Tag Archives: book design

Encore! 4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer.

4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer. “You know a design is good when you want to lick it.”~ Steve Jobs

We all love good design. That’s why the iPod and Ikea have been so successful. Design is the difference between something that is OK and something that is memorable. If you hope to have a successful personal history business producing books, you’ll want to include a designer on your team. Here  are four important benefits of good design. Good design affects … Read More


Monday’s Link Roundup.

A Happy July 4th to all my American readers. If you’re taking it easy today, why not settle back  and check out some of the great links in this Monday’s Link Roundup? My favorite is Any Last Words? It made me ponder what I’d want for the opening line of my obituary.

  • What Is the Difference Between a Hobby and a Business? “It’s important to get the right answer to this question, because it has broad implications regarding your taxes and bookkeeping. In this post, we’ll discuss this important topic and provide some additional resources that you can turn to with questions.”
  • Best-Ever Guide to Integrating Stories into Speeches, Presentations, Indeed, Any Influential Message. “A couple of weeks ago… I noted that Terrence Gargiulo, who delivered a commencement speech recently, was “considering doing a meta analysis of how [he] worked with the craft of story making to research, design, and deliver this talk. Well, he’s done it, and the resulting white paper is a wonderful primer on bringing story into the communication of any kind of influential message, including speeches and presentations.”
  • Any Last Words? The narrator of  Timothy Schaffert’s new novel The Coffins of Little Hope  is the 83-year old obituary writer of a small-town newspaper in Nebraska.  “Inspired we asked you to provide the first sentence to your own obituary…The responses — humorous, whimsical, and poignant — rolled in, and we asked the authors of our favorites to read them.” [Thanks to Pat McNees of Writers and Editors for alerting me to this item.]
  • Chicago Billboards, 1942. “This film produced by the outdoor advertising industry in the 1940s is a great slice of everyday history. It shows some classic product advertisements, vintage Chicago street scenes and antique vehicles. We also get an in depth story about how outdoor advertising works. This third part is in gorgeous color including some great footage of public transit.”

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Monday’s Link Roundup.

In this Monday’s Link Roundup there’s a mix of the practical and whimsical. Having difficulty calculating how much to charge your clients? Sign up now for cj madigan’s Webinar: Calculating Your Hourly Rate: the Key to Profitability. Purchasing a new audio recorder? Then you’ll definitely want to read Choosing an Audio Recorder.  For a break from the practical, take a look at Famous Authors And Their Typewriters. It’s delightful.

  • Webinar: Calculating Your Hourly Rate: the Key to Profitability.Wednesday, June 15, 2011 4 PM Eastern/1 PM Pacific. “This webinar will be useful to anyone who needs to confidently answer the question: What do you charge? It’s particularly helpful for those who have recently left a salaried position and are now on their own as an independent contractor: personal historians, designers, writers, editors, photographers, transcribers, programmers, consultants—anyone who needs to set their own price for services rendered.”
  • A Brief History of the Pun. “…we’re ecstatic for the release of John Pollack’s The Pun Also Rises: How the Humble Pun Revolutionized Language, Changed History, and Made Wordplay More Than Some Antics — an entertaining and illuminating exploration of how wordplay evolved to be much more than a cheap linguistic thrill or the product of bottom-feeder copywriters.”
  • Famous Authors And Their Typewriters. “There’s something magical about catching a glimpse of one of your favorite authors at work – even a photo of the epic event can send an anxious thrill down your spine, as if you might be able to see some hint of literary genius in posture or setting, in attire or facial expression. And it’s even better if they’re working on a typewriter.”
  • Choosing an Audio Recorder. “We have broken down our reviews of audio recorders into five considerations. These are things to consider when purchasing portable digital audio recorders:”
  • How to Podcast. “This is the home of the free podcast tutorial that will take your podcast from concept to launch fast and for minimal cost.”
  • British Library creates a “national memory’ with digital newspaper archive. “The library is one year into its plan to digitise 40m news pages from its vast 750m collection, housed in Colindale, north London. This autumn, the library will reinvent its cavernous vaults as a website, where amateur genealogists and eager historians will be able to browse 19th-century newsprint from their home computer.”
  • Top 8 Cover Design Tips for Self-Publishers. “We’ve all seen them. The train wrecks. The art class projects. The cringe-inducing artwork. It’s the world of do-it-yourself book cover design…But anyone who can write and publish a book ought to be able to avoid at least the worst mistakes in cover design.”

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Monday’s Link Roundup.

In this Monday’s Link Roundup you really owe it to yourself to take a look at “Welcome to Pine Point”. It’s a dazzling digital reconstruction of a place that no longer exists and a glimpse into the lives of some of the people who lived there. If you’re looking for a unique way to present personal histories, take a few minutes to read the interview with the creators and then head on over to Pine Point. It’s quite a trip!

