Learn To Use Your Tools

Word is an excellent tool for writing and creating the final files for self publishing, but many authors don’t take the time to learn even the basics of using this great software. I get manuscripts full of needless multiple formatting with tabs and single spaces that create problems for final formatting. On more than one occasion I’ve had to clear all the formatting so that I could begin again with clean text. One was so problematic that I copied the entire manuscript and pasted into Notepad to wipe all formatting. Then I copied and pasted it onto a new Word file. I suggest using Normal Style for writing and leave the formatting for after all the editing is complete, especially if you aren’t doing the formatting.

Step Three – Designing the Book

There are many ways to design a book and many opinions on what looks best and what’s right and wrong. I always try to keep things as simple as possible and work to make the interior of the book look good while still being easy to read.
When I published my first book I had little experience in design so I decided the best way to learn was to go to a local bookstore and study books on the shelf. I looked at many genres and learned that it was difficult to find two book alike. Design seemed to be a matter of choice and opinion. I advanced my research to finding the designs that I really liked and then I studied how I could improve them and make them mine.

One of the things I noticed and found troubling was that many books had quite narrow margins next to the spine of the book. This made the book difficult to read plus you almost had to damage the spine to read comfortably. The second thing I noticed was that some fonts were much too small. The only reason I see for the tiny font is reducing the number of pages. Within reason this may work but if the font gets too small to read comfortably it’s not a good idea.

I even saw several books where the design involved a very narrow margin at the spine but a large and generous margin at the outside edge. This may be considered an attractive design but I didn’t care for it and have never used it on any of my books.
My method is to allow adequate white space, a large enough font, and sufficient room at the spine to make the book comfortable to read.

As to fonts, there are plenty of design articles to provide information for a good choice. If in doubt I would format several pages with different fonts and then print them and select the one that seems best.

There is much more to learn about design and you might even consider hiring a book designer if you are unsure how to proceed.

Writing A Book – The Idea

I write how-to books so for me the writing is about helping others to do a specific job, perform a task, or run a business. I write about what I know and have personally experienced. As I read posts, comments, articles, and even books, I notice that individuals have questions or sometimes I just notice that information seems complex and I can simplify it with my own information. This is how the idea begins and in the next posts I’ll cover how I take those ideas and apply them to my writing.

Another New Woodworking Business Book and eBook

Woodworking Business 101: A Basic Business Guide For Woodworkers serves as an excellent beginning with the basics of the woodworking business and including all other aspects of the business of woodworking such as licenses, local and federal taxes, best ways to deal with suppliers, setting up bank accounts both checking and savings, using and accepting credit cards, the critically important aspects of contracting for work, the difficulties of accounting including unique, much easier methods, and the less than pleasant task of dealing with the IRS.

Woodworking Business 101: A Basic Business Guide For Woodworkers helps you to develop methods to get customers but more importantly it shows you the best ways to keep customers after that first job. In spite of its importance, keeping customers is often overlooked leading to a long term loss of income.

Paperback and ebook versions available on Amazon.com .

New Woodworking Book To Be Published June 1

Biscuit Joiner: A Woodworker’s How-To Guide To Biscuit Joinery is available for prepublication orders right now at: http://biscuitjoiner.woodworking-business.com/ . The book will be published and available worldwide on June 1, 2013 and sell for $19.95 plus shipping. Until then you can order your copy for only $15.95 with free shipping anywhere in the USA.

Biscuit Joiner How-To Book The newest book from Positive Imaging, LLC, written by Bill Benitez,  includes complete instructions on using Biscuit Joiners to built quality cabinets and furniture easier, faster, and more profitable.

There are photos and descriptions of many projects built using a Biscuit Joiner, drawings of all the joints that can be made easily with the Biscuit Joiner and exactly how to make all of those joints.

Biscuit Joiner: A Woodworker’s How-To Guide To Biscuit Joinery also includes four complete project plans with photo, drawings, and instructions to help you practice using the Biscuit Joiner.

The projects plans are perfect to build for family and friends. The chair and table are the perfect size for kids. I built several of them for my grandchildren.  Get complete information now at: http://biscuitjoiner.woodworking-business.com/ .

Just Published A New Detective Mystery

I have just published a first novel for Brian Meeks pictured below. (Wood box pictured not included, though it is adorable.) This novel, 200 pages, is a perfect gift for the mystery reader in your life. Here is a little detail about it.

Henry Wood is suffering greatly from a festive night of saying goodbye to 1954. His world is one of black and white, right and wrong, but his life is about to change and there will forever be shades of grey. An average detective, with a passion for the Brooklyn Dodgers, Henry is about to be hired by a beautiful woman, to find her father and his journal. It seems simple enough, but when a second woman appears, wanting his services, to find the same journal, he suspects he might be in over his head. He’s right. They are the least of his problems. The local mafia boss, Tommy ‘The Knife’, wants the journal too. As long as it is missing, he is vulnerable, and the other bosses smell blood in the water.

Who can Henry trust? Henry has a mysterious benefactor that he has never met, but seems to have his best interest at heart. Will Henry take the help that is offered? Does he have a choice?

For a limited time you can get an autographed copy at:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/78565791/henry-wood-detective-agency

Henry Wood Detective Agency
New Detective Novel by Brian Meeks

After that you can always get a copy from my eStore at:

https://www.createspace.com/3622961

Learn more about this book and Brian on his blog at http://extremelyaverage.com