Monday, 10 December 2012

The Test Book arrives!

The test book arrived on Friday morning. What with my birthday and other matters, I haven't been able to get a post together till now.

First, the positive. I'm really satisfied with how the cover design has turned out. The way it looks on the book itself, the contrast between the spine and the front and back. The effect is polished and professional.A slight adjustment needs to be made to correct for a small slice that has been taken off of the right hand edge of the front cover (and possibly the left edge of the back cover, it is difficult to tell.) I'm not sure exactly what went wrong (it can't be a straightforward sizing problem as the spine is placed perfectly), but I suspect I forgot to account for bleeds.

Speaking of bleeds, the most obvious problem is that a huge proportion of the bleeds inside the book are wrong. Unwanted white space is visible on more than half of the pages. Bleeds on the outside margin seem to  be wrong on a distinct majority of the pages, perhaps implying a problem with one of the settings in InDesign. Bleeds on the the top and bottom margin are much less common and less regular, perhaps implying more of a placement problem with the elements on those particular pages. Without looking, I suspect that one likely source of the problem might have been some error I made whilst converting instructions in imperial measurements into decimal. I plan to spend (quite possibly) a considerable portion of time and brain energy tomorrow trying to figure it out
One major problem that I should have realized much earlier, as it is a fact of book design I am definitely acquianted with, is that the centre margins in all parts of Vectis need to be made wider than the outside margins in order to make the pages appear even to the eye when bound in codex form. I have also confirmed that the previous layout of text in the Spring section looked clunky. I have already changed it, though I need to adapt it to the new borders.

Things like this last problem are key to why I haven't felt I have much time to work on the blog. One of my major problems throughout this project is that I have consistently underestimated how long many things are going to take. The major reason for this is because when you change something in a book it can often necessitate you changing a lot of other things as well, potentially the whole book. As more and more things come into place, the amount of time and effort required to change things increases dramatically. If I was working on the book again, I would not, for example, have put the page numbers in until last.

In order to correct for the sparseness of the blog I am planning, once the book is more finished (probably in the new year) to go back and insert some key posts that I have not yet had time to make or finished into the chronological order of the blog. This will make it, I feel, a more satisfying final reading experience.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Simon,
    Probably late in the day but the Library has signed up to software tutorials. InDesign tips are quite useful as well as the complete tutorial. Look forward to seeing/reading/handling the book. I think covers are major, it sets up the reader/viewer and can be a surprise when the content doesn't match the cover. It can be likened to a costume.