  • “Welcome to Pine Point”: digital narrative chases memory and loss.“What if your hometown disappeared, literally vanished from the map? How would you hold onto it? Would the community of people who had lived there continue? “Welcome to Pine Point” is a website that explores the death of a town and the people whose memories and mementos tell its story today. The site lives online under the auspices of the National Film Board of Canada and came into the world via the creative duo of Michael Simons and Paul Shoebridge (also known as The Goggles).”
  • The Main Principle of Charging a Flat Rate. “…more entrepreneurs are turning to flat-rate pricing structures instead of hourly rates because of the advantages that this option offers. Here are the main arguments in favor of flat-rate pricing to assist in your decision of which option to choose.”
  • The Death of Book Design. “Book Design. (1452 – 2011). Born near Mainz, Germany, Book Design came of age in the heady atmosphere of Venice in the Italian Renaissance. He went through a rocky adolescence when he seemed to lose track of his roots, but matured into the confident and gracious Book Design of the twentieth-century’s Golden Age of Letterpress.” [Thanks to Sarah White for alerting me to this item.]
  • The Problem With Memoirs. “There was a time when you had to earn the right to draft a memoir, by accomplishing something noteworthy or having an extremely unusual experience or being such a brilliant writer that you could turn relatively ordinary occur­rences into a snapshot of a broader historical moment. Anyone who didn’t fit one of those categories was obliged to keep quiet. Unremarkable lives went unremarked upon, the way God intended. But then came our current age of oversharing, and all heck broke loose.”
  • Ultimate PhotoGuide. “Our goal is simple – provide the highest-quality photography instructional videos, tips and techniques and a place where photographers can come together– whether new hobbyists or seasoned professionals, to exchange ideas and experiences.”
  • Books as a Way to Grace a Room. “Thatcher Wine of Juniper Books creates custom libraries and decorative “book solutions” for designers, high-end builders and individuals. He can wrap books he’s collected — literary classics, for example, or German philosophy — in jackets of his own design.”
  • 26 Tips to Enhance Your Experience on LinkedIn. “With more than 85 million users and “a new member being added every second,” LinkedIn is often regarded as the premier social networking site for business professionals. Companies also see LinkedIn as a valuable place to promote their products and services.”

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Monday’s Link Roundup.

In this Monday’s Link Roundup I couldn’t resist including David Carter’s Pop-Up Books for Children of All Ages. If you want to treat yourself to a moment of sheer whimsy and delight, don’t miss this item. If you’re in a more serious frame of mind, I suggest How to Write a (Good) Sentence or Ira  Glass on the Art of Storytelling.

  • five workflow stumbling blocks and how to avoid them. “Book design and production is a complicated process with a lot of moving parts: text and graphics, multiple people, as well as a fair share of technology gremlins. Some glitches are bound to arise, but many are predictable and thus can be avoided—or at least the effect of them ameliorated—by some advanced planning. Here are five common stumbling blocks:”
  • The Extraordinary Craft of Story Building. “People connect with stories that move them and most every business can and should tell a story that helps prospects and customers connect at a deeper level. I truly believe the Internet, while making it easy to find information, has left us craving real connections, with real people, and the companies they serve”
  • A List of U.S. Book Printers from Aeonix Publishin Group. “Out of some 50,000 printers in the U.S., there are about 100 printers that either specialize in printing books or where printing books make up a significant portion of their work. Since these printers are specifically equipped to print books (and very little else) they can print your book very efficiently and deliver them to you at a price far lower than anything that a local print shop can ever do–even with the transportation charges across the country.”
  • Holocaust Historical Data Goes Digital. “Israel’s Yad Vashem memorial, the world’s largest collection of Holocaust documents, is teaming up with Google to make its photographs and documents interactive and searchable on the Internet.”
  • Ira Glass on the Art of Storytelling. “Since 1995, Ira Glass has hosted and produced This American Life (iTunes – Feed – Web Site), the award-winning radio show that presents masterfully-crafted stories to almost 2 million listeners each week. What’s the secret sauce that goes into making a great story, particularly one primed for radio or TV? Glass spells it out in four parts.”
  • How To Write a (Good) Sentence by Stanley Fish. “The problem with Strunk & White,[The Elements of Style] in Fish’s view, is that “they assume a level of knowledge and understanding only some of their readers will have attained,” that is, the Cornell kids whose secondary education did at least a halfway decent job of teaching them the basics. Fish’s aim is to offer a guide to sentence craft and appreciation that is both deeper and more democratic. What, at base, is a sentence? he asks, and then goes on to argue that the standard answer based in parts of speech and rules of grammar teaches students “nothing about how to write.” [Thanks to Pat McNees of Writers and Editors for alerting me to this item.]

