As the content of your book is essential, so is the layout. Working with authors over the years, we have observed common mistakes the authors tend to make when writing a book. We decided to share the top six mistakes to avoid to have your book published sooner.
Avoid adding blank pages
One of the mistakes one should avoid is adding blank pages in your manuscript. No more than two consecutive blank pages should be inserted at the beginning or in the middle of the manuscript file, and no more than ten consecutive blank pages – at the end. Before adding any blank pages to your book, we would advise considering the purpose of it. Why would you like to include blank pages in your work? Does it serve any good for your readers? Apart from the manuscript itself, all the other necessary pages containing information about copyrights, ISBN, company info, etc. will be added by your publisher.
Avoid low-resolution images
Illustrations and graphs are excellent components to include in your work. Especially if you are writing an academic book – supplementary images help to deliver a message to your readers. However, you should avoid pasting directly or enlarging images into your manuscript. It will decrease the resolution and might make your book look incomplete. Instead, try to insert pictures at their original size. Our advice is to check the resolution of the illustrations and graphics, before inserting them into your manuscript. The minimum resolution should be 300dpi. If you want to use images from the internet, always check the copyrights and resolution.
Avoid file securing
Avoid file securing before submitting your manuscript to the editor. File securing is used to keep information private. If you would like to have your book published, most likely you are interested in sharing your knowledge. The first person who will see and review your work is your editor. Your publisher will take care of your manuscript; if you secure your file, it can neither be edited nor printed. Access to the script helps to avoid unnecessary delays in the publishing process.
Avoid crop marks when creating PDF
Authors often add crop marks in the manuscript, which is something one is advised to avoid. Such distributors as Amazon might not accept your book for their catalog if your PDF contains crop marks. Usually, crop marks are used to show the printer where to trim the paper. When you give your manuscript to the publisher, he will make sure that your book passes all the technical requirements for a book to be printed. Good practice here would be to hand your manuscript over to the publisher in one 100 MB file with no crop marks.
Avoid adding the company’s logo on every page
Avoid adding the logo of your organization on every page. While your book can be the result of the work done by you and your organization, which deserves to be appropriately credited, please remember, the readers are interested in the content. To give credit to an organization, you can use the acknowledgment page where you can mention the company, express gratitude for the valuable contribution, and explain it in detail. The acknowledgment page should be one page in length, located at the beginning of your manuscript.
Avoid repetitive info in headers and footers
Please avoid adding headers and footers that contain repetitive information. Well-designed book cover will be sufficient for your readers to remember both the title and author’s name. Use headers for chapter titles and footers for pagination.
Seeing the book with the eyes of a reader will help you to understand what additional information is necessary for your book. Preparing a manuscript is a time-consuming endeavor for every author. Properly formatted documents will save time for both the author and the publisher. Before carrying out any significant formatting, please consult with your editor. Try to apply the formatting requirements proposed by your publisher and ask someone to review your work. It will help you to avoid layout mistakes, such as the ones mentioned above.