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The Choir Press Blog


15

Self Publishing - Preparing Your Typescript

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When preparing to self publish your book a little bit of planning ahead can save you a great deal of time and help eliminate errors. When you send a typescript to us it’s helpful if you submit it as a single file. If you can’t do this separate chapters are acceptable but be sure to number them in the correct sequence. The pages should also be numbered consecutively and double line spaced. If the finished book will have a contents page you should draft this although there is no need to insert the page numbers into the contents page as these will change by the time your book is typeset ready for printing. There is no need to send a printed version to us in the post.

Bear in mind that a typescript is not a print ready file and we will need to convert your typescript so that the pages will look professionally composed in the printed edition. If you are supplying a file that is already edited we will be using the layout in your file as a guide for design and layout. For example, different levels of heading should be clear to a reader. Your book may have chapter headings and several hierarchical levels of heading within the text. It is very important that these different levels of heading are apparent from the size and weight of font you use. Chapter headings will be pretty obvious but if you have 3 levels of heading within your text and the typographical styles are not distinct for each level this will cause confusion and there is a strong likelihood that errors will occur in the finished work.

Similarly other typographical features that distinguish content should be clear. If you use a particular font and size for quoted extracts you should use a different style for other features such as case studies or examples. Remember that the objective here is to clearly indicate the different classes of content through use of font and layout style even though these styles are unlikely to be the ones in the finished book. We will apply styles that are consistent with current publishing conventions and good practice.

If your typescript includes images, the image files should be numbered using a three digit reference so that if the first image is called London-bridge.jpg you should name it 001-London-bridge.jpg and if the 20th image is called The-Tower-of-London.jpg it would become 020-The-Tower-of-London.jpg. File names should not be longer than 40 characters including spaces. The image files may be embedded in the typescript to indicate where they appear but it is equally acceptable (and will keep the file much smaller and is therefore arguably preferable) if you simply indicate between the relevant paragraphs that “image number xxx goes here”. Please provide a separate caption list in numerical order. Note that the images do not have to be inserted in the manuscript in numerical order. This is because if an author discovers an important image they want to use in chapter 1 after they have finished their typescript, they would have to go through and renumber every image in the typescript, caption list and filename which would be incredibly tedious! As long as we can identify your preferred location of each image in the script and which image file and caption it relates to, the numerical order doesn’t matter.

We often experience difficulties extracting images from Word files or we find that images have been scaled or resized in a way that makes them unsuitable for high quality reproduction. So even if you embed the images in your typescript we still require the image files to be supplied as separate files to import into our typesetting software.

If you are supplying print ready PDF files this article does not apply to you.

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