Chris A. Baird | March 10, 2023
Book Templates For Self Publishing

Are you struggling to format your book? Learn about some of the best book templates for self publishing today.

So, the thing is you often are trying to save time and you're thinking you can hire somebody else when you're dealing with your book to do all of the different tasks necessary. But that would be a huge mistake especially when it comes to the area of book formatting.

The easiest way to format your book properly is to use a book template. That's why we're going to be discussing book templates for self publishing. So, what's a book template? Well, to make it simple for you, a book template breaks down what you're going to do with your book.

It breaks down how your book is going to end up looking into a very simple format. So that you can simply put the content of your book into it, into this framework of sorts. And then, when we publish the book into different formats, it's going to go from there.

It makes the whole process so much easier. One of the main reasons we need to do this is because if you're going to upload your book onto different platforms, it has to be perfect when it comes to the format.

In addition, your readers are going to complain if things are lopsided. Or the way the text looks is off, the spacing, the fonts you're using, maybe even just the entire book is off. You'll end up annoying your target readers when they're going through the book.

They're going to complain about it. I remember even just reading recently about one of the best sellers in one of the areas on Amazon. I’ve read this particular book and they didn't even manage to get the centering correct. It was so poorly done on that. 

A manuscript template

The best way to avoid a poorly formatted book is by using a book template. Now, there are a couple of different types we're going to discuss. One of them is a manuscript template. Now, the manuscript template is pre-designed.

Then, what we're going to do is we're going to take our text and we're going to stick the body of our text into it with our manuscript. It already establishes a lot of the basics that we're going to have in terms of how the font and things are looking inside the book itself.

So, this is a fantastic place to start with the main contents of our books. We're just simply putting it in there. It's already got the font and all of these things are already pre-decided.

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You can change your mind easily. But there are just so many decisions that have to be made in much of the software that we're using for our books. 

A book layout template

The next thing is a book layout template. Now, this is a higher level. We're no longer talking about the individual like where you just paste the book in there but in terms of where the pictures go and some of the margins.

How is the book fitting together as a whole? As opposed to in the different sections of the book more than just looking at the manuscript itself. So, that gives you another way of looking at the entire thing here. 

Manuscript Formatting vs. Interior Layout Formatting

So, manuscript formatting vs. interior layout formatting. What exactly is the difference between these two? 

Manuscript Formatting

Well, it's very simple. Manuscript formatting is the formatting of the text itself, usually done by the author or editor.

We're ensuring that the manuscript is properly formatted. This is probably one of the ones that most readers complain about if the manuscript formatting is off. 

Interior Layout Formatting

The other type is the interior layout formatting and this is the design and layout of the book's pages. It includes elements like the placement of text, images, and headings. This is again, the top-level view of the book itself, right?

So, if you're doing interior layout formatting, we're trying to make sure that the insides of this book, the sections, and all of this are fitting together. In a way that is done in a stylistic way that your readers are going to enjoy.

Though the formatting layout is going to be more annoying to them. Since that's where they're spending most of their time looking at; the text itself. If the spacing and fonts and all of these things are off, it's going to be very distracting.

It is going to impact the reviews that you're going to be getting on this book. Your sales will take decline. 

Contents of a Book Template – For Nonfiction & Fiction

Contents of a book template - for nonfiction and fiction, what exactly is the difference when we're dealing with these templates for fiction versus nonfiction?

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Fiction Book Templates

The fiction book templates, it's going to be able to support the structure and content of a narrative story. After all, it's fiction, right? So, it's going to have to that flow.

One of the ways I always suggest is looking to see what the top fiction authors in your exact genre are doing. Let's look at the particular layout that they're doing.

This is going to include things like chapter headings, scene breaks, character descriptions, and dialogue formatting. All of this is very important. When they're reading, you don't want it all, just this wall of text where everything's all shoved together.

Everything is very difficult to read. We want to make sure it has a nice flow that's also in alignment with what they would expect it to be for a fiction book. 

Nonfiction Book Templates

Then, let’s go to nonfiction book templates. These are a bit different because these are going to involve the exact headings, subheadings, and bulleted numbered lists that we're going to have within our book. This isn't a part of fiction, so it's a very different type of template.

It will have tables, and we're going to have figures in a nonfiction book template. But they may even include sections for prefaces, introductions, summaries, and conclusions. Fiction books are not going to have some sort of summary or conclusion for the most part, right?

So, you might be thinking that you would just use the same template for both. But you'd be mistaken because these two different templates differ by quite a bit. 

Where to Find the Best Book Templates Online

Where to find the best book templates online? Where should we go and look as we're trying to figure out where to get these templates?

I'm telling you, there are several places you can go, one of them is Microsoft Office. If you have an Office 365 membership subscription, you're going to able to go in there and get some of the book templates that they have for free. But you have to have that subscription.

The second place is Canva which is outstanding when it comes to covers and some interiors. I'm not talking about the deep level interior of building the book. But Canva is a fantastic place definitely for the covers, it's worth checking out.

The next is my own Book Formatting Made Easy Course. I have a specific Jutoh template that gives you the ability to do all of the different types of design that I was discussing before. This template gives you the ability to just take your text, stick it in there, and all of the decisions have already been made. 

Then, once you look at it, we can make adjustments after that to the text. And again, like all of these things, you only have to learn how to do the skill one time. We can just repeat it for each book that we're going to be coming out with.

So, it's a very powerful way of making sure that you're not mistaken about that. You're not wasting time trying to figure all of this out.

The next one you're going to look at is Reedy. It has several templates that you can look at. Another one for is popular among authors is Blurb where you publish your books and you can look at them but there are several resources available there on the template front.

Then the final one would just be Book Design templates which is a website that also gives you the ability to get into specific templates you can use for your specific book. That's also something you're going to want to consider.

There are a lot of different options. Personally, when I was building my Book Formatting Made Easy Course, I was going through templates that I knew would be easy to use for myself and my team when putting books together. 

That's the reason why we came up with this really powerful template that just makes the process so much easier. As opposed to you just starting from nothing and then trying to figure out margins, spacing, fonts, and exactly the layout of the book. This is just painful.

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That is a very painful way to go. Or you could give it to somebody else to do all the formatting for you. But guess what? You're going to keep on coming back to your book because there are lots of things we're going to be adding and adjusting as we're optimizing the book and moving forward.

So, you're probably going to want to learn to use one or more of these templates. At least test them out at a minimum. 


In conclusion, I would like to know from you today, are you formatting your book yourself with a template? If you are, write “Yes” below in the comments. And if you aren't, write “No”. Check out my other blogs and videos for more answers to your self-publishing questions. 

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