within five (5) business days of the day on which Customer receives the initial delivery of books. The “initial delivery of books”  is the date on which Customer receives one or more copies of his/her Book or when any third-party warehouse receives copies, whichever is first.  If Customer fails to notify Hillcrest within five (5) business days of any Issues, Customer accepts the books “as-is” and no other remedies are available.  Customer acknowledges that it is Customer’s responsibility to make sure that Customer receives a copy of one or more of the books printed in order to inspect them per this paragraph.  

If Customer does have an Issue and said Issue is not within “acceptable tolerances” as set forth above, Hillcrest shall have 30 days to cure the Issue, by offering at its discretion reprinting of damaged books, replacement of damaged covers, or any other such measures as it deems commercially necessary to resolve the issue.  If Customer refuses Hillcrest’s offer to fix an Issue, Customer acknowledges that no other remedies are available, including but not limited to commencing an action for breach of contract, unless and until Hillcrest has had the opportunity to fix the Issue.

6. Pricing Quotation and Payments

Hillcrest will honor quotes issued through our automated system or through email for 30 days from the date the quote was generated. Note that shipping charges are not included in the quote. Shipping charge estimates are not available until the final proof approval is received, due to variances in shipping sizes and weights which are unknown until that time. Shipping charges will be added to Customer’s final payment installment. Shipping will be via the most economical available method (normally UPS or FREIGHT) unless Customer makes other arrangements.

A. Payment Methods.

Customer may pay via certified or cashier’s check (no business or personal checks) or via credit card (MasterCard, Visa, Discover, or AMEX). If Customer pays via credit card, an additional 4.5% will be added to cover the credit card processing fees charged to Hillcrest by its credit card processing company.

B. Payment for New Print Jobs

For all initial print runs with new files (initial runs and re-prints with new files) customer shall pay via one of the methods set forth in Section 7A above as follows:

  • The first 50% of the quoted printing amount shall be paid upon placing the order.
  • The second 50% of the above quoted amount shall be paid upon approval of the proof.
  • Hillcrest, at its discretion, may require a deposit on shipping/freight charges to be billed at time of order or at time of proof approval. The “Final Charges” as noted below, will still apply for any additional charges in excess of the shipping deposit paid.
  • Payment of all “Final Charges” as defined in Section 6D

C. Payment for Re-Prints by Existing Customers

For all re-print runs (using existing files) payments will be charged to Customer’s credit card of record according to the following schedule (and or paid by check as follows):

  • 100% of the quoted printing amount will be charged at the time of Customer completing their print request and reviewing the printing quote within the Hillcrest Author Center.
  • For all POD print runs the initial payment will include the shipping charges.
  • For all other print orders, Hillcrest, at its discretion, may require a deposit on shipping/freight charges to be billed at time of order.
  • Payment of all “Final Charges” as defined in Section 6D

Customer acknowledges that no books will ship until all monies owed to Hillcrest for said print job and related items (e.g. shipping, file changes, etc.).

D. Final Charges

All print orders shall have a Final Charge associated with them and shall be paid prior to the shipment of any books. Final Charges include

  • Shipping / freight charges
  • Over / under run quantities. This final charge could also include industry-standard over/under-run quantities and associated charges of no more than ten-percent (10%). Customer agrees to accept ten percent (10%) over/under as conforming to the original quantity agreement. For example, if Customer orders 500 copies of Customer’s book, a print run may produce an extra 50 copies or be short 50 copies. Customer agrees that Customer will pay for those additional copies (10% over the initial run quantity) and Customer acknowledges that a print run up 10% less than Customer’s desired amount does not invalidate Customer’s obligations hereunder.
  • Any additional charges e.g. additional proofs, changes to any specifications originally quoted or minor design charges not already paid by Customer.

7. Shipping of Books

Customer must provide accurate shipment addresses and phone numbers and any special shipping requests or instructions prior to commencement of Customer's proof order. Hillcrest will make every effort to accommodate changes to shipment requests (e.g. change in address, quantity adjustments among several shipment destinations, etc.) after proof order is submitted, but cannot guarantee such changes can be made if Hillcrest's printing partners deem it too late in the printing process to make shipment adjustments.

Customer acknowledges that finished print orders cannot be stored at the printing facilities and accurate shipping information must be in place to ship books upon completion of production.

Hillcrest is not liable for any damage caused to books in transit, but will assist Customer in any claims against the shipping provider. Customer must notify Hillcrest if there are any books that have been damaged by shipping within 10 business days of receipt of any portion of any book order. If Customer fails to notify Hillcrest within 10 business days, Customer forfeits his or her right to make a claim.

