Book design

Book design is the art of incorporating the content, style, format, design, and sequence of the various components and elements of a book into a coherent unit. In the words of the renowned typographer Jan Tschichold (1902–1974), book design, "though largely forgotten today, [relies upon] methods and rules upon which it is impossible to improve, [and which] have been developed over centuries. To produce perfect books, these rules have to be brought back to life and applied".[1] Richard Hendel describes book design as "an arcane subject", and refers to the need for a context to understand what that means.[2]

Design for a metalwork book cover, by Hans Holbein the Younger
Design by Hans Holbein the Younger for a metalwork book cover (or treasure binding)

Structure

Modern books are paginated consecutively, and all pages are counted in the pagination whether or not the numbers appear. The page number, or folio, is most commonly found at the top of the page, flush left verso, flush right recto. The folio may also be printed at the bottom of the page, and in that location it is called a drop folio. Drop folios usually appear either centered on each page or flush left verso and flush right recto.[3]

Front matter

Front matter (or preliminaries; shortened to "prelims") comprises the first section of a book, and is usually the smallest section in terms of the number of pages. Front-matter pages are traditionally numbered in lower-case Roman numerals (i, ii, iii, iv, v, etc.), which prevents renumbering the remainder of a book when front-matter content is added at the last moment, such as a dedication page or additional acknowledgments. Page number is omitted on blank pages and display pages (i.e., such stand-alone pages as those for the half title, frontispiece, title page, colophon, dedication, and epigraph), and it is either omitted or a drop folio is used on the opening page of each section of the front matter (e.g., table of contents, foreword, preface).[3] Front matter generally appears only in the first of a multi-volume work, although some elements (such as a table of contents or index) may appear in each volume.

The following table defines some common types of front matter, and the "voice" (or point of view) in which each can be said to be given:

Name Voice Purpose
Half title Publisher Usually a single line in capital letters, precedes the title page, and only contains the title (as opposed to the author, publisher etc. found on the full title page) with a blank verso.
Frontispiece Author or publisher A decorative illustration on the verso facing the title page. It may be related to the book's subject, or be a portrait of the author.
Title page Publisher Repeats the title and author as printed on the cover or spine.
Colophon Printer Technical information such as edition dates, copyrights, typefaces and the name and address of the printer. In modern books usually on the verso of the title page, but in some books placed at the end (see Back matter). Also known as the Edition notice or Copyright page.
Dedication Author A dedication page is a page in a book that precedes the text, in which the author names the person or people for whom he/she has written the book.
Epigraph Author A phrase, quotation, or poem. The epigraph may serve as a preface, as a summary, as a counter-example, or to link the work to a wider literary canon, either to invite comparison, or to enlist a conventional context.
Table of contents Publisher This is a list of chapter headings, and nested subheadings, together with their respective page numbers. This includes all front-matter items listed below, together with chapters in the body matter and back matter. The number of levels of subheadings shown should be limited, so as to keep the contents list short, ideally one page, or possibly a double-page spread. Technical books may include a list of figures and a list of tables.
Foreword Some person other than the author Often, a foreword will tell of some interaction between the writer of the foreword and the story or the writer of the story. A foreword to later editions of a work often explains in what respects that edition differs from previous ones.
Preface Author A preface generally covers the story of how the book came into being, or how the idea for the book was developed. This is often followed by thanks and acknowledgments to people who were helpful to the author during the time of writing.
Acknowledgments Author Often part of the preface, rather than a separate section in its own right, it acknowledges those who contributed to the creation of the book.
Introduction Author A beginning section which states the purpose and goals of the following writing.
Prologue Narrator (or a character in the book) A prologue is an opening to a story that establishes the setting and gives background details, often some earlier story that ties into the main one, and other miscellaneous information. As such, it is generally considered part of the body in modern book organization (cf. Chicago Manual of Style).

Body matter

Kelmscott Press - The Nature of Gothic by John Ruskin (first page)
Initial on the opening page of a book printed by the Kelmscott Press

The structure of a work—and especially of its body matter—is often described hierarchically.

