How do you figure out what book running heads should say? Book title? Book author? Something else?
This short section from Book Design Made Simple provides some options to consider for your book.
Text to include in book running heads
In a novel, the book title usually goes on the left and the author’s name on the right. In nonfiction books, the book title usually goes on the left and the chapter title on the right. These are just guidelines, and you can put whatever you like in the running heads. Look at several books and you’ll see a variety of options.
When choosing text to include in your running heads, always consider your readers first. How will they make their way through your book? In novels, often there are no chapter titles or table of contents, so the book title and author’s name is sufficient. In nonfiction, readers navigate from the table of contents or index, so it’s helpful to see chapter titles in the running heads. In this book [Book Design Made Simple], the book title and part title are on the left and the chapter number and title are on the right. Choose running heads that will be most helpful for readers navigating your book.
Not only does this chapter of the book help you decide what to put in book running heads, it also shows you how to set them up easily in InDesign and offers several creative examples.
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