Book typesetting and layout tips are usually about the small stuff—fixing awkward hyphenation, using special characters for symbols, and so on—but most of the questions we get are about the BIG issues. How can I balance the number of text lines on facing pages? What if the last page of my chapter only has two lines? If my chapter has to end on a right-hand page, can I leave it blank? These issues arise all the time during book typesetting. We’ll explain the best ways to resolve them. [Read more…]
You’ve published a book—or you will soon—and you know that you’ll need to get it to readers. But how? That basic question is what we’re going to clue you in on. The very concept of book distribution confounds a lot of first-time publishers, so we’re hoping to make it all clear here.
Want to design a workbook? Who uses those any more?
Lots of folks, actually. Even though there are apps for practically everything these days, children still enjoy workbooks for mazes or drawing or learning practically anything. Adults can use them for recording their latest bird find or geocaching location, or for word or number puzzles, for instance. A coloring book can be considered a workbook, too.
We’ll help you design a workbook that will work well for your audience.
Combining serif and sans serif fonts successfully can be a challenge, but it’s much easier once you know a few simple rules. It’s worth learning, as combining two fonts can really make your book design look professional. So don’t be daunted by the thousands of fonts available! The font-combining basics explained here will help to get you going quickly and easily. [Read more…]
Why, you might ask, is the coauthor of a book about InDesign reviewing a direct competitor, Affinity Publisher?
Because it’s new and I wanted to check it out.
And because it’s so much more affordable than Adobe’s Creative Cloud: $600 a year for the Adobe suite vs. a one-time total of $150 for the full line of Serif’s products: Publisher, Photo, and Designer (all at half price until May 20). We both bought the Affinity software for desktop, and I must say that for the most part, we love it.
The Affinity Publisher app is for desktop use on PCs and Macs. Photo and Designer can also now be used on iPads, so check back on Publisher to see when the iPad version becomes available.
Children’s picture books are fun to design! They’re colorful, full of images, and everything is packed into a small number of words and pages.
To design a children’s picture book, you’ll need to consider lots of factors: book size, page count, quality of images, flow of text, color, and more. Let’s take a look at those factors. [Read more…]
You can save a lot of time using InDesign keyboard shortcuts. Many users find that they work faster on their keyboard than with their mouse or trackpad. Does that sound like you? Read on to learn how to use this very handy function for applying styles in InDesign. [Read more…]
The path to a high quality self-published book is strewn with expenses. Annoying, maybe, but necessary. So, how much does it cost to self-publish? We’ve discussed most of the cost issues in the past, but here I’m pulling them all together so you won’t stumble on any surprises as you make your way.
Please don’t let anyone persuade you that you can produce a printed book that is up to publishing industry standards—and also market it—for free, because that’s simply not true.
Coffee table books. Are they a blast from the past? No, actually, folks are still publishing them, and you can, too. Do you have an idea for a coffee table book of poetry and photography? About a specific artist or a place you love? About your local history, or something completely different? With good planning and design, your book could become very successful. [Read more…]
Thinking of POD book publishing? So are we! When we published Book Design Made Simple, we got a good deal for printing both editions at Friesens in Canada. Offset printing cost us about 62% less than print on demand (POD) at Amazon. We also found a book distributor, which has housed our books and handled all of our orders ever since.
But now we’re running low on print books, and we need to decide what to do next. Should we do another offset print run, or switch to POD book publishing? [Read more…]