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  1. Brad Colin
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    Brad Colin New Member

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    Creating an index for my book

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Brad Colin, Mar 15, 2010.

    I have mostly finished writing my first book, but i have been wondering if it was important to create an index for it. I see all books having an index, but i don't know yet how to create it. Is there any kind of software to do this ?
     
  2. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Are you self-publishing it?

    Because if not, I'd imagine that would be sorted by your publisher.
     
  3. Brad Colin
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    Brad Colin New Member

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    It is a big research that i will only discuss with my colleagues. I may also publish it as a soft copy on the Internet. So 'Yes' i will publish it myself.
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If it's a nonfiction book for which it makes sense to index topics, you'll create the index. Without knowing the book's nature, there is no way for us to give a meaningful answer.

    Obviously, it it's self-published, you'll do everything else as well, including market research, promotion and advertising, legal considerations, typesetting, figures and tables and layout, negotiating contracts, etc. If that sounds daunting, it should!

    But if you choose to concentrate on the writing, and search for a publisher to handle all the other nasty but necessary aspects of publishing, you'll need to check with each prospective publisher for submission guidelines.

    For fiction, the standard submission format is not very amenable to adding an index. But adding an index for a nonfiction work should generally NOT be done by a purely automatic process. The author needs to determine what are significant keywords and phrases, and filter out the references that are completely insignificant. For instance, if I wrote a textbook on Java application development, an index entry on reflection should only include the definition and discussions about its relevance, not to every mention of the word throughout the text.

    No software tool can do a good job of making those decisions. Ideally, you should be making that decision as your write/revise the book, not as an afterthought.
     
  5. Brad Colin
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    Brad Colin New Member

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    The book is about physics ... It has a lot of expressions. Looking for a publisher won't be easy for me in the current stage.

    You are talking about a lot of steps i have to follow ... That looks hard :eek: but i think i want to pass through this. I like new experiments.

    You are right about making the index manually, i have read some posts advising this ... But after some googling i found some tools that may help me, at least eases my work. There is a tool called "Textract" but it is so complicated and i couldn't deal with it. I found another tool called "pdf index generator", it is much simpler. It won't do the whole job, but at least it will help fasten it. It deals with pdf files which is what i want my book to appear.

    I am still trying things out and i will try to find the best solution.
     

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