Making your Own Ebook Part Seven – Finishing the Framework for the book

Now that you know how to set up the basics we can go through setting up the rest of the framework for the main pages so that you have a complete basic template to use for your E-books. Once you have a template all you will need to do is to replace the text and save under a different name and you are nearly ready to go.

Last time, we put in place one Chapter header and a Table of Contents. The TOC was set to display anything formatted with the Heading 1 Style. The next step is to put in place a few more chapters and then we can put in the “Front Matter” of Titles, Copyright page, etc. and do some final formatting before creating the Ebook.

If you are planning to do a number of books then you can save the final “blank” document as a template and use it as the basis for more books.

Adding new chapters

You can use Ctrl-Alt-Shift (combined) + “S” key to make the Styles list appear on the right of the page.

Now that we have the chapter style set up (Heading 1) it is easy to create new chapters. Simply type the chapter name in a new paragraph at the end of the previous chapter and click on the “Heading 1” style to format the title. Remember to keep the cursor in the same line as the chapter title, or you can always highlight the title with the cursor before clicking on Heading 1” This will format the heading and force it to start on a new page.

In my test file I have created 4 chapters and before I format the headings it looks like this…

Word 12 - Adding New Chapters 1Then I click the mouse in the first of the new chapter headings…

Word 13 - Adding New Chapters 2

 I then complete the rest of the Chapter headings and can update the table of contents. Before updating I have:

Word 14 - Adding New Chapters 3

Update the Table of content

Now we can update the Table of Contents

Word 15 - Update TOC

Add the rest of the pages

Now we can add the Title page, Copyright page and Acknowledgements page to complete the basic framework. As you probably don’t want these page headings to appear in your Table of contents it is best to set up a couple of additional styles. And remember that you can always add these manually to the TOC later if you change your mind.

The first thing I want is the Title page and in this example we will put in the Title, a Subtitle and the Author’s name:

There are built-in styles in Word for “Title” and “Subtitle” but if you don’t like these it is easy to modify these to create a style to suit YOUR taste – but stick to the basic font types and only mess with the size and spacing. In my test file I have modified “Title” and “Subtitle” and have added a new Style, “Author”.

Lets’s look at the process for setting up The Main Title. You can use the same process to set up the other styles once you know the routine.

Open your word file and go to the first page. Type in your “Title, Subtitle and Author’s name so that they appear as three separate lines. In case they have appeared in another style, and you need to reset them, use the mouse to highlight the three lines and click on “Clear all” at the top of your styles list. This will set them all to “Normal”.

Word 16 - Clear All

 Left click in the title of the book than Right click on the style “Title” and click on “Modify”. The built-in “Title” style in Word has an underline and is “Left Aligned”. Also, it has little space above & below so I went into “Modify/Format/Paragraph” set the Alignment to Centered and the spacing to 30 above and 30 below.

Word 19 - Modify Title Style 1

 I don’t want the underline so I went into “Modify/Format/Borders” and clicked on “None” to remove the border. Then Click on OK, and again to exit the dialogue box. We now have the title in a reasonable format.

If you have a subtitle for the book you can use the built-in style also and then modify it. I used 16pt Arial, Centered, with 30 pt space below.

We don’t have a built in style for “Author” so I created a new style called “Author” and another called “Centered”.

To set up a new style, click on the first of the icons at the bottom of the styles list: If you hover the mouse pointer over the icon it will show “New Style”.

Word 17 - New style

 When you click on “New Style” you get the usual “Modify” dialogue and can alter as needed. For “Author” I made it 16pt, centred, with 30 pt above in the paragraph spacing.

Word 21 - Settings for Author style

Using the same technique I created another style called “centered” and the only change I made on that was to center the text. This is a useful style to have in the body of the book for things like quotes etc.. In this case I used it to center the “by” line on the title page. If you have been following along you should now have something that looks like this:

Word 22 - Title page

 You may want to add other info on the title page, such as the Publisher identity, so just use the same approach to create what you need. Don’t be concerned about trying to put the publisher name at the bottom of the page as that will not work. Just put some spacing above it using the “paragraph spacing” settings in the modify dialogue.

If you look at my example above you will see that all the “Formatting Marks” are shown and there are no Paragraph marks between the lines. ALL the spacing is achieved inside the style.

If the text does not look the way you want it to be you can always change it. Right-click the name in the Style gallery and choose “Modify”. Make your changes and click OK. All text formatted with that style will change automatically to match the new settings.

Note: One point to note here is that we have NOT used Heading styles on the Title Page. This is deliberate. If we used Heading styles for some of the lines these might appear in the Table of contents (TOC) and we don’t really want that. I recommend using Heading Styles only for items that you want to see in the TOC.

Copyright page

You can now use the same techniques to create a new page for the Copyright info. When you create the page it looks better to have it appear as a separate page so you need to edit the Paragraph style, Line & Page breaks, for the top line to tell it to start on a new page.

Contents Page Formatting

The same approach goes for the Contents page, Just format the top line to get it to start on a new page and make the Table of Contents Title “Bold”. At this stage it is best to leave the rest of the contents alone as the E-reader will format it to show the list as hyperlinks.

Acknowledgements and / or dedication, Foreword, Preface, Prologue

Same process here and if you want the item to appear in the TOC format the header for the page as “Header 1”.

You should now have a series of pages like this:

Word 23 - Testfile


When it comes to the body of the text in the manuscript, there are generally only two options that are used to indicate the start of a new paragraph.

  1. Indent the first line OR
  2. Don’t indent, but leave a space between paragraphs.

There is a tendency today to both indent AND create extra space between paragraphs and this can cause some confusion when paragraph spacing is used to indicate the beginning of a new train of thought, e.g. The best option is to choose either 1. or 2., but not both. Number 1. is the more traditional approach, and still works well so that is the approach I usually recommend.

To add to the confusion, the default behavior is different for Kindle and EPUB. The Kindle automatically indents each paragraph, and must be told when not to, and the EPUB default is leave space between paragraphs.

So how do you create a solution that works for both?

What I do is to set the “Normal” style to have an indent and create a new style, based on “Normal” called “No Indent” and simply set the indent to zero. Then at the beginnings of chapters and where there is a “Scene change” in the text I apply the “No Indent” Style.

If you plan to indent paragraphs this HAS to be done in the style definition, NOT WITH TABS or SPACES! Just go into the “Normal” style and modify it:

Next time

We will go through what has to be done if you have already written and formatted your text and need to fix it!

©DavidCronin 2015 The Ebook Doctor