Tips for Formatting Your Book
There are many people who want to write a book but don’t know where to start. Compared to learning to play a musical instrument, writing a book also needs to start slow and taken a step at a time. But here are some tips that will help you get your rough draft book ready for printing.
Getting your book into an electronic format is very important. It is easy to type your book text in a Microsoft Word document. Most printers prefer that your book be sent as a portable document file or PDF by using some layout programs. Using styles in Word can give you an unstable document if it is opened in a different version of the program. But when it comes to typesetting, editing, and formatting, Word does a great job.
When it comes to cost savings, size really matters. The average book size is 5×8 inches tall. For a hardcover book, the finished size is 5.5×8 inches because the cover overhangs the paper’s edge. But, both paperback and hardcover books have the same page size and setup. In order to set your page dimensions you should select from the file menu the tab for paper size where you type in your page dimensions. You should have a proper set up of the margins so that printing will be correct and there will be enough room for binding. A half inch on the top, bottom, and outside is ideal. There should be 0.75 inches in mirror margins. Choose 11 or 12 points for your font size. If you want an easy to read font, use Verdana or Garamond. The characters in each line, including space, should be 50 to 60. There should be about 40 lines in each page. If this is followed, then there will be 250 words in one page.
The use of styles will help your document have uniform text, paragraph settings, character spacing, and other qualities to selection text portions. The title can be in one font size and bold style. The chapter headings in a smaller font like Times New Roman, and the body can be in Verdana or whatever font you like best. There will be a consistent look for your book if you use styles. Another advantage is when you change an attribute of the text in the paragraph, everything with that style will automatically update throughout the entire book.
For your headers and footers, include chapter titles and page numbers. This can be done by opening the header and footer tab from the view tab of the word toolbar. Then you can start typing whatever you need for your header and footer.
You should do everything if you are self-publishing but you can also outsource some tasks. You still need someone to proofread and edit your book since most writers cannot see their own typos.