When you create your chapbook, or if you are lucky enough to get published by a reputable chapbook press, be sure to make it an event! No matter how humble, even if it’s just friends and family, take the time to celebrate and mark the occasion.
Aug 1802: Chapbook Created in a Dark Closet.
Maybe you will be famous, infamous, or you will die in some spectacular way that will make the whole world interested in your life. Who knows? Whatever happens, your chapbook should outlive you. Treat it with respect. Mark the creation date. Put it in the hands of chapbook lovers who will keep it and pass it on to other chapbook lovers. Old chapbooks have value. Eventually, yours will too. Your chapbook can live forever.
Don’t forget to donate copies to your college library, local library, and anywhere you think they might index it. Even if you think they might not care, it’s worth trying.
This is pretty easy after to do it a couple times. You will need to format your text editor to divide a page into segments. Here’s one example:
After you experiment a little, you will be able to make the appropriate changes to format your pages properly for your project. This is a fairly tiny book, of course, and uses just one sheet of copy paper to make an 8 page chapbook. This is perfect for haiku, or short poems. You will need to learn to fold the book properly. Here’s a video that shows you how (see below), and after just a couple tries, it really goes very quickly:
This tutorial is for magazines, but the technique is the same for chapbooks. Using Photoshop is an easy way to move elements around and create spectacular artistic effects in your chapbook. And, if you budget is tight, they have a free trial period for the software. You can probably complete your whole project for free if you get busy.
The most popular way to bind a chapbook is to use staples. There’s no need to go out and buy fancy equipment. Using this handy technique, you can bind even oddly sized chapbooks using a standard stapler.
Adobe InDesign is probably the most powerful tool you can use to make chapbooks. This tutorial is a bit longer, but covers many of the key skills you will need to create your own project. There’s good news for people interested in using this tool, Adobe now allows you to lease the InDesign tool by the month, so it is very inexpensive to have access to this resource.