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, September 14, 2017

On becoming "well-read"

Education, Native Americans, theology, and anthropology ... the list goes on. It's safe to say that I've read a lot of very different books since starting my indexing business, and my varied list of titles continues to grow. One benefit to being a freelance book indexer (and there are several!) is that I am 'forced' to read books that I probably would not choose to read on my own, and I oftentimes have to research the topics I read about. This is a good thing! I think of it as becoming more "well-read."

Because I read every book that I index, I am continually exposed to new ideas and perspectives. My mind is challenged while searching for reoccurring topics and themes within any given book, and it continues to stretch and grow while researching the connections I've made.

I research everything--names, dates, places, proper wording, and the inter-connectedness of it all. I use a variety of tools for my research because I want to accurately reflect the author's intended message. Some of my favorite tools include the  Library of Congress authority files, library databases, and online search engines.

The bottom line here is that I expand my mind in many ways every time I sit down to index a new book, and I am grateful to all of the authors who have helped me become more "well-read."