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Book layout tips

What should you consider when layouting your book?

  • How to make your book look professional?
  • Which font works best?
  • Is your margin sufficiently large?
  • How to set the desired page size?

These are aspects that you as a self-publisher must take into account. Let us help you:

Choose size

The page layout of your book file is the same as for your book cover. When you choose ‘paper size’ you can change your format size (in Word).

Most books (that you can find in a bookstore) will be printed on A5 or 6 x 9 inches. Of course even larger sizes such as A4, US Letter or a square of 21 x 21 cm are possible.

Choosing a font

Choose a font size of 11 or 12 points. Your text will be easier to read. We also recommend choosing a serif font typeface. A serif font typeface has small features called serifs at the end of strokes. Such serifs give the letters more diversification which makes them easy recognizable next to other letters. It enhances the readability of your text. A serif typeface also enhances the reading comfort since the serifs guide the reader over the rules of text. That’s also the reason why these types of fonts are much used in books and newspapers. The most well known serif typeface is Times New Roman (see example). Need ‘top’ quality? Then choose Garamond.

Determine margins

You best keep your top, bottom and outside margins at least 12,5mm. For the inside margins, you need to provide a little more because a part of your book will disappear in the book spine. 20mm is a good and comfortable margin for the printer to place the book in the cover.

Formatting styles

In word processor software like Word, you can make use of several styles. You can use these different styles for titles of chapters or paragraphs. The benefit of working with styles is the uniformity you create throughout your document without constantly having to set your layout choices. If you adapt one of your styles, all the text to which this style was applied will change automatically.

Header and Footer (and page numbers)

In a book a page number is crucial of course. Page numbers are mostly situated centered on the bottom of each page. You can easily insert page numbers where you find the ‘footer’.

It‘s also possible to add a chapter reference on each page. You can make use of ‘section breaks’ in the ‘page lay-out’ menu to add this in each header.

On to the next step! Choosing a cover type

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