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From The Archives: 4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer.

4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer. “You know a design is good when you want to lick it.”~ Steve Jobs ________________________ We all love good design. That’s why the iPod and Ikea have been so successful. Design is the difference between something that is OK and something that is memorable. If you hope to have a successful personal history business producing books, you’ll want to include a designer on your team. Here  are four important benefits of good design. Good design affects … Read More

Do You Want to Make Your Printed Pages Look Better?

In a previous post 4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer I extolled the benefits of good book design. I noted that for professional personal historians, hiring  a designer as part of the team was critical for long term success.

For those of you who have some  good visual sense or can’t at the moment afford a book designer, this post is for you. Here’s a list of resources for the DIY book designer.

Sites

The Book Designer. “To help publishers and authors who decide to publish their own books get to market with a great looking, properly constructed book, on time and on budget.”

The Self-Publishing Review. “The Self-Publishing Review is an online magazine devoted to self-publishing: book reviews, publisher reviews, interviews, news, opinion, and how to’s.”

Articles

7 Keys to DIY Graphic Design on No Budget. “Take these notes into consideration next time you have to get a creative project done on no budget:”

Simple, Practical Color Theory. “The mastery of color theory, relations and harmonies is one of the primary steps to uncovering the full beauty and potential of your images (in the realms of art, design and/or photography). Find out more in this simple, practical, colorful guide.”

Book Design, Part I. “In the first of three columns about book design, John D. Berry begins his look at how the books we read end up looking the way they do.”

Book Design, Part II. “John D. Berry continues his treatise on book design. In this second of three articles, he focuses on text spacing and typeface selection.”

Book Design, part III. “Closing out his series on book design, John D. Berry takes on display type, front and back matter, and playing nice with others.”

Books

Non-Designer’s Design Book, The (3rd Edition) (Paperback) by Robin Williams.  This book is a classic and my favorite. “There is an ever-growing number of people attempting to design pages with no formal training. This book is the one place they can turn to find quick, non-intimidating, excellent design help…”

Book Design and Production by Pete Masterson “…this book will help you understand the book production process and the principles of good cover and interior book design. It will allow you to look at a book design and immediately see the common errors and to see that a book is following the traditions of good book design that gives credibility to your message.”

The Elements of Graphic Design: Space, Unity, Page Architecture, and Type (Paperback) by Alexander W. White.”Unlike other graphic design books, The Elements of Graphic Design reveals the secrets of successful graphic design from the unique perspective of the page’s “white space.” With the help of carefully selected examples from art, design, and architecture, the role of white space as a connection between page elements is thoroughly explored.”

Design Elements: A Graphic Style Manual
(Paperback) by Timothy Samara. “This book is a fun and accessible handbook that presents the fundamentals of design in lists, tips, brief text, and examples. “

Before & After Page Design (Paperback) by John McWade. The author “…walks his own talk, bringing you a beautifully clear, cohesive, and elegant primer on page design. You’ll learn by example how to design single-page and multi-page publications,..”

Do you have any favorite resources for the DIY designer? Let me know. Love to hear from you.

Photo by Zeptonn

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4 Reasons Why You Need to Hire a Book Designer.

“You know a design is good when you want to lick it.”~ Steve Jobs

________________________

We all love good design. That’s why the iPod and Ikea have been so successful. Design is the difference between something that is OK and something that is memorable. If you hope to have a successful personal history business producing books, you’ll want to include a designer on your team. Here  are four important benefits of good design.

  1. Good design affects people emotionally. You’ll lose clients if your books have great content but look homemade. When prospective clients see your work, they don’t have time to read the content. They’ll be primarily influenced by how attractive the books look. Advances in neuroscience have shown that people tend to act first on emotion, then follow it with reasoning to support their choice. The more people are  emotionally drawn to your work, the more likely they’ll hire you.
  2. Good design conveys credibility. Don Norman, a former Apple design guru, sees the value of producing good design. He says,“We all have the feeling that attractive things work better.” If you produce  first class books, your company projects quality, care, and professionalism.
  3. Good  design supports and enhances the content. It’s true that content is vital. But if you have to struggle to read a book, you’re not likely to enjoy it. We can all recall coping with a poorly designed book with type that’s too small or inappropriate for the subject, no white space for the text to breath, lack of headings to provide guidance, and photos placed without any seeming logic. Remember that in addition to your client, your book will be read by others. Your books are your calling card. They speak in your absence. Will your books speak of quality and great design?
  4. Good design differentiates you from the others. It’s becoming a crowded field in the world of self publishing. What will set you apart from all the others  is  design that is compelling.

Image by Juhan  Sonin

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