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Self Publishing a Speaker's Book

Becoming a self published Speaker is fun, exhilarating and can put you on the track to a full time speaking career. There are many different kinds of Speaker' s Books, and in fact they can encompass almost any kind of book available, but the most common type of books would be one that would contain a lot of text and little in the way of graphics. The advantage to being publishing your own Speaker' s Book is that the sky is the limit on creativity. You are in complete control.

The advantage to being publishing your own Speaker’s Book is that the sky is the limit on creativity. You are in complete control.

Below, we’ll give you an outline to help start your Speaker's Book publishing process.

Where to Start
Most speakers write the manuscript for their book on their own home of office computer, using any one of the more popular word processing packages available.

How Do I Write a Book Manuscript?
The content or text of your manuscript will need to be one contiguous file. If all are writing and saving all your chapters as their own file, in order to print your book, all these files will need to be combined in one file of consecutive chapters. With most word processors these files can simply be cut and pasted into one main file. We recommend creating a new file for this purpose and leaving your chapters as single files for back up purposes.

Selecting software to write your manuscript with in can be bit daunting. Below we have outlined some of more common software package to help you make a selection.

Quark Express and Adobe InDesign
These software packages are best for books that require complicated page layout, and/or require volumes of graphics to be embedded within them. They can handle complex page design nicely, and produce excellent results when used for pictures and graphics. The only drawback to these excellent programs is that they do take time to learn, and are more expensive to purchase that ordinary word processors.

Microsoft Word
If you speakers manuscript is primarily text, with a little bit of graphics, Word is an excellent choice for you. It is easy to learn and accommodates a small number of graphics just fine, This software is also reasonably priced for most pocket books.

It’s easy to use and produces good print results, if you’re not going for a complicated layout. We do not recommend Word for projects that will use large amounts of graphics of complicated page layouts.

WordPerfect
This product is very similar to Word, and will also produce great results for anyone wanting primarily a text manuscript. Like Word, it is not designed to handle large volumes of graphics and layout designs, but otherwise is a good choice.

Editing and proofreading your Speaker' s Book
One reason why editing and proof reading are so important for as Speaker’s Book is that you want to make sure you leave the reader with the confidence that you know your topic and are a professional.  Providing books where there are typos and word errors will not leave a lasting, favorable impression on a reader.
We highly recommend proofreading and/or editing your manuscript before any printing is undertaken.

Self Help Book Size Layout
Since the paper your speaker’s book will be printed on comes in specific sizes, it’s best to try and keep within more cost effective formats. Another point to consider is that if your book is to be sold in book stores, there are specific formats and book sizes that are preferred by both bookstores and readers.

There are no specific sizes for speakers books as the topic are so far ranging, but generally those containing mostly text would be in the 6” by 9” up to 8.5”or 8.5” by 11”

Speaker' s Binding Types
The four main ways books for children can be put together or “bound” are listed below, with their pros and cons of each.

  1. Spiral Binding: 25 to 250 pages: This kind of bindings is common in work books, children’s books, and cook books. The advantages of spiral type binding is that when opened they lay flat which makes them easy to read and easy to write in if needed.

  2. Saddleback: up to 48 pages: These are the least elegant book binding to produce but are similar to spiral binding in that they can lay flat when opened up which makes them easier for a work book, for example, that may need to be written in. In some instances, books that do not have enough pages for other binding types may need to be saddle bound. The only disadvantages of saddle binding, is the constant wear and tear on the binding and staples, which tends to make these book appear more “disposable” that some other types of bindings.

  3. Hardcover: 50 to 1,000 pages: These are by far the most expensive to produce, but also the most valued because they look excellent, and last a long time. They can also be more desirable by some as they are considered a “premium product” and command a top dollar. Disadvantages, cost to produce, and excess weight for shipping.

  4. Soft Cover Perfect Binding: Approximately 40 to 300 pages: These soft cover books are an excellent choice because they somewhat retain the “book feel” of quality because they have a square back. Advantages include, less expensive than hard cover to produce while still looking very good (especially with a color cover).

Speaker' s Book Covers
The cover of your book can be one of the most important elements of your entire book publishing project.
It is important to put a cover on your book that reflects the best quality the book can convey, as well are represent what is contained within the book.

The front cover should have the title of the book and the author’s name, then images, where suitable should be added to enhance the cover. The back cover could be left blank, or a description of the book, or a paragraph about the author added. What ever you put on the back cover, we recommend that it be something that is … “in aid of helping to promote and sell your book, and yourself as a speaker”.

In terms of cover size, the cover will need to be slightly larger than the actual book size you are planning on printing. This is to allow for the final trimming of the book to square up the sides and make nice clean cuts. If you are going to be making a “perfect bind” book, you will also need to allow for the thickness of the back of the book (spine). This will be determined by the number of pages in the book.

If you are going to be using any images or graphics on the cover that need to print with high quality, we recommend using a professional graphic program such as Adobe Photoshop for best results.

We often recommend color covers for their attractive appearance. We also recommend that the covers are laminated to help make them less vulnerable to daily wear-and-tear.

Since most speakers are not graphic artists, coming up with a book cover idea can be very difficult.

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