Book Design: BuJo for Writers No. 4

Book Design: BuJo for Writers No. 4

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Styling a book gives me tons of pleasure. It’s a form of design that I never explored before. When I published the first edition of TIDES, I was happy with the result, but as I learned more, I realized that it could be done better. I found great pages online with tutorials on how to layout a book and now I feel proud at how the second edition looks.

I use my BuJo to keep track of the decisions I make on which fonts, sizes and alignment I use on my chapters. I add them to the Styles menu in Word to automate the process, but have it all in one overview. The cover measurements come in handy to remember how wide the spine needs to be.

I also write down the publishing date, ISBN number, how many pages the book has, the BISAC category and I make a list the tags I will use often.

A cost overview is also a very handy thing. Not only you can see how much it costs you to buy copies for yourself, but which price you set and how much royalty your book earns according to the market.

Another thing is that I make notes of the lessons learned:

Interior:

  • I will need three files, two for the final (DOCX and PDF) and one for the naked final (DOC)
  • OTF fonts don’t embed in Word, if your book has them, you need to make a PDF of it
  • Clipart inside the book needs to be 300 DPI
  • Make sure to select the whole text and make it black

Cover:

  • Transparencies get flattened or lost
  • Make all colors CMYK
  • Leave space at the back for the bar code

As I take on new projects, new notes will be added to my BuJo. What have you learned during your own publishing process?

This was the final entry of my Bullet Journaling for Writers, customize it to your own needs and success!

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Characters: BuJo for Writers No.1

Characters: BuJo for Writers No.1

Nothing embarrasses me more as a writer than when a reader says: Sean? Wasn’t he called Shawn before?

My books have tons of characters with descriptions, occupations, and traits. When it comes to secondary and tertiary characters, I have a lot more. No wonder Shawn became Sean a few chapters further.

Recently, I learned about bullet journals and was simply impressed by the idea of having my agenda, checklists, planners and trackers in one condensed and convenient system. Then I thought, if this works for organizing my life, it sure works to organize the details of my books.

20171113_100005So I made a page for the characters from TIDES. I have seen very detailed spreadsheets online to make a whole profile of a character, but that wasn’t what I needed. I wanted an overview of the people with the details that I tend to forget (was Sean blond or did he have black hair? Wait, he’s called Shawn!).

So I called my system the HEA-ORT in which I record the:
(H)air color  /  (E)ye color  /  (A)ge
(O)ccupation
(R)omantic Relationship
(T)raits

For my secondary characters I kept it even more condensed, using only HEA-O. Then on the side, I made a list of every tertiary character without details.

It has helped my memory inmensely and will help you too. What do you think of this idea? What would you do differently?

In my next entry, we will talk about other book details worth recording.