In this section:
You’ve signed your contract, now you need to prepare your manuscript for production. Before you do so, make sure you:
In order to make the design process efficient, we need you to:
Click here to download our Sample Manuscript Layout Word file. This shows you what your finished manuscript should look like and offers lots of useful advice. Please read the entire document.
In the Home menu on the Styles section of the toolbar, right-click Normal and then Modify.
Now you need to make sure there are no paragraph indents. Click Format, then Paragraph
This puts the text in a consistent style and removes any paragraph indents. InDesign, our design program, adds indents automatically, if you do it yourself it will mess up the process.
Go through your manuscript carefully and re-apply any elements that may have been lost. For example:
The Designer will do this when making the proofs. Please just follow our instructions.
The Designer will choose an appropriate font at the Proofs stage. If you have a specific font in mind for the finished book, please make a note in the Author Stylesheet section of your Production page.
Don't use a carriage return at the end of lines (except for poems). If you do that, then someone has to take them all out again.
A carriage return is when you press the return button (⏎) on your keyboard in order to move your cursor the beginning of the next line.
You can see the carriage returns in your document in Microsoft Word by clicking the Show/Hide formatting marks on the Home ribbon.
This is possibly the most important point of all, and the most expensive to remedy.
Do not number your pages. Our design program does that automatically
Macros are a series of Word commands and instructions that you automate group together as a single command to accomplish a task automatically.
Don’t use them.
If you use mathematical symbols in the text, supply the font for the typesetter.
There are so many different ones around it is better for all if we use yours.
The preliminary pages (or “prelims”) are the opening pages of the book.
The prelims consist of the following information generally in this order, (you do not have to include all of these, but please always provide a contents page for non-fiction): Endorsements; Half-title; Half title verso; Title page verso; Dedication or epigraph; Contents; Preface; Forward; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Any general maps; Introduction
Which endorsements to choose is a question of judgement. It doesn’t look good having too many pages of praise by people the reader hasn’t heard of, and it’s possible to “oversell.” However, short summary statements from reputable sources are helpful.
Full endorsements, if there are sufficient, can be added here in the front of the book.
Some publishers put endorsements in capitals, some in italics with quotation marks, others in italic with no quotation marks, or they ring the changes – we mostly use straight text with quotation marks for the back cover, but this can vary depending on what looks best with the overall design.
Lay out your endorsements like this:
An important and fascinating book about the origin, history and impending demise of the ego – humanity's collective dysfunction. The Fall is highly readable and enlightening, as the author's acute mind is at all times imbued with the higher faculty of spiritual awareness.
Eckhart Tolle, bestselling author of The Power of Now and A New Earth: Awakening to your Life's Purpose
Feel free to add all your other books whether we are the publisher or not.
Always a right-hand page and carries the title.
A left-hand page which may list other books you have written, others in the series, or be left blank.
A right-hand page that carries the full title and any subtitle, the name(s) of the author(s) and the company logo.
This left-hand page will be completed by us to fulfill standard legal and bibliographical requirements and includes details of the copyright holders. For ease of ordering by individuals or shops who happen to come across the book and are not familiar with the publisher, we also include details of distributors around the world here.
Used for a dedication if wanted, or contents. Sometimes the dedication may be placed on p.iv if we are short of space.
Pages, generally, begin on a right-hand page and should include:
Check that the chapter titles match those in the text.
Remember, don't add page numbers – these will be added at the Proofs stage!
Written by the author to explain the purpose of the book and its target audience. It’s a chance for you to communicate directly with the reader, establish a relationship with him/her. It usually ends with your name or initials. Personal thanks are, generally, included at the end of the preface.
Usually written by a renowned expert in the subject at the invitation of the author.
Can be listed separately or included in the preface. It is not necessary to ask permission from people to acknowledge them. Acknowledgements for borrowed illustrations and tables should be included in the captions.
For fiction, and certainly for children's/YA, it's better to have Acknowledgements at the back of the book, so that there's less to scroll through on Amazon Look Inside at the start.
