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HI, my name is RIchard Hicks. I do not know when I officially joined or what postings I wrote in the beginning. I'm embarking on writing my first book. I found some really great publishing sites but I have not put my writing into Microsoft Word. I am rewriting posts from my blog into MW. I was wondering how to go about doing that. I have used MW but not used it for writing a book.

 

God Bless,

Richard

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Hello, Richard! I moved your thread here where it's a better fit and will get better responses. I hope you'll hop back over to Meet and Greet and re-introduce yourself. :)

 

I think more people use Word than any other source. First, I would copy and paste your work into Word. However, you may want to save each post as a doc and give it the title as on your site. You should always have a copy of your work.

 

Then, I would outline what you want in your book, using the titles in the order of the outline. You could then copy and paste each blogpost into your manuscript. Organizing first would be a big help, saving you time and frustration.

 

Hope this helps. :)

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Thanks Lynn, I am thinking self publishing, so I am wondering if I need to go with a certain size and margin sizings. So far I have found self publishing is the cheaper route, I am not worried about sales at this point. Just getting some books in print that I can get my story out there for ministry purposes.

 

Thanks,

 

RIchard

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Formatting Word is essential or you will have problems when you use Kindle or CreateSpace, if that is what you thinking of doing. I'm not good at that part so someone else will have to help you on that. You can google submission guidelines and that will help you with sizes, etc.

 

Be sure you have your work professionally edited and have the best cover done that you can afford, if you're not a whiz at photo editing. Also, you have to be sure your font and cover image are free to use commercially.

 

Hope this helps a little. :)

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I actually will not be using CreateSpace, and haven't thought about Kindle. I may use selfpublishing.com or ingramspark.com.

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The 'trim size' of your book depends on what trim sizes are offered by whichever company will print your book. There are a few standard trim sizes and some distributors only distribute books if they are in one of a handful of standard trim sizes.

 

There are also practical considerations.

 

For example, if you're writing a 500,000 word book, the font, font size, and trim size of the book will determine how many pages long your book will be. If you're writing a book with a low word count, you may want to use a small trim size. If you're writing a book with a high word count, you may want to use a larger trim size if you you think your book will be too thick if you use a smaller trim size.

 

You should also take cost into account. Some printers' websites have a cost calculator that you can use to determine the printing cost per page based on trim size and page count. Lower cost is often better than a higher cost, unless you have a reason to use a specific trim size.

 

A printer (or the printer's website) should also give you specifications regarding 'margin,' 'bleed,' and 'gutter' sizes (and should indicate whether those measurements are in inches or centimeters).

 

That's another point to consider - Which countries do you want your book to be distributed in, do you want your book to be distributed in bookstores, and what requirements does the distributor and/or printer have for a book in that regard?

 

After you've determined those things, which will affect how the text in your book is laid out on the pages, and after you have fully edited your book... then add page numbers to your book's Table of Contents. If you add page numbers to your book's Table of Contents before your book is ready to be published, you may find yourself having to change the page numbers in the Table of Contents.

 

There's also the book's cover.

 

Most printers expect you to send them two files: a PDF file containing your book's pages, and a PDF file containing your book's cover file.

 

When printing an image, two things to take into consideration are height and width dimensions in pixels, and DPI (or PPI, whichever your book's printer uses).

 

Height and width in pixels is the measurement of how high and wide an image is when it's displayed on a computer. The height and width of a computer screen's display area can be measured in pixels.

 

DPI (dots per inch) is a measurement of how many dots will be printed side-by-side in one inch when an image is printed. A standard 1:1 ratio between an image's size on a computer screen and that image's size when it's printed is: 100 DPI = 1 inch.

 

So if you set an image's width to 600 DPI and its height to 600 DPI, it means that the height and width of that image will be 6 times shorter when it is printed compared to how high and wide that image looks on a computer screen.

 

It's important to know that because commercial printers tend to print dots more closely together than home printers do. That's why commercially printed images that have a lot of detail in them tend to have higher image quality compared to what can be printed with a home printer.

 

Most printers will want 600 DPI or 1200 DPI book covers. You should find out from your book's printer what DPI your book's cover should be.

 

When you print a book, you need a back cover and a front cover. Depending on how thick your book is, you may also need a spine image.

 

Whether or not you put text on a spine image may be determined by how thick the spine will be. Your printer can give you more information about the minimum spine width to print text on the spine and how big the text area in which you can put text would be. Of course, spine width depends on how thick your book is, so you may want to finalize the formatting of the inside of your book before you finalize your book's cover.

 

Your printer and/or distributor can probably tell you exactly where your ISBN or Barcode should be (usually on the bottom of the back cover).

 

A book printer will most likely want you to send a cover image that has your front cover, back cover, and spine put together as one image. That combined image should probably have a 0.25 inch 'bleed' around its outer edges, but find out the exact bleed dimensions from your book's printer.

 

Microsoft Word allows you to save files as PDF files, so that may be good for the interior pages in your book... unless you want to put high-resolution images in your book.

 

When Microsoft Word saves a Word document as a PDF file, there is a maximum image resolution and maximum file size that Microsoft Word saves to PDF (even if you use the 'high quality' setting when saving a Word document as a PDF). There are apparently one or two ways to force Microsoft Word to save PDFs in their true highest quality, but both those solutions are technical (one of the solutions involves editing the Windows Registry).

 

If you want to have high-resolution images in your book, you should save it as a PDF using something other than Microsoft Word. If you want to save your book's cover image as a PDF, you should use something other than Microsoft Word.

 

There are also rules and conventions regarding the internal layout in a book, such as all chapters starting on a right-hand-side page.

 

Oh, that can take some getting used to when you're working on a book. Unless you're going to print something in the inside front cover, the first page in your Microsoft Word document will be a right-hand-side page.

 

When I formatted my book, I used absolute numbering, not Roman numerals. So page 1, and every odd-numbered page in my book, was a right-hand-side page.

 

It's also important to know that when setting the gutter margins. The 'gutter margin' is the margin that becomes part of the book's spine, so it's different on left-side and right-side pages because the spine is on the right side of a 'left-hand' page and on the left side of a 'right-hand' page.

 

The most important thing is to write the book first. You can set the margins, play with the font sizes, etc. at some point during the editing process.

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Oh, and if you want to add images inside your book, make them the right size (height and width in pixels, taking into account an appropriate DPI) before you insert them into your book.

 

Don't try to make an image in Microsoft Word bigger by resizing the image container in the Word document.

 

The image file that you insert into a Word document is like a slide that you put into a slide projector. The image that appears in your Word document is a projection of the image that you inserted into your document. When you resize that image by dragging the edges of the image to make it bigger or smaller, that's like adjusting the knob on a slide projector - you're only changing how big the image appears to be, not changing the original image's height and width dimensions.

 

Commercial printers, it seems, don't play well with Microsoft Word images that have been resized to appear to be bigger than they really are.

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