How to Create Tables


Tables pose special challenges when it comes to formatting and laying out your book’s design. You can make the process go as smoothly as possible by constructing your tables the proper way.

You should never manually tab or space out text to create the appearance of a table. If you find yourself struggling to get words or data lined up with each other, you’re probably not doing it the correct way.

If you view your table in ‘Show Formatting Mode’, you should not see little dots or little arrows between your columns. The dots represent where you’ve hit the Space Bar. The arrows represent where you’ve entered Tabs. If your table is constructed this way, it probably won't look like you intended when the page margins change for publication.

Instead, for Microsoft Word users, position your cursor at the insertion point where you would like the table to appear. Then, go to ‘Table’, ‘Insert’, and ‘Table’. In the ‘Insert Table’ dialogue box that pops up, you’ll enter how many rows and how many columns you’ll need your table to be. Then, click ‘Okay’. An empty table will appear ready for you to type in the needed text. You can change the shape of your table as well as the shape of individual rows and columns by placing your cursor over the line you wish to manipulate, then clicking and dragging.

You shouldn’t worry too much about making your tables esthetically pleasing in your original manuscript. As long as the table is constructed properly and your text is typed into it, we’ll finalize its design during production of your book.

Since tables require a little extra time and attention to detail, there is a fee for table formatting. See our Fee Schedule or contact your representative to learn more about table formatting fees.