Once you have decided upon the best format for your ebook, your next step will be the design process. No matter which format you choose, one of the most important factors in determining your ebook's overall success is your presentation.
Your ebook should not only look professional in design, but should also be well organized and easily navigated. In addition, your ebook should include images that will enhance its appearance and compliment your subject matter.
Although you can design your ebook using an application of your choice, for the purpose of this article, we will focus on designing your ebook with Microsoft Word.
When you purchase and install Adobe Acrobat, a shortcut button will be added to your Microsoft Word toolbar. This button will enable you to instantly convert your word document into a PDF document.
When you begin designing your ebook, think of each page you create as a page of a book, because that's exactly what it is. Your ebook is a book in electronic format. Although the structure of your ebook may vary, here is a basic guideline to assist you:
The first page of your ebook will represent your book cover. It should contain an image or logo that will compliment your ebook. This page should also include your ebook's title, followed by an opening statement.
The next portion of your ebook may contain a Foreword with information in regard to your copyrights, disclaimers or other important information.
Your Foreword may be followed by instructional information in regard to using your ebook, such as navigation. Your instructions might include an overview of how to navigate your ebook and even some screenshots.
Table of Contents
A Table of Contents will assist your readers in easily locating each section of your ebook.
When writing your text in Microsoft Word, you are provided with a number of options to assist you in formatting your pages in a specific layout. This powerful program will not only enable you to insert page numbers, headers, footers, borders and images, but it will also create your Table of Contents for you.
Creating Your Table of Contents will be one of your last steps in designing your ebook. In order for Microsoft Word to create your Table of Contents, you must first apply specific heading styles to the chapter headings that you would like to be displayed within your Table of Contents.
To add a style to your chapter headings, highlight your text and click on the style drop-down box on the left side of your toolbar and select Heading1. You can edit your Heading1 style to display your heading in the font and size of your choice.
If you would like to display any subtitles beneath your titles, simply follow the same procedure above. However, instead of selecting Heading1, select Heading2 and so on.
To build your Table of Contents, click on the page where you would like to insert your Table of Contents. Click on "Insert" then on "Index and Tables" and select the Table of Contents tab. Select your preferred format and Word will instantly create your Table of Contents.
Word builds your Table of Contents by searching for headings with specified styles. It then sorts the headings according to their heading level, references their page numbers, and then displays the Table of Contents within your document.
Once you create your Table of Contents, your document can be easily navigated by clicking on any page number within your Table of Contents. This will enable your readers to instantly jump to the corresponding chapter headings within your document.
Your introduction should follow your Table of Contents and might contain an overview of your ebook's subject matter or whatever you'd like. Your introduction will be a prelude to your chapters.
The next part of your ebook will contain your chapters. Your chapter titles should be displayed in a larger, bold font. Each new chapter should start at the top of a new page.
There are a number of ways you can spice up your ebook's appearance and give it a professional look and feel. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Inserting Page Numbers
You can insert page numbers simply by clicking on "Insert" then "Page Numbers." You will be presented with several formatting options for positioning, alignment and styles. If you would like to add additional text with your page numbers, you can use the "Header and Footer" option.
Headers and Footers
Headers and Footers can be used to insert specific information at the top and/or on the bottom of each of your pages. To insert these fields into your pages, click on "View" then on "Header and Footer." A header and footer area will appear at the top and bottom of each page. You can type in your text and/or use the toolbar to insert your information into your pages. You only have to insert the information into the "Header and Footer" area of your first page and it will be displayed on every page.
Borders can be used to enhance your ebook's appearance. To add a border to each of your pages, click on "Format" then on "Borders and Shading." Click on the "Page Border" tab and select your border style and color.
Just as borders can be used to enhance your ebook's appearance, images can also be used. Try to select images that will enhance your reader's experience and compliment your ebook's focus.
To insert an image within your page, click on "Insert" then on "Picture" and select an option.
Take your time and make sure you use Word's powerful features. It will assist you in creating a great looking ebook. If you're not sure how to do something, simply click on "Help" and it will guide you through the process.
In part five of our series, we will focus on designing an ebook in HTML format.