The Art of Indexing by Larry S. BonuraThe Art of Indexing by Larry S. Bonura

The Art of Indexing

byLarry S. Bonura

Hardcover | April 6, 1994

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A step-by-step guide to creating comprehensive and usable technical indexes. Numerous surveys indicate that the most common complaint about technical documents concern a poorly designed index--or the lack of an index altogether! An organized, thoughtful index not only ensures that the contents of your book are accessible, but also increases the value of your book. In The Art of Indexing, professional indexer and editorial consultant Larry Bonura addresses the indexing problems specific to technical documentation and presents practical solutions to those problems. The Art of Indexing shows technical writers, editors, and documentation managers how to chart the topics of their books, reports, and documents and present a concise and accurate map that readers, researchers, libraries, bookstores, and reviewers can use to maximize the usefulness of their book. Step-by-step, The Art of Indexing shows you how to become a better indexer by:
* Discussing the function of an index
* Showing how to estimate indexing time
* Presenting methods for selecting entries and subentries
* Reviewing reasons for cross-referencing
* Describing how to treat locators
* Offering an extensive editing checklist for reviewing indexes
* Covering indexing for online documents
* Including numerous usability tests for verifying the strength of an index
* Containing information on indexing standards
* Providing sample indexes and a sample indexing style guide
* And much more!
About the author LARRY S. BONURA has a combined experience of twenty-five years in the publishing, operating systems, and editorial management industries. Since becoming a professional indexer in 1977, he has worked on trade books, technical manuals, daily newspapers, magazines, and newsletters. A past president of the District of Colu...
Title:The Art of IndexingFormat:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 8.66 × 5.59 × 0.78 inPublished:April 6, 1994Publisher:Wiley

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0471014494

ISBN - 13:9780471014492

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Table of Contents

Becoming an Indexer.

Technical Indexes.

Determining Audiences.

Achieving Completeness.

Criteria for a Good Index.

Answering Questions.


Defining Index Elements.

Selecting Topics.

Describing Topics.

Arranging Topics.

Handling Special Cases.

Alphabetizing the Index.


Creating Cross-References.

Working with Locators.

Preparing Index Cards.

Automating the Process.

Creating Master Indexes.


Formatting the Index.

Managing the Index.

Editing the Index.

Testing the Index.

Indexing Tips.


Online Indexing.

Indexing Standards.



See Also.



From Our Editors

A writer once remarked that "The presence of an index means that the author and publisher respect the book and that a reader will respect it". A document without an index has been likened to a country without a map; and it is generally accepted that nearly every work of nonfiction is far more useful if it includes such a chart in the form of an index. This is especially true for technical documents, which delve into multiple topics and subtopics from which readers may want to pick and choose. Now Larry Bonura, a writer and consultant with more than twenty-five years in the publishing, operating systems, and editorial management industries, addresses the special indexing needs of technical writers in The Art of Indexing. This practical handbook gives you all the information you need to create indexes that will pass the toughest of usability tests. Step-by-step, The Art of Indexing leads your through the process of creating a high-quality index for your technical book, document, or report. You'll learn the seven major tasks to help you create a better index - from d