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Subscribe to support our latest title

St_Johns_Mock_Book

With our latest title due for publication shortly, the author has taken the unusual step of raising funds via subscriptions.

Fairly Mounted on a Hill by Simon Henderson is about the history of St John’s, Bromsgrove and its parishioners. The book has been written to help support the growing need of the Church in terms of restoration and protection for both this generation and those to come. A previous history of this Church was also funded by subscribers, and so the Friends of St John’s thought it would be nice to use this as a way to bring this title to publication. As with the previous title, this book shall feature the names of those who have subscribed as well as continuing to raise funds via the profits of the book after release.

The book is currently in its final stages of editing, however you can download an excerpt of this book now as a preview snippet.

Fairly Mounted on a Hill EXCERPT

If you would like to have your name immortalised in print, as well as supporting a great cause, then subscriptions are still open via Subscribe to “Fairly Mounted on a Hill”.

Are subscriptions a way you could fund your next book? Speak to us today to discuss your options to raise funds prior to publication.

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Book Writing for Non-fiction – How To Complete Your Manuscript – Part 3

Concept stage

Part 3 – Complete your manuscript

If you have already read Part 2, you will want to complete your draft manuscript. Having developed a skeleton manuscript in Part 1 including detailed writing of the first 4 sections, and prepping your manuscript to a more readable format you now need to finish it off ready for our editing service, or move onto our Base module.

Padding

Now you have a skeleton manuscript, your next step is to flesh out your content to complete your book ready for the next stage. The important thing here is to NOT waffle, but to use your padding to deepen the understanding of your concept, utilise your expert knowledge to its fullest while maintaining readability. Readers will quickly lose interest if the book becomes stalled by waffle. Add content where it enhances or eases the readers understanding of your message. There are a few ways we can do this…

Ways of drawing attention to key content

If you have an interesting side point to make, consider using a breakout box. This is a small box that stands out due to its graphical treatment – great for links, videos, further reading and side points for further consideration. They can also be used to refer to other sections and phrases within your book.

Even WordPress has a way of doing this by using block quotes, and here on Kissed Off we use these either for key reviews, authors comments and more.

A picture speaks a hundred words. This is especially true with training titles, as they can often communicate How To content more effectively than paragraphs of text. Consider a step-by-step series of images on how to do your instructions. Images are also a much more engaging way to express data, as well as letting the reader draw their own conclusions to the data you provide through charts, graphs and infographics. Images could be an inherent part of your entire book, or just used in a key section to underline part of your content. They can also be used as background imagery to signify changes in content between chapters – like visual chapter headings.

If a picture speaks a hundred words, video can speak thousands! Especially true with tutorials with particularly detailed, complex or critical instructions, videos can often be a quicker and easier way to express educational content. They can feature either recorded or animated content and will be hosted online and/or embedded into your book (depending on format/platform). These can either be placed in a breakout box (for more information watch… ) or as a key part of your content within your main text stream (this is as important as the rest of the book…).

Over the next few years, we will also see an increasing use of audio within eBook titles – either to add engagement with content, aid accessibility to key sections as well as being used for audio centred content.

With the use of interactivity increasing with eBooks, it is important to consider this fully as part of your complete manuscript.

Other ways of adding padding to your content

One of the first ways to add more to your content is to use quantifiable data from third parties to strengthen your content. You can do this either by external linking, or by using their content with permission (as the Author, you must seek this and prove you have done this to Kissed Off prior to publication). If using their content, we can restyle their data to suit your book’s design, or we can use their styling if you prefer and either use the original interpretation of data, or adapt it to your own interpretation. You could either use the data in its complete or abbreviated form.

Another way of adding weight to your content is to utilise expert opinion. Again, you will need to ensure you have the relevant permission and accredit them correctly within your content (this may include any external link they request). By using expert opinion to back up your content, the reader understands the point is credible and will look more seriously at how to implement it.

Likewise, you could use a third-party opinion which is opposite to your content to add a method of debate to your book and to show why your opinion is the more correct, or best practice, interpretation.

You could also utilise your internet based research as a method of providing further reading, as well as backing your viewpoint.

If your content is particularly complex or uses specialised terminology consider adding a Glossary to aid your reader. Likewise, instead of using complex terminology, consider how you can write in simpler terms. This can often, by its inherent nature, pad your content through more in-depth explanation of individual concepts. What seems simple to you, may not seem so simple to your reader.

Consider including your personal opinion as well as your professional opinion. This may not be appropriate for all titles, but it does allow your reader to connect with you as an Author and as an individual.

Re-read your content

Once you’ve completed the first draft of your content, go back through and read it from start to finish with fresh eyes. This will highlight to you any content you may have missed that you need to include. Make sure you have covered all the points in How To Do sections, any references are listed and that your content flows in a natural manner. Next, you will need to check your fundamental basics – spelling (don’t rely on spellcheck-especially for advanced terminology) and grammar, styling hierarchy and links (make sure any external links are still current and are linking to the correct content).

Once you are happy with your manuscript, ask a friend, family member or respected colleague to read your book. This will highlight readability, missing content, understanding and potentially errors you may have missed due to the familiarity with your content. If possible, get 2-3 people to view your manuscript from different backgrounds as we all read books differently and have varying degrees of knowledge.

