Monday, 13 February 2012

Dancing Chapters

one finalised component of the front cover

The preparations for publishing The Boy with Two Heads have fallen into three distinct sections: the cover, the text, and the prelims/endmatter. All three progressed today at our Trifolium production meeting.

Connie and I worked on the layout of the pages of text. Making the space consistent between the end of one chapter and the beginning of the next sounds quite straight forward. However, the built-in formatting means that no paragraph of three lines or less can be split between two pages. Most of my paragraphs are short, to help the story move along faster. So when we introduced the spaces above the Chapter Headings the text began dancing around all over the place. We got the giggles in a despairing sort of way, but sorted it in the end. I wrote extra dialogue in a few places to push the Chapter Heading onto the next page. But mostly I made the text above the Heading shorter (this is a very good intellectual exercise!) to raise it towards the middle of the page.

one component of the back cover

Now was the time to review the names of the chapters. We agreed that single words would be best where possible, so I had a lot of fun adding such titles as ‘rupture’, ‘curse’,  ‘secrets’, ‘oracle’, and some more mundane ones, such as ‘home, ‘uncles’, and ‘work’.

Meanwhile, Kate sorted the last details of the cover before she gets the template. We know the exact number of pages at last, so the template can be ordered to the right size. 

one of the three maps
from The Boy with Two Heads
She also began on the maps. I can hardly believe how good my sketch maps look after her clean-up and addition of neat lettering and frames round the keys.


  1. Oh, I think bring your chp headings further down the page too. I noticed this in Moon. It does look better. Also leave a blank page between the beginning characters , maps, note etc and where the novel begins. I think Chp headings should not be placed top of page. If you look at most books, they don't. C

  2. I think we have evolved a unique style for this book. See what you think!