  • Volumes
    A volume is a set of leaves bound together. Thus each work is either a volume, or is divided into volumes.
  • Books and parts
    Single-volume works account for most of the non-academic consumer market in books. A single volume may embody either a part of a book or the whole of a book; in some works, parts encompass multiple books, while in others, books may consist of multiple parts.
  • Chapters and sections
    A chapter or section may be contained within a part or a book. When both chapters and sections are used in the same work, the sections are more often contained within chapters than the reverse.
  • Modules and units
    In some books the chapters are grouped into bigger parts, sometimes called modules. The numbering of the chapters can begin again at the start of every module. In educational books, especially, the chapters are often called units.

The first page of the actual text of a book is the opening page, which often incorporates special design features, such as initials. Arabic numbering starts at this first page. If the text is introduced by a second half title or opens with a part title, the half title or part title counts as page one. As in the front matter, page numbers are omitted on blank pages, and are either omitted or a drop folio is used on the opening page of each part and chapter. On pages containing only illustrations or tables, page numbers are usually omitted, except in the case of a long sequence of figures or tables.[3]

The following are two instructive examples:

  • The Lord of the Rings has three parts (either in one volume each, or in a single volume), with each part containing two books, each containing, in turn, multiple chapters.
  • The Christian Bible (usually bound as a single volume) comprises two "testaments" (which might more typically be described as "parts", and differ in length by a factor of three or four), each containing dozens of books of varying lengths. In turn, each book (except for the shortest) contains multiple chapters, which are traditionally divided (for purposes of citation) into "verses" each containing roughly one independent clause.

Back matter (end matter)

The back matter, also known as end matter, if used, normally consists of one or more of the following components:

Name Voice Purpose
Epilogue The narrator (or a character in the book) This piece of writing at the end of a work of literature or drama is usually used to bring closure to the work.
Extro or Outro The conclusion to a piece of work; this is considered the opposite of the intro. These terms are more commonly used in music.
Afterword The author, or some other real person An afterword generally covers the story of how the book came into being, or of how the idea for the book was developed.
Conclusion Author
Postscript
Appendix or Addendum Author This supplemental addition to a given main work may correct errors, explain inconsistencies or otherwise detail or update the information found in the main work.
Glossary Author The glossary consists of a set of definitions of words of importance to the work. They are normally alphabetized. The entries may consist of places and characters, which is common for longer works of fiction.
Bibliography Author This cites other works consulted when writing the body. It is most common in non-fiction books or research papers.
Index Publisher This list of terms used in the text contains references, often page numbers, to where the terms can be found in the text. Most common in non-fiction books.
Colophon Publisher This brief description may be located at the end of a book or on the verso of the title page. It describes production notes relevant to the edition and may include a printer's mark or logotype.
Postface

Arabic numbering continues for the back matter.

Front cover, spine, and back cover of the dust-jacket

Bookspine
The spine of the book is an important aspect in book design, especially in the cover design. When the books are stacked up or stored in a shelf, the details on the spine is the only visible surface that contains the information about the book. In a book store, it is often the details on the spine that attract the attention first.

The front cover is the front of the book, and is marked appropriately by text or graphics in order to identify it as such (namely as the very beginning of the book). The front cover usually contains at least the title or author, with possibly an appropriate illustration.

On the inside of the cover page, extending to the facing page is the front endpaper sometimes referred as FEP. The free half of the end paper is called a flyleaf. Traditionally, in hand-bound books, the endpaper was just a sheet of blank or ornamented paper physically masking and reinforcing the connection between the cover and the body of the book. In modern publishing it can be either plain, as in many text-oriented books, or variously ornamented and illustrated in books such as picture books, other children's literature, some arts and craft and hobbyist books, novelty/gift-market and coffee table books, and graphic novels. These books have an audience and traditions of their own where the graphic design and immediacy is especially important and publishing tradition and formality are less important.