Contact Kissed Off

At this stage we would look at drawing up (or amending) your Advanced Information Sheet. We would also be able to give you an idea on page counts, print run costs and more. You may also want to consider our Edit module, where we will also run through your manuscript for you and suggest any areas for improvement, additional content you may wish to consider or fundamental areas for improvement. Our edit module can affordably cut down any additional time that would be required in later stages of the book due to major amends and so forth, and we would strongly recommend this module for first time writers. For those that choose to advance directly to our Base module, we will carry out a basic spell check and grammar check only.

Publishing doesn't have to be difficult with Kissed Off Creations Ltd

If you want help with getting to this stage, consider either our write module or our curate module.

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Book Writing for Non-fiction – Setting up your manuscript hierarchy – Part 2

A drop of ink can make a million think

Part 2 – Setting up your manuscript

If you have already read Part 1, you will want to start to prepare a draft manuscript.

Having developed a skeleton manuscript in Part 1 including detailed writing of the first 4 sections, now we need to start to prep your manuscript to a more readable format.

Hierarchy

You need to consider your content in forms of an hierarchy. I’m going to use web terminology here as it is the easiest to refer to between software programs.

Heading 1

This will be used for your Chapter headings. Your chapters could be numbered or simply word based but in terms of your hierarchy you would keep this all as one style. If you can name this style, call it “Chapter Heading”.

If numbers feature in any of your Chapter headers, we would advise not numbering your chapters. For example, if your chapters go Intro-How to-Part 1 etc then labelling them Chapter 1 Intro-Chapter 3 Part 1 would become confusing. On the other hand, if your book is a linear format then we would recommend numbering the chapters to help maintain the readers connection with the content.

Heading 2

Dividing your chapters into manageable chunks for the reader is a great way of maintaining the reader’s engagement with your content. You could do this by using a Q&A format if it suits your subject, or use it to divide your chapter’s subject into its composite parts. It could be for an instruction book you form it out of “What do I do to get here”, “How do I do it” and “What have I done”, or it could be “Technique A”, “Technique B” and “When to use each technique”.

Heading 3

You would use Heading 3 as a title for a breakout box or a workbook section or similar – this can be a good way of re-iterating the content to the reader as well as bringing in deeper engagement. You could also use this header for captions for images and charts also, or to create steps in a How To.

Paragraph

This is your main text style for your content, and at this stage you will want to create a basic draft of your content. Moving forward you will want to create several character styles including bold and italics that will be used either for highlighting key phrases, or for emphasising words within a sentence.

In Part 3 – continuing your writing

In the next part we will be focussing on developing your manuscript for your remaining chapters.

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Book Writing for Non-fiction – Part 1

Write

This is our first post in our “How To” series, and focuses on the first stages of writing your non-fiction title.

Once you’ve decided to write your book, and after the initial brain storm phase, you will want to start focusing on how to structure your book. For a longer title, you will want to break your content down into chapters, but this tutorial will cover the initial stages of your book writing journey. Dividing your book’s content this way will help, not only with breaking down your writing into manageable chunks, but also will help when your book is transferred to electronic formats. For a shorter eBook or leaflet, it could be you break your book down into individual pages of content.

Planning and writing your first four sections

Preface

  • What is your experience in this field? – If you are writing in an area of new expertise, or if you feel the subject may impact negatively on your profession, you may choose to leave this section out.
  • What led to you writing this book?

Introduction

  • What is your book about? – summarise what you are going to say.
  • Who will find you book interesting and useful? – set out your audience and tone of writing.
  • What is your book going to say that no other title does? – why would someone buy THIS book?

Chapter 1: Getting Started

  • What is the starting position of your most basic reader?
  • Where do they need to get to to start using the book? – it could be your book is aimed at an advanced level, but you need to establish a common starting ground. Are there particular skills they need, additional material to cover a subject more in depth?
  • Step by step guide how to get there.

Chapter 2: First steps

  • What journey are you going to take the reader on?
  • How do they start implementing the first part of your “arc”?
  • What benefits will they see?
  • What help will they need to achieve this first step?

These questions will help you to form the content for your first four sections as well as establishing a “voice” for the book. Next you will need to consider additional content you may wish to include – images, charts, links to web content are all best considered at this early stage. Another key point for consideration is if you will be including snippets of information, highlighting key points or having some sort of interactive layout/worksheets.

Now you have a framework for your content, time to start fleshing it out into the book it will be. Consider bulleted and numbered lists – especially in the “Getting Started” section. It could be equipment lists or a brief overview of the points you are going to cover in the section. Could an image express an idea better than words alone? If you need prior knowledge to understand a point, where would you go to? And later on in the book, if you wanted to find out more on a discussed topic where would you go to?

In Part 2 – Setting up your manuscript

In developing the points above, you will want to start to prepare a draft manuscript. This will include chapter headings, key points, image references and at this stage you may have quotes and other relevant references you may wish to include. This will still be a long way before you are ready to hand us your manuscript. In our next How To, we discuss how your manuscript will develop from a skeleton script through to a workable manuscript. This will setup good habits ready for the next chapters of your book in Part 3.