Common mistakes in manuscripts
Formal and technical mistakes in manuscript usualy do not prevent it to be published as a book. However, publishing it usually takes longer as it is somewhat more difficult for the copy-editors and graphic designers to process it. Some typical mistakes (mostly easy to avod) are listed here.
Avoid "typewriter" mistakes
- Please, do not type Enter at the end of each line ("typewriter style"), only at the end of the paragraph.
- Avoid typing "small L" instead of numeral 1 (one) and "caps O" instead of 0 (zero)
- Please, use other highlighting style than underlined
- Unless you are writing acronyms, do not use "hard" caps (i.e. with capslock on). If you want to create a caps-style title, write it as usual, then choose it (with shift + arrow or with the mouse) and type ctrl+shift+A in MS Word. The typography in the book will be probably different and everything written in hard capitals we must semi-manually correct - although the MS Word has an utility for changing caps to small letters, you have to do this with every single title
- Book title too long is a typical mistake in manuscripts of authors having published dozens of journal papers. The title ought to be short and impressive - let all other information for the subtitle
- Title sounding too general or identical with some well known title: unless you are writing "Harrison", better avoid naming the book "Principles of internal medicine"
- Avoid using abbreviations and acronyms in the title (with notorious exceptions like AIDS, ECG, ICU etc.)
The Foreword and the Introduction
- Avoid confusing the foreword and introduction, the former explaining the subject of the book, the latter the book proper and its structure
- Having both foreword and preface, avoid putting the latter before the former
- Do not use the heading as the beginning (the first words) of the first sentence of the paragraph
- Avoid using abbreviations and acronyms in the headings - the recommendation is not so strict as with the book title (see above)
... to be cont'd