Jane Friedman recently asked book design guru Joel Friedlander to talk about the dos and don'ts of book design: How Much Attention Should You Pay to Book Design? A Q&A With Joel Friedlander.
The most common mistakes in interior book design:
1. Not using full justification for their text, so that both the right and left margin square up and create a rectangle on the page
2. Not hyphenating the text, resulting in gaps and spaces on the page
3. Putting the odd-numbered pages on the left, when they should always be on the right
4. Leaving running heads on display pages like part or chapter openers
5. Margins that are either too small to allow the reader to easily hold the book, or that don’t take the printing and binding of the book into account
6. Publishing a book with no copyright page
How much should an author expect to pay an interior book designer?
For novels and other lightly formatted books, you can expect to pay between $200 and $1,500 for interior design. At the low end you’re likely to get a “template” design. At the higher end, expect to receive several custom designs prepared expressly for your book. You’ll also want the designer to take responsibility for producing the reproduction files for your printer, and make sure there’s an allowance for “author’s alterations,” because I’ve never seen a book yet that went all the way from manuscript to press without at least some changes being made.Joel mentions that for cover designs the range is between $200 and $3,500.
Professional design can make all the difference, when folks are browsing the cover is all they see. I know I've started reading many books because of their stunning covers.
You can read more of Joel Friedlander's design tips on his site The Book Designer.
Question: Do you have a cover design, or interior design, tip to share?
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