The spine is the vertical edge of a book as it normally stands on a bookshelf. It is customary for it to have printed text on it. In texts published or printed in the United States and the United Kingdom, the spine text, when vertical, runs from the top to the bottom, such that it is right side up when the book is lying flat with the front cover on top. In books from continental Europe, vertical spine text traditionally runs from the bottom up, though this convention has been changing lately.[4] The spine usually contains all, or some, of four elements (besides decoration, if any), and in the following order: (1) author, editor, or compiler; (2) title; (3) publisher; and (4) publisher logo.

On the inside of the back cover page, extending from the facing page before it, is the endpaper. Its design matches the front endpaper and, in accordance with it, contains either plain paper or pattern, image etc.

The back cover often contains biographical matter about the author or editor, and quotes from other sources praising the book. It may also contain a summary or description of the book

Binding

Books are classified under two categories according to the physical nature of their binding. The designation hardcover (or hardback) refers to books with stiff covers, as opposed to flexible ones. The binding of a hardcover book usually includes boards (often made of paperboard) covered in cloth, leather, or other materials. The binding is usually sewn to the pages using string stitching.

A less expensive binding method is that used for paperback books (sometimes called softback or softcover). Most paperbacks are bound with paper or light cardboard, though other materials (such as plastic) are used. The covers are flexible and usually bound to the pages using glue (perfect binding). Some small paperback books are sub-classified as pocketbooks. These paperbacks are smaller than usual—small enough to barely fit into a pocket (especially the back pocket of one's trousers). However, this capacity to fit into a pocket diminishes with increasing number of pages and increasing thickness of the book. Such a book may still be designated as a pocketbook.

Other items

Some books such as Bibles or dictionaries may have a thumb index to help find material quickly. Gold leaf may also be applied to the edges of the pages, so that when closed, the side, top, and bottom of the book have a golden color. On some books, a design may be printed on the edges, or marbling or a simple colour applied. Some artist's books go even further, by using fore-edge painting. Pop-up elements and fold-out pages may be used to add dimensions to the page in different ways. Children's books commonly incorporate a wide array of design features built into the fabric of the book. Some books for preschoolers include textured fabric, plastic on other materials. Die-cut techniques in the work of Eric Carle are one example. Clear or reflective surfaces, flaps, textiles and scratch-and-sniff are other possible features.

Page spread

Golden section in book design
Page spread with J. A. van de Graaf's construction of classical text area (print space) and margin proportions.[5]

A basic unit in book design is the page spread. The left page (called verso) and right page (called recto) are of the same size and aspect ratio, and are centered on the gutter where they are bound together at the spine.

The design of each individual page, on the other hand, is governed by the canons of page construction.

The possible layout of the sets of letters of the alphabet, or words, on a page is determined by the so-called print space, and is also an element in the design of the page of the book. Clearly, there must be sufficient space, at the spine of the book, if the text is to be visible. On the other hand, the other three margins of the page, which frame the book, are made of the appropriate size for both practical and aesthetic reasons.

Print space

The print space (German Satzspiegel) is a typographic term and determines the effective area on the paper of a book, journal or other press work. The print space is limited by the surrounding borders, or in other words the gutters outside the printed area.

The German term comes originally from hot-metal typesetting: above the desktop was a mirror (German: Spiegel) where the typesetter could read the inverted letters.

See also

Other types of books

References

  1. ^ Tschichold, Jan, The Form of the Book (1991), Hartley & Marks, ISBN 0-88179-116-4
  2. ^ Hendel, Richard, On Book Design, Yale University Press, ISBN 0-300-07570-7
  3. ^ a b c University of Chicago Press. (2003). The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition. ISBN 978-0226104201
  4. ^ Petroski, Henry (1999). The Book on the Bookshelf. Alfred A. Knopf Inc. ISBN 0-375-40649-2.
  5. ^ Van de Graaf, J. A.. Nieuwe berekening voor de vormgeving. (1946)