Customer acknowledges that climate variances can cause books to warp. Customer further acknowledges that warping can be minimized by shrink wrapping and that Customer may choose to have Hillcrest shrink wrap books for shipment and that additional fees will apply. Hillcrest is not responsible for weather related damages to books, but will assist Customer in filing claims with freight delivery companies, so long as the shipment was shrink wrapped. If books are not stored in a climate controlled facility, Hillcrest is not responsible for any damages.

If Customer has not purchased distribution services through Hillcrest, Customer acknowledges that Hillcrest cannot work with Amazon or any other third-party reseller, or assist Customer in coordinating shipments to Amazon or other resellers’ fulfillment warehouses. Hillcrest can arrange for books to ship to a personal address of Customer's choosing and Customer will be responsible for coordinating his or her own inventory shipments to Amazon or other reseller. Hillcrest will not be liable for any shipment rejections or additional charges that may arise if Customer submits a shipping address for Amazon or other third-party facility. Hillcrest will not be liable for any delays or additional charges resulting errors in shipment data provided by the customer.

Customer may coordinate his or her own book shipment from the printing facility to any warehouse and/or other drop off point.

8. Hillcrest’s Warranties and Indemnities

Hillcrest warrants that the books produced will substantially conform to the description contained on the face of the quotation, and will conform to usual book printing industry standards. There are no other warranties express or implied.

9. Customer’s Warranties and Indemnities

Customer represents and warrant to Hillcrest:

  • That Customer have not assigned, pledged, or otherwise encumbered the rights to the book being printed
  • That Customer has full power to enter into this Agreement
  • That Customer is the copyright holder, the attorney-in-fact for the copyright holder, and/or otherwise has the legal authority to print books on behalf of the copyright holder
  • That the book being printed and all rights therein are free of liens, claims, or interests of any kind
  • That the book being printed is entirely original except for portions thereof which are in the public domain or for which legally effective written licenses or permissions have been secured
  • That the book being printed does not violate or infringe upon any personal or proprietary rights including without limitation privacy rights, contract rights, or publicity rights of any other persons or entities
  • That the book being printed is not libelous
  • That the book being printed does not infringe upon any statutory or common law copyright
  • That all public domain material used in the book being printed is actually in the public domain, to best of Customer’s knowledge

If any claim, action, or proceeding based upon an alleged violation of any of these warranties is made against Customer or Hillcrest by anyone, both parties will have the right to defend the same through counsel of their own choosing and no settlement by either party will be effected without the prior written consent of the other party, which consent will not unreasonably be withheld.

Further, Customer will indemnify and hold harmless Hillcrest against any damages that result due to Customer‘s violation of any warranties. This means that Customer will indemnify Hillcrest against the entire expense (including reasonable costs, disbursement, and reasonable attorney’s fees) attributable to Hillcrest’s defense or settlement of any claim, action, or proceeding based upon an alleged violation of any of these warranties, including any fees, damages or settlements that Hillcrest is required to pay to anyone due to Customer‘s breach of any warranty.

These warranties and indemnities will survive the termination of this Agreement.

10. Term and Termination

a. Term

The Agreement shall continue until either party terminates pursuant to the terms set forth herein or until the Customer’s book has been printed, shipped to and received by Customer.  The terms of this Agreement only cover book printing. Other services from Hillcrest, book distribution, design, editing, marketing programs, and otheres listed at have separate terms and conditions.

Should Customer reprint Customer’s book, Customer acknowledges that this Agreement may have changed, and that he/she must agree to the updated Agreement in order to reprint. Payment for any reprint order constitutes agreement to and acceptance of the current Agreement at the time of renewal.

b. Termination by Customer

Customer may terminate this Agreement at any time and for any reason by providing written notice via email, fax, or certified mail, provided that if such notice is transmitted to Hillcrest via email, fax or certified mail, Hillcrest acknowledges receipt thereof from Customer.

If Customer terminates prior to the commencement of the printing process Customer shall receive a full refund of all monies paid. “Commencement of the printing process” is defined as (1) Customer’s submission of files.

If Customer terminates after commencement of the printing process but before the actual printing of books has started, Customer shall receive a refund equal to fifty percent (50%) of the total cost of the print job. For example, if the total cost of a print job was $2,000.00 and Customer paid $1,000, then chose to terminate after the commencement of the printing process, Customer would not be entitled to any refund as Customer's partial payment was 50% of the total cost of the print job.  Customer acknowledges that such charges are fair and reasonable and compensate Hillcrest for its time and effort with regard to the printing process.

Once actual printing of any amount of Customer’s book has started, no refunds will be given.

All refunds will be made by Hillcrest within thirty (30) business days after the notice of termination has been provided by Customer. Hillcrest has ten (10) business days to send all intellectual property to Customer upon Customer’s request.