This may form part of the prelims or be included in the text, depending on length. Broadly speaking, if it’s short and by its nature stands outside the text, it should be in the preliminary pages; if it is long, it may be better treated as an introductory chapter to the text and numbered accordingly.
If you have Parts, number them I, II, III, IV and refer to them in the text as Part I, Part II, etc.
Part titles normally stand on their own on a new right-hand page, with the next (left-hand) page blank and the following chapter starting on a new right-hand page.
New chapters start at the top of the next page. Do use the Page Break feature when starting a new one.
Do not use more than three levels of heading (the chapter title does not count). Preferably, do not use more than one.
Don't indent paragraphs, as the design program will register the carriage return and do this automatically.
Don't add an extra line space between paragraphs where the subject changes (they create too many problems, particularly at the top and bottom of pages, and are too easily seen as errors. Either change the text to avoid the need for the extra line, or please use three asterisks or a subheading.
Do add a blank line before and after indented quotes.
The design program does not pick up indented quotes automatically, they have to be done manually, and this will help show the designer where the quote is in the text.
Avoid tables if you can.
A handful of them can take more time to set than the rest of the book.
If there are any changes at proof stage, the whole thing has to be reconstructed bit by bit.
They also don’t transfer to ebooks.
If you really need to, we offer presentation guidance in Tables, Images, Illustrations, diagrams, and photos (and we reserve the right to discuss a charge for it).
We generally prefer you not to use images, but if you have to, do not add them to the Word document.
Images must be uploaded separately and their place in the manuscript marked with zzz. See Images: Illustrations, diagrams, photos for instructions.
Type in numbered lists, rather than using automated lists.
If you want to use other ways of presenting information, such as boxes or tinted panels (tinted by typesetter), mark the first page with the relevant passages. Type “zzz” before and after the relevant text. Similarly type in “zzz” to mark where you want illustrations to appear, as in: zzz Fig 3.
Most copyediting queries are on the end-matter.
End-matter headings should be included in the contents, and might comprise of the following, in this order:
We include some copy about your imprint at the back of the book along the lines of:
If you have enjoyed this book, why not tell other readers by posting a review on your preferred booksite. Recent bestsellers from IMPRINT are:
LIST OF BESTSELLING TITLES IN YOUR IMPRINT
Find more titles and sign up to our readers’ newsletter at CLUSTER WEBPAGE. Follow us on Facebook at CLUSTER FACEBOOK LINK and Twitter at CLUSTER TWITTER LINK. Most titles are published in paperback and as an e-book. Paperbacks are available in physical bookshops. Both print and ebook editions are available online. Readers of ebooks can click on the live links in the titles to order.
In the ebook, this end-matter also includes live links to bestselling titles, our website and social media.
Every year, we review this end-matter and update which titles are listed. We tend to focus on the strong sellers. We cannot change the selection for different books, or get into discussions about which titles should be selected. It doesn't imply that you are personally endorsing these titles (though they will be from within the same imprint), just that the publisher is promoting them.
END-MATTER FOR STOP PRESS MURDER BY PETER BARTRAM, ROUNDFIRE BOOKS
Many books do not need footnotes. But if it is a reference-style work, it always helps to cite your sources, particularly for reviewers. They often come to snap judgments on books on the basis of the range of reference used. Give credit where it is due.
Do not use the Microsoft Word automated footnote feature. If you want to use footnotes or endnotes you must enter them manually.
Our design program does not translate footnotes or endnotes correctly when we feed the Word document into it. These can also cause the ebook conversion to fail!
If you send in a manuscript that has used this facility we will have to return it to you for amendment.
If you DO use footnotes, put them at the end of each chapter, not at the bottom of the page. Footnotes at the bottom of the page do not work in ebooks – pages show differently on different e-readers, and if you increase the font size for ease of reading, they are no longer at the bottom of the page. Linking notes is too expensive to do.
If your manuscript comes in with footnotes at the bottom of the page, we will ask you to resend it with the footnotes at the end of the chapter.
The position of footnotes in the text is indicated by footnote indicators – superior numbers running serially throughout each chapter.
Present them in the numerical “Vancouver” style. Please don’t use roman numerals. They have to be changed individually, and it takes too long.