Further reading

  • Hendel, Richard, On Book Design. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998. ISBN 0-300-07570-7.
  • Hochuli, Jost, and Robin Kinross, Designing Books: Practice and Theory. London: Hyphen Press, 1996. ISBN 0-907259-08-1.
  • Bruno, Michael H., Pocket Pal: The Handy Little Book of Graphic Arts Production. 19th Edition. Memphis, TN: International Paper, 2003. ISBN 0-88362-488-5.
  • Lee, Marshal, Bookmaking: Editing, Design, Production. Third Edition. New York [etc.]: W. W. Norton and Company, 2004. ISBN 0-393-73018-2.
  • Lommen, Mathieu, The Book of Books: 500 Years of Graphic Innovation. London: Thames & Hudson, 2012. ISBN 0-500-51591-3.
  • University of Chicago Press,The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th ed. Chicago, Ill.: University of Chicago Press, 2003. ISBN 0-226-10403-6 (hardcover): ISBN 0-226-10405-2 (hardcover with CD-ROM): ISBN 0-226-10404-4 (CD-ROM).
  • University of Chicago Press, The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th ed., Online ed. (Chicago: Released September 29.)

External links

Afterword

An afterword is a literary device that is often found at the end of a piece of literature. It generally covers the story of how the book came into being, or of how the idea for the book was developed.

An afterword may be written by someone other than the author of the book to provide enriching comment, such as discussing the work's historical or cultural context (especially if the work is being reissued many years after its original publication).

Bibliography

Bibliography (from Greek βιβλίον biblion, "book" and -γραφία -graphia, "writing"), as a discipline, is traditionally the academic study of books as physical, cultural objects; in this sense, it is also known as bibliology (from Greek -λογία, -logia). Carter and Barker (2010) describe bibliography as a twofold scholarly discipline—the organized listing of books (enumerative bibliography) and the systematic description of books as objects (descriptive bibliography).

Blurb

A blurb is a short promotional piece accompanying a piece of creative work. It may be written by the author or publisher or quote praise from others. Blurbs were originally printed on the back or rear dust-jacket of a book, and are now found on home video cases, web portals, and news websites. A blurb may introduce a newspaper or magazine feature story.

Book cover

A book cover is any protective covering used to bind together the pages of a book. Beyond the familiar distinction between hardcovers and paperbacks, there are further alternatives and additions, such as dust jackets, ring-binding, and older forms such as the nineteenth-century "paper-boards" and the traditional types of hand-binding. The term "Bookcover" is often used for a book cover image in library management software. This article is concerned with modern mechanically produced covers.

Book frontispiece

A frontispiece in books is a decorative or informative illustration facing a book's title page—on the left-hand, or verso, page opposite the right-hand, or recto, page. While some books depict thematic elements, other books feature the author's portrait as the frontispiece. In medieval illuminated manuscripts, a presentation miniature showing the book or text being presented (by whom and to whom varies) was often used as a frontispiece.

Book illustration

The illustration of manuscript books was well established in ancient times, and the tradition of the illuminated manuscript thrived in the West until the invention of printing. Other parts of the world had comparable traditions, such as the Persian miniature. Modern book illustration comes from the 15th-century woodcut illustrations that were fairly rapidly included in early printed books, and later block books. Other techniques such as engraving, etching, lithography and various kinds of colour printing were to expand the possibilities and were exploited by such masters as Daumier, Doré or Gavarni.

Canons of page construction

The canons of page construction are historical reconstructions, based on careful measurement of extant books and what is known of the mathematics and engineering methods of the time, of manuscript-framework methods that may have been used in Medieval- or Renaissance-era book design to divide a page into pleasing proportions. Since their popularization in the 20th century, these canons have influenced modern-day book design in the ways that page proportions, margins and type areas (print spaces) of books are constructed.

