Re: Small Publication

Subject: Re: Small Publication
From: "Karen F." <AnnaQai -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 1997 22:35:48 -0500

Lisa Kemp said>>I am going to produce a stand-alone manual that will be
approximately 65 pages (34 two-sided pages). ...I am looking for suggestions
for how to have this smaller manual printed and still look very

Things to consider are: how much you're willing to spend, how many copies
you'll print, and the binding. Secondary is your audience and how you
anticipate they will use the manual. Judicious use of color and nice paper
always gives a professional look, but can quickly add to production cost.

If you have a big budget and want many copies, you could go the saddle-stitch
routine, with maybe even glossy paper and one or more extra colors besides
black and white. I think that format looks nice on booklets with smaller
pages. It's more attractive and people are more likely to open it, a novel
concept. I worked at a place where we used this with a highly technical
audience and people liked it. We even punched some holes in the edge, so it
could be slipped into a three-ring binder. One objection I've heard to this
format is that the user won't be able to find it when it's sitting on a
bookshelf (because it's so thin and doesn't have a wide spine). A solution
one person showed me is making the outside back page oversized, fold it twice
to wrap it around the front and creates a pseudo-spine for a title.

If you're going with fewer copies, you might have to throw out the
saddle-stitching. Then your binding choices are 3-ring binder, wire-o, that
cheesy plastic binding ( sorry, I forgot it's real name, but it fits into
long slots in the paper and you can pull it loose with your fingers), or
staples. Three-ring binders are nice if you have the budget and you can put
some colors on the cover sheet and spine. Some users like this because it's
easier to remove pages they want to photocopy. Also, if it fits your
situation, later on you can send bulletins or update documents on pre-punched
paper and maybe the user will insert them in the same binder.

Wire-o binding is cheaper but it can still look nice if the cover pages are
heavier than the inside. You can also put color on the cover pages.

The cheapest and cheesiest is that plastic stuff and staples. I don't think
you want to consider either of those alternatives.

Karen Felker
AnnaQai -at- aol -dot- com

"Expecting life to treat you well because you are a good person is like
expecting an angry bull not to charge because you are a vegetarian." Shari R.

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