Termination of any other services provided by Hillcrest is set forth in the terms and conditions for those services under a separate agreement for any said service.

c. Termination by Hillcrest

Hillcrest may terminate this Agreement, the provision of any service hereunder, and printing and/or publication of Customer’s book with or without cause, for any reason and at any time, upon written notice to Customer.   In no event will Hillcrest be obligated to print and/or publish a book of any kind, including but not limited to those which, in its opinion, violate the common law or statutory copyright, the right of privacy of any person, contain libelous or obscene material,  and/or promote hate, violence, or illegal activities.   If Hillcrest terminates the Agreement, Hillcrest will immediately refund all monies paid by Customer for services not yet commenced.

Hillcrest may terminate this Agreement if Customer owes Hillcrest any monies for additional services, distribution fees, or any other service (e.g., returns, cover revision fees, interior revision fees, etc.) and has not paid Hillcrest within ten (10) business days of receiving an invoice from Hillcrest either through the mail , email or via the Author Center.

11. Miscellaneous

a. Notices

All notices required or permitted under this Agreement shall be addressed to the addresses listed below. Customer: To the address provided by the Customer. c/o Hillcrest Media Group: 322 First Ave. N. Suite 500, Minneapolis, MN 55401

b. Entire Agreement

This Agreement contains the entire agreement of the parties and there are no other promises or conditions in any other agreement whether oral or written. This Agreement supersedes any prior written or oral agreements between the parties.

c. Severability

If any provision(s) of this Agreement shall be held to be invalid or unenforceable for any reason, the remaining provisions shall continue to be valid and enforceable. If a court finds that any provision(s) of this Agreement is invalid or unenforceable, but that by limiting such provision would become valid or enforceable, then such provision shall be deemed to be written, construed, and enforced as so limited.

d. Modification

This Agreement may not be modified or amended except by written instrument signed by the undersigned parties hereto.

e. Waiver

The failure of either party to enforce any provision of this Agreement shall not be construed as a waiver or limitation of that party’s right to subsequently enforce and compel strict compliance with every provision of this Agreement.

f. Applicable Law

This Agreement and all related documents (including all exhibits attached hereto), and all matters arising out of or relating to this Agreement, are governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the State of Minnesota, United States of America, without regard to the conflict of laws provisions thereof to the extent such principles or rules would require or permit the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than those of the State of Minnesota.  Each party irrevocably and unconditionally agrees that it will not commence any action, litigation or proceeding of any kind whatsoever against any other party in any way arising from or relating to this Agreement and all contemplated transactions, including, but not limited to, contract, equity, tort, fraud and statutory claims, in any forum other than United States District Court for the District of Minnesota  or, if such court does not have subject matter jurisdiction, the courts of the State of Minnesota sitting in Hennepin County.  Each party irrevocably and unconditionally submits to the exclusive jurisdiction of such courts and agrees to bring any such action, litigation or proceeding only in United States District Court for the District of Minnesota  or, if such court does not have subject matter jurisdiction, the courts of the State of Minnesota sitting in Hennepin County.  Each party agrees that a final judgment in any such action, litigation or proceeding is conclusive and may be enforced in other jurisdictions by suit on the judgment or in any other manner provided by law.

g. Prevailing Parties

The prevailing party in any suit brought by either party hereto to enforce the terms hereof shall be entitled to recover from the non-prevailing party all of said prevailing party’s reasonable costs, distributions and attorney’s fees, including all collection cost (e.g. fees paid to a collection agency) and attorneys’ fees incurred in attempting to collect any judgment here under.

h. Assignment and Delegation

Customer may not assign any of Customer’s rights under this Agreement without the prior written consent of Hillcrest,which shall not be unreasonably withheld.  Nor may Customer delegate any of its obligations under this Agreement without the prior written consent of the Hillcrest and, in any event, no delegation shall relieve Customer of any of Customer’s obligations under this Agreement.
Hillcrest may, without the consent of the Customer, assign any of its rights or delegate any of its duties under this Agreement without any prior consent; provided that, any person or entity to whom any right, title, obligation or interest in this Agreement shall be assigned or delegated shall be subject to and bound by all of the terms and conditions herein as if they were the original party hereto.

i. Counterparts and Fax or Electronic Signature

This Agreement may be executed in one (1) or more counterparts, each of which shall be deemed to be an original but all of which together will constitute one (1) and the same instrument. Further, one or both parties may execute this Agreement via electronic signature or fax and such signature will be deemed to be original. Payment for the services set forth in this Agreement via credit card online or via fax signature constitute Customer’s acceptance to the terms set forth herein.

j. Customer Remedies & Limitation of Damages

The most Customer may ever sue Hillcrest for is the amount paid for any services rendered here under and not refunded at the time of commencement of litigation by Customer. Hillcrest is not liable for any other damages including but not limited to any incidental or consequential damages, damages for loss of profits, missed sales opportunities, business interruption, loss of business information, or any other type of pecuniary loss.

k. Currency

All dollar amounts set forth in this Agreement and in those incorporated as part of this Agreement are in U.S. Dollars.