Anyone can create an index, right? Not exactly. It is true that anyone with the right software can create a concordance for a book. However, this does not mean that anyone can or should create an index for your publication.

Here's why. A professionally created, custom-made index offers your readers more than a concordance, which is only an alphabetized list of words at the end of a book. The custom-made index is an intuitive map for your readers; it helps readers navigate through your book quickly and efficiently. This is because a professional indexer anticipates the needs of your readers in a way that concordance generating software simply cannot do.

Trust a professional indexer. After reading your book, I can create a custom-made index to your specifications with my professional indexing software. This index will give your book even greater appeal in today’s increasingly competitive marketplace. The casual reader and serious researcher alike will return to your book again and again because it contains meaningful information that is easy to locate in its custom-made index.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Ebooks and Indexes

Are you curious to know why many ebooks have no indexes? Steve Ingle, president of WordCo indexing services, gives his opinion in  in an interesting article entitled, "Indexes in Ebooks." This article was originally shared via Facebook by both American Society for Indexing and Society of Indexers, and it is the first installment of a three-part series.

At the beginning of his article, Ingle cites several of the expected reasons publishers give for creating ebooks without indexes. Some of these reasons include: 1.) page numbers do not show up in digitized books; 2.) readers can utilize an ebook's search feature instead; 3.) technological issues (i.e. various devices and platforms format ebooks differently).

These reasons aside, Ingle further speculates that what it really comes down to is production costs and time. Money and time are hard to come by in any business, and publishing companies are no exception. Ingle offers two cost and time effective solutions to the problem of creating ebooks without indexes. They are: 1.) offer a "dead," non-hyperlinked index with the ebook; 2.) create a hyperlinked index, wherein the ebook file contains pagemarkers that readers can touch or click, allowing them to navigate the book easily.

Of these two solutions, the second is the more preferable option. Ingle ends his article with the promise of exploring this idea in the second installment of his three-part series, "Indexes in Ebooks."

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