Friday, January 6, 2012

The Price of Knowledge

I’ve been working on formatting recently.  I’d like to, at the very least, know how to properly format my book before I finish it.  Not surprisingly, it can turn into a near obsession for me if I don’t rein myself in. 
I've been seeking information on things like, how wide my margins should be, how the pages should be numbered, how much space should be between the header/footer and my body of text and of course font and page size (not even scratching the surface I’m sure).  So, in looking for a quick fix, I scoured the all mighty Google for articles giving that information to me with no cost associated with its acquisition (I'm cheap, what can I say!).  The problem, no one actually gives you the measurements!  Well, that’s not exactly true, because I did find something on the Createspace website that gives all of the information I needed (the basic info that is).  What I did find interesting is there are a slew of businesses built solely to help people format their books!
What?  That’s not shocking to you?  I guess you’re right, it shouldn’t be to me either.  Yet, I’m often shocked at the way some information is withheld solely for the purpose of creating revenue for someone else.  Even with this knowledge, it’ll probably be in my best interest to at least consult with someone to aid my quest to make a very pleasing to read book.  I don't mind shelling out cash for knowledge.
One of my favorite blogs is The Book Designer.  The gentleman that runs the site is clearly a master of his craft, hence why I love his blog.  He’s provided so much information on the inner working of an industry I was completely unaware of. In fact, he offers so much information that you’d wonder if he’s aware that people pay for the information he hands out completely free.
That’s part of the point isn’t it?  Some information should be free.  Dispensing it for free doesn’t diminish his expertise at all as he’s still sought after.  Personally, I believe such freedom of information that’s often hidden from the masses does not harm businesses such as his.  In my opinion, it increases the awareness of people to the need of someone like him and his expertise.
More information doesn’t make us more separate, it causes us to realize just how connected we are.  That’s what I’m taking from this experience.