Make Your Books Beautiful

Make Your Books Beautiful

Vellum - Create Beautiful Books

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When completely done editing, it is time to make sure that I have the metadata correct for the book and enter it on what is called the front matter for the book.

In Scrivener that is very easy. You plug it in and it puts it where it should go, usually on the Copyright page at the beginning of the book.

Front Matter and Back Matter

This is also when I make sure all back matter is complete and correct as well. Back matter is as it sounds, at the back of the book and usually includes About The Author and references to upcoming books, etc.

Have someone proof that for you as well. Face it - we just cannot proof our own work no matter how simple and short. We see it as we know it should read.

Then when all the i’s are dotted and all the t’s crossed, I export as a MSWord document. Yes, you read that right. This diehard MAC user exports as a MSWord doc.

That is because the next program I use requires that you import into it as a MSWord doc. The irony that the program is a MAC only program is not lost on me. But, hey what do I know! LOL!!

So, I export the manuscript complete with front and back matter to a .doc. Then it is time to make it all beautiful.


My third program in the trinity of stellar writing tools is Vellum. I import the .doc into Vellum and it will automatically detect the chapters and format the chapter page. It will also detect the copyright page and other front and back matter.

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If for some reason it does not detect a section or page correctly it is easy to rectify in the program.

You can also make any last minute edits and choose the layout of how you want your chapter headings to look. You can add cute little graphic dividers as well. If you want to add pictures at that point you can do that as well.

Even Does Illustrations

I do not illustrate my novels, so I do not have experience in doing that. I have however put a QR code in the back matter before and it worked beautifully.

Make sure you set your type to the size you want. This will change the page numbering on your book. When you have tweaked and re-tweaked until you are convinced you have everything just right, it is time to export it to publication format.

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Let me encourage you to get it to where you think you want it and then export it so you can look at it the way it was formatted. Often on the screen is not the way it actually looks on paper in a book.

Give It A Look

You will need to think about the print book size you want to publish. There are tons of sizes. All my print books are generated in a 6 x 9 inch format. That includes my soft cover books as well. Soft cover is different from the trade paperbacks you might be familiar with.

You can export all types at once. You can do multiple eBook formats and print as well or you have the option to do only one type of format.

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With a print book it is fixed and static. With an ebook, it will be fluid and can be manipulated by the viewer to see fonts larger or smaller as needed.

Having Vellum detect the chapters is really a help because rather that give a static page number it creates a link to that chapter that doesn’t change.  Awesome, since the page number is fluid.

All Types of Book Formats

Each book format must have an ISBN number. My book The Blood has 4 ISBN numbers because it is formatted in 4 different formats.

I now put all ISBN numbers for that book on my Copyright page, so regardless of what exported file type it ends up as, the ISBN will be there for that particular format. It just makes it easier on me.

If you do not put all ISBN numbers on there, then you should export to each format individually, changing the ISBN number each time on the Copyright page.

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Even though my hard copies and soft covers are the same size and I use the same export for both, they have separate ISBN numbers. And yet, I would often forget to change or get them mixed up when uploading. So, for me I just put them all on everything.

Upload Your Cover

Also, in Vellum you should upload your eBook cover. When it exports as an ebook the cover will already be with it. Most systems you will upload your ebook to will also have you upload the cover individually, but having it in Vellum will give you a graphic for your book so it is easily distinguishable for you.

When Vellum exports the ebooks, you will have a folder for Apple Books, Generic EPUB, Google Play, Kindle, Kobo, and Nook. If you are individually uploading to each site you would use the format for that site. But hang with me, I have a much better way.

The print folder has the manuscript as a PDF. You will upload to any print company in that format.

Vellum makes formatting any book a breeze and they look beautiful and professional every single time. 

You can buy Vellum Here (I get a small affiliate reimbursement).

I want to encourage you to leave me any comments below. They are so encouraging and motivating to me. 


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