The notion of canons, or laws of form, of book page construction was popularized by Jan Tschichold in the mid to late twentieth century, based on the work of J. A. van de Graaf, Raúl M. Rosarivo, Hans Kayser, and others. Tschichold wrote, “Though largely forgotten today, methods and rules upon which it is impossible to improve have been developed for centuries. To produce perfect books these rules have to be brought to life and applied.” Kayser's 1946 Ein harmonikaler Teilungskanon had earlier used the term canon in this context.

Typographers and book designers are influenced by these principles to this day in page layout, with variations related to the availability of standardized paper sizes, and the diverse types of commercially printed books.

Colophon (publishing)

In publishing, a colophon () is a brief statement containing information about the publication of a book such as the place of publication, the publisher, and the date of publication. A colophon may also be emblematic or pictorial in nature. Colophons were formerly printed at the ends of books, but in modern works they are usually located at the verso of the title-leaf.

Dust jacket

The dust jacket (sometimes book jacket, dust wrapper or dust cover) of a book is the detachable outer cover, usually made of paper and printed with text and illustrations. This outer cover has folded flaps that hold it to the front and back book covers. Often the back panel or flaps are printed with biographical information about the author, a summary of the book from the publisher (known as a blurb) or critical praise from celebrities or authorities in the book's subject area. In addition to its promotional role, the dust jacket protects the book covers from damage. However, since it is itself relatively fragile, and since dust jackets have practical, aesthetic and sometimes financial value, the jacket may in turn be wrapped in another jacket, usually transparent, especially if the book is a library volume.

Epigraph (literature)

In literature, an epigraph is a phrase, quotation, or poem that is set at the beginning of a document or component. The epigraph may serve as a preface, as a summary, as a counter-example, or to link the work to a wider literary canon, either to invite comparison or to enlist a conventional context.In a book, it is part of the front matter.

Epilogue

An epilogue or epilog (from Greek ἐπίλογος epílogos, "conclusion" from ἐπί epi, "in addition" and λόγος logos, "word") is a piece of writing at the end of a work of literature, usually used to bring closure to the work. It is presented from the perspective of within the story. When the author steps in and speaks directly to the reader, that is more properly considered an afterword. The opposite is a prologue—a piece of writing at the beginning of a work of literature or drama, usually used to open the story and capture interest. Some genres, for example television programs and video games, call the epilog an "outro" patterned on the use of "intro" for "introduction".

Foreword

A foreword is a (usually short) piece of writing sometimes placed at the beginning of a book or other piece of literature. Typically written by someone other than the primary author of the work, it often tells of some interaction between the writer of the foreword and the book's primary author or the story the book tells. Later editions of a book sometimes have a new foreword prepended (appearing before an older foreword if there was one), which might explain in what respects that edition differs from previous ones.

When written by the author, the foreword may cover the story of how the book came into being or how the idea for the book was developed, and may include thanks and acknowledgments to people who were helpful to the author during the time of writing. Unlike a preface, a foreword is always signed.

Information essential to the main text is generally placed in a set of explanatory notes, or perhaps in an introduction, rather than in the foreword or preface.

The pages containing the foreword and preface (and other front matter) are typically not numbered as part of the main work, which usually uses Arabic numerals. If the front matter is paginated, it uses lowercase Roman numerals. If there is both a foreword and a preface, the foreword appears first; both appear before the introduction, which may be paginated either with the front matter or the main text.

The word foreword was first used around the mid-17th century, originally as a term in philology. It was possibly a calque of German Vorwort, itself a calque of Latin praefatio.

Glossary

A glossary, also known as a vocabulary or clavis, is an alphabetical list of terms in a particular domain of knowledge with the definitions for those terms. Traditionally, a glossary appears at the end of a book and includes terms within that book that are either newly introduced, uncommon, or specialized. While glossaries are most commonly associated with non-fiction books, in some cases, fiction novels may come with a glossary for unfamiliar terms.

A bilingual glossary is a list of terms in one language defined in a second language or glossed by synonyms (or at least near-synonyms) in another language.