You must enter each endnote number in the text in Superscript to make it the right size. Superscript is on the Word formatting toolbar – it is the button that has x2 on it. To superscript, just highlight the item and click on the button, then type the endnotes in manually at the end of the chapter or the end of the book, in the same size type as the rest of the text.
Check that there are no omissions and that the number of notes in each chapter corresponds with the number of notes in the notes section.
If you have used automated footnotes or endnotes, here is how to strip them and add manually:
Add them in a list at the back of the manuscript under "References."
Please cross-check that all the references cited in the text are included in the list (and vice versa), and that the name(s) and date match (if using the author and year system).
Please include the publisher and place of publication for book references, and the volume and page numbers for journals. Most manuscript queries arise from missing or inaccurate information presented in references.
For more detailed information, and on how to quote internet sources, read the OU Harvard Guide to Quoting References.
We avoid indices as much as we can
We are not an academic publisher bringing out scholarly works. For popular books indices are not necessary. Sometimes, where they might be helpful, they are not worth the time and cost. Reviewers who complain about the lack of an index in a book are usually not familiar with publishing economics.
If you really want an index, we require you to provide it.
If you want to use a professional freelance indexer, you can find one via the Society of Indexers (UK) or the American Society for Indexing.
Do consider that, increasingly, most of your books will be bought digitally, where there will be no index, and making an index could be an unsustainable effort in time and cost. You might want to consider a “Select Index” of a couple of pages; it may be a good compromise, avoiding the need to include everything.
Pull out words to be indexed as you do your final edit, and add them to the back of the manuscript. Important words can generally be picked out on a single reading.
Put a note in the Production Workflow Section notes that you would like to do an index. When the final proofs are done, they will be sent to you. You can then manually search the final proofs to find the correct page numbers that need to be in the index. Complete your index and return it to us.
Use single spacing, with each entry beginning on a new line. Use a comma to separate each entry from the first page number.
If you wish to provide a full index, minor topics can be included in the more general ones with a “see” reference to the indexed term. This can be done as the index progresses, or a fuller index can be condensed in this way at a later stage.
Important note: when you get the final proofs in the form of a PDF of the book from the designer, your viewing program may give you two options on how to display pages of the document:
When you search the proofs, go for the second option, as otherwise all the page numbers will be out by the number of the prelims.
Our feeling is that it’s best to stick with your preferred style, and confine copyediting to ironing out clear grammatical mistakes and making it consistent.
However, we do have a “loose” house style, (eg we prefer American Spelling) and which our editors will work towards unless you tell us otherwise.
Never assume that the Copyeditor or Designer will understand what you want unless you spell it out clearly.
We get a lot of these, so many that we don't keep track of them... but here are a couple of recent ones:
And just to let you know that the books have arrived safely and in the most trouble-free manner. I am delighted with the look and the feel of them. I think the cover designer has done a magnificent job, as has everyone else connected with this project. I read the whole book through last night and was positively excited by what I read! The only minor flaws I detected were the repetition of the word 'that' at the end of line 14 on page 38 and my irritatingly unnecessary and gramatically faulty writing of the words 'far more' at the end of the last line on page 63. Otherwise it is all perfect – well, pretty close to that! I shall save the world yet, I tell you!!! Please forward this e to John Hunt, Trevor Greenfield and Denise Smith, and have a good day and a wonderful weekend. Regards, Richard.
Richard Oxtoby – Trouble with Christianity (on receipt of books)
Could I just say how impressed I am by John Hunt Publishing. The cover of the book is brilliant and the speed of the publishing process puts other companies to shame.
David Sunderland – These Chivalrous Brothers
I wanted to take a moment to say thanks to Dominic, Maria, Catherine, and the rest of the staff and management of Roundfire Books for everything they've done to make my new novel Fragile Brilliance become a published book. Everyone involved was so supportive of the book/manuscript from the beginning and I appreciated it so much. Everyone has treated me so well and treated me like a real author, which is something that really makes me feel special. I could not be more pleased with how the book looks and how it was marketed and distributed. My entire experience with you all has just been awesome!
Eliot Parker – Fragile Brilliance