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Writing Books/Making a paperback book


I have a question about making a book. My Mother in law has written a book. It has been proof read, all errors fixed , but it is on 8 1/2 by 11 computer paper. we dont want the book published or anything. but for a Christmas gift we would like to take her writings and put it in paperback form. is there any software out there that we could use to retype the writings into  and print out from our home printer, make a cover and kind of put it all together with a binding? kind of like a paperback you could pick up from Walmart.
Any kind of help on this would be great
thank you in advance

Michael Provenzano

Hi Michael,

Thank you for your question. That sounds like a great idea. There are several ways to go about it. When we used to have a desktop publishing company, we used to use PageMaker. You could set up a header that would stagger the page numbers from left to right (for even and odd pages), put the page numbers in automatically, and so on. However, it's been years since I've used PageMaker, so I can't recommend it anymore.

I would probably use Microsoft Word. You can set up headers that will account for right and left pages, you can choose any font, and you can set up the size of the page.

The most difficult part is to get the signatures right. You have to have the pages go in order. Usually, professional printers do the signatures in batches of 20 or 24 pages, then bind them together. It's difficult to explain how to do this in an email. If you want to print it in signatures, write back and I will attempt to explain how it's done.

An easier alternative would be to simply photocopy it two sided. Set the pages up to go in order and be sure to put a blank sheet in if there's supposed to be a blank page somewhere. The photocopy place will then make a copy, trim it to size, and bind it using Velobind (a plastic strip melted on the left side, and give it a card stock cover.

I hope this helps. Write back if you want more details.

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Nori J. Muster


Writing and publishing books, including e-books.


I have been writing for publication since 1981, including years as a staff writer, associate editor, editorial writer, and freelance reporter. At this time, I have eight Kindle books for sale at

Lakes of Tempe Authors, Tempe, Arizona

Betrayal of the Spirit: My Life behind the Headlines of the Hare Krishna Movement
Dreaming Peace: Your Thoughts Can Change the World
Cult Recovery Handbook: Seven Paths to an Authentic Life
Child of the Cult
Learning to Flow with the Tao: The 64 Hexagrams of the I Ching
Positive Quotations: Wisdom from the Master Mind
Collected Writings: Five Books by Nori Muster
Noriland Art Gallery: Secrets from the Vault
Spiritual Summer and Other Short Stories

UCLA Extension Writer's Program, 1988 - 1994
Master's Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, Western Oregon University, 1991

Awards and Honors
USA Today, Los Angeles Times, BBC World Services Focus on Faith, BBC Sunday Programme,, Glamour Magazine, Portland Mercury News, W-Five TV (Toronto), Publisher's Weekly, Boston Phoenix, San Francisco Chronicle, ABC TV News - 20/20, ABC radio, Associated Press, The Age (Melbourne),, The New York Times, Religious News Service, Dallas Morning News, Columbia Journalism School, Whole Life Times (Los Angeles), Toronto Sun, the John Dayle Show (KFYI AM, Phoenix), the Eliot Stein Show (syndicated radio and Internet broadcast), Discovery with Josh Wagner (KKUP, 91.5 FM, Santa Clara, California), KOGO (News Radio 600, San Diego), Jupiterís Girl syndicated radio show, Lakes Log.

Book Reviews:
Publisherís Weekly, Feminist Bookstore News, Yoga Journal, New York Post, Choice Magazine, Boston Herald, Nexus (Colorado), Gentle Strength Times, Coastlines (UCSB alumni), Theology Digest, Nova Religio, Rapport, India West,,

Book Signings:
Prescott College reunion; Gentle Strength Co-op, Tempe; Different Drummer Bookshop, Laguna Beach; L.A. Times Toastmasters; Biltmore Plaza Border's Books, Phoenix; Bodhi Tree Bookstore, Los Angeles; Health & Life Enrichment Expo, Pasadena; Sacramento Reads book festival, and others.

ISKCON World Review, Van Dhal Publications, Gentle Strength Times, Arizona Woman, Lakes Log, ICSA Today, Cultic Studies Review, University of Illinois Press, Kindle,,, Apple Books, and others.

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