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How to Format Your Book for Publishing

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. If you read the discussion below, you will find some tips on how to format your book so that it becomes ready for printing.

The first thing you need to do is to get your book into an electronic format. Open a Microsoft Word document and type your text there. 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.

You can save more, depending on the size of your book. The common size for a regular book is 5×8 inches tall. Since a hardcover overhangs the paper’s edge is a hardcover book, the finished size is 5.5×8 inches. But, both paperback and hardcover books have the same page size and setup. Page setup should be selected from the file menu and open the tab for paper size where you should 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. The margin on the top, bottom, and outside should be set at 0.5 inches. Mirror margins should be set to 0.75 inches. A readable font size is either 11 or 12 points. You can choose your own font size but if you want it to be easy to read choose Verdana or Garamond. The characters in each line, including space, should be 50 to 60. There should be about 40 lines in each page. A page will contain 250 words if these setting are followed.

IF you want to create uniform text, paragraph setting, character spacing, and other qualities to selection portions of text, then you should use document styles. Make you title 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. When you use styles, the look of your book will be consistent. 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.

Chapter titles and page numbers should be included in headers and footers. 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.

Every task involved in self-publishing is your responsibility but you can also outsource some tasks. Writers usually don’t see their own typos. Even if you are an excellent writer, you need someone to proofread your book.

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