1. Jen Heaton

    Jen Heaton New Member

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    Can someone please give me some advice?

    Discussion in 'Non-Fiction' started by Jen Heaton, Dec 3, 2021.

    Hello,
    I am new here so forgive me if I am posting in the wrong area.
    I have been creating a Nail Design Workbook that is also an educational resource. I see all over that there are many sample templates for those writing a novel, although I cannot find any resources for creating a textbook or workbook.
    Do any of you possibly have a good website or the like that can help me to plan out my ideas? Certain chapters will be for art tutorials, others for general nail technology definitions...etc.
    Thank you for taking the time out of your day to help me out.
    Jen
     
  2. Catriona Grace

    Catriona Grace Dog mom Contributor

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    I don't know of any tutorials, but I've written and published two textbooks, including one on design for needlework. If you think it might be relevant, I can tell you in general how I went about planning and organizing them.

    Welcome to the forum, by the way. My husband grew up in NoDak, ja, you bethcha.
     
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  3. SapereAude

    SapereAude Contributor Contributor

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    Apple Pages (their word processing / desktop publishing program) is available on-line, for free. They offer a number of templates, including templates for guide books, training books, and cook books. One of those might be suitable, or could be used as a starting point for customizing.

    https://www.icloud.com/pages/create?parentItemId=documents&zone=com.apple.Pages

    Initially, you will need to create an account if you don't already have one.

    Also: https://www.template.net/editable/workbook
     
  4. ABeaujolais

    ABeaujolais Member

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    In my experience using an existing template or outline will result in your work looking just like all the other cookie cutter presentations out there.

    I spent a career researching and writing about technical issues. One of the early realities I discovered was that most of the research material, especially in professional publications, was terribly written. Don't sell yourself short. If you create your own presentation you'll most likely produce material that is superior to a standard boilerplate.

    Resumes are a good example of the point I'm trying to make. I reviewed lots of them over the years. Fully half of the resumes I reviewed used the exact same format, obviously something from a free website somewhere. Those all looked exactly the same, and got instant negative points for lack of creativity. It's great to research and get ideas from different formats, but your finished product will be better if it's your own creation. (By the way, I always recommend hiring a professional graphic artist to produce a resume. The result will be unique and elegant).

    I'm sure you have lots of outlines and other work papers from creating the workbook. You're in the best position to create the presentation. Focus on your audience, focus on you audience, and focus on your audience. Try to put yourself in the mind of your readers. Remember if they're buying your book they want to gain knowledge from your presentation. It's not a matter of talking down to them, it's a matter of anticipating their questions and providing them useful information they're ready to absorb. Especially in a narrowly focused field like nail design, you're the best person to decide how to feed that information.
     
  5. SapereAude

    SapereAude Contributor Contributor

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    Respectfully, I have to disagree. I have also spent a large portion of my career in technical writing and editing, but my education was in graphic arts and design (with a minor in English, including advanced expository writing). The OP is asking about creating a book on nail design, which is certain to include a number of images, and text about those images. Unlike resumes, I doubt there are all that many books out there about nail design. I'm pretty certain there aren't any templates for books about nail design, so any template borrowed from some other teaching book or cook book will have to be adapted. But you have to start somewhere. Unless the OP is an experienced book designer as well as a nail artist, the reality is that creating her own "presentation" will probably be a disaster.

    If she knew enough to design her own book, she most likely wouldn't have posted here asking for help. Book design is a field unto itself. You can't just jump in and expect to create something better than templates that have been created by professional book designers.
     
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  6. ABeaujolais

    ABeaujolais Member

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    I appreciate your perspective. I guess a point of disagreement would be to assume that creating her own presentation would be a disaster. In my analogy about a resume, I gave the opinion that people should always hire a professional designer to help them lay it out. If the OP is a situation where the writer doesn't have the means or desire to hire professional help, I'd fall on the side of the person doing the work themselves. I guess the bottom line is I'd look at using a standardized template, especially a free one, as accepting "OK" as a result, rather than going for an excellent result. With some research and work, I'd bet on the writer doing a better job than a template.

    Am I saying that using a template is lazy? Maybe. It depends on the standards.
     

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