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Use Industry Standard Non-Fiction Book Elements

As a self publisher, you need to meet industry standards in order to get your book recognized. Thousands of books are published every day. This means you have lots of competition. If your book appears to be sub-standard, missing elements that are required by the publishing industry, you won’t get very far in publishing. I have seen the forums for self publishers where some authors argue that these elements are not really required. If you have read that somewhere, do not listen to it. All of the elements that are standard publishing industry are there for a reason. Front Matter Front Matter occurs prior to the core content of the book, and is typically arranged in this order: Title page (contains title & author only) Copyright page Copyright Acknowledgments (for titles containing reprinted / permissioned material) Dedication (if included) Table of Contents Foreword (if included – usually written by someone other than the author describing interaction with the author) Preface (if included – by the author, it ¬†covers the story of how the book came into being, or how the idea for the book was developed) Acknowledgments (if included) Introduction (if included – usually¬†states the purpose and goals of the book.) Go to a bookstore with this list, and note how these elements are included in books. Table of Contents Give special attention to your Table of Contents (TOC). A Table of Contents is critical for any non-fiction or how-to book – it is the map your readers use to navigate your book. Prepare your Table of Contents(TOC) after you finish writing and editing your manuscript. List each part, section, chapter, and headings that you feel are appropriate. Many books list the title of the chapter, plus the primary heads in each chapter. Your manuscript must match the order, context, and titles of the TOC. Body Matter After the...