In a general sense, a glossary contains explanations of concepts relevant to a certain field of study or action. In this sense, the term is related to the notion of ontology. Automatic methods have been also provided that transform a glossary into an ontology or a computational lexicon.

Introduction (writing)

In an essay, article, or book, an introduction (also known as a prolegomenon) is a beginning section which states the purpose and goals of the following writing. This is generally followed by the body and conclusion.

The introduction typically describes the scope of the document and gives the brief explanation or summary of the document. It may also explain certain elements that are important to the essay if explanations are not part of the main text. The readers can have an idea about the following text before they actually start reading it.

ln technical writing, the introduction typically includes one or more standard subsections: abstract or summary, preface, acknowledgments, and foreword. Alternatively, the section labeled introduction itself may be a brief section found side-by-side with abstract, foreword, etc. (rather than containing them). In this case the set of sections that come before the body of the book are known as the front matter. When the book is divided into numbered chapters, by convention the introduction and any other front-matter sections are unnumbered and precede chapter 1.

Keeping the concept of the introduction the same, different documents have different styles to introduce the written text. For example, the introduction of a Functional Specification consists of information that the whole document is yet to explain. If a Userguide is written, the introduction is about the product. In a report, the introduction gives a summary about the report contents.

Marginalia

Marginalia (or apostils) are marks made in the margins of a book or other document. They may be scribbles, comments, glosses (annotations), critiques, doodles, or illuminations.

Postscript

A postscript (P.S.) is an afterthought, thought that's occurring after the letter has been written and signed. The term comes from the Latin post scriptum, an expression meaning "written after" (which may be interpreted in the sense of "that which comes after the writing").A postscript may be a sentence, a paragraph, or occasionally many paragraphs added, often hastily and incidentally, after the signature of a letter or (sometimes) the main body of an essay or book. In a book or essay, a more carefully composed addition (e.g., for a second edition) is called an afterword. The word "postscript" has, poetically, been used to refer to any sort of addendum to some main work, even if it is not attached to a main work, as in Søren Kierkegaard's book titled Concluding Unscientific Postscript.

Sometimes, when additional points are made after the first postscript, abbreviations such as PSS (post-super-scriptum), PPS (postquam-post-scriptum or post-post-scriptum) and PPPS (post-post-post-scriptum), and so on, ad infinitum are used, though only PPS has somewhat common usage.

Preface

A preface () or proem () is an introduction to a book or other literary work written by the work's author. An introductory essay written by a different person is a foreword and precedes an author's preface. The preface often closes with acknowledgments of those who assisted in the literary work.

A preface generally covers the story of how the book came into being, or how the idea for the book was developed; this is often followed by thanks and acknowledgments to people who were helpful to the author during the time of writing.

A preface is usually signed (and the date and place of writing often follow the typeset signature); a foreword by another person is always signed. Information essential to the main text is generally placed in a set of explanatory notes, or perhaps in an "Introduction" that may be paginated with Arabic numerals, rather than in the preface. The term preface can also mean any preliminary or introductory statement. It is sometimes abbreviated pref.

Preface comes from the Latin, meaning either "spoken before" (prae and fatia) or "made before" (prae + factum). While the former source of the word could have preface meaning the same as prologue, the latter strongly implies an introduction written before the body of the book. With this meaning of stated intention, British publishing up to at least the middle of the twentieth century distinguished between preface and introduction.

Table of contents

A table of contents, usually headed simply Contents and abbreviated informally as TOC, is a list, usually found on a page before the start of a written work, of its chapter or section titles or brief descriptions with their commencing page numbers.

Title page

The title page of a book, thesis or other written work is the page at or near the front which displays its title, subtitle, author, publisher, and edition. (A half title, by contrast, displays only the title of a work.)

Book design
General page layout and typography choices
Front and back covers
Endpapers
Front matter
Body matter, which may include:
Back matter
Other elements
The book publishing process
Copy preparation
Prepress
Book production
Page
Paragraph
Character
Classifications
Punctuation
Typesetting
Typographic units
Digital typography
Related

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.