How to create a Table of Contents

One of the most complex procedures of eBooking is creating a Table of Contents. Like anything, once you’ve done it a few times, you get the hang of it. Here’s how I do it (using Microsoft Word 2011 for Mac)…

  1. Insert a blank page where you want your Table of Contents to go (usually after the copyright page and before Chapter 1 / the first story / the prologue).
  2. Make sure your have all your chapter headings (or story / poem titles if a collection) in the main text of your story.
  3. Highlight your heading text e.g. Chapter 1 from the story (not the Table of Contents), making sure you don’t copy any carriage returns.
  4. Select Insert then Bookmark from your top-of-screen menu headings.
  5. Type in the name of your Bookmark, e.g. Chapter1 (no spaces) and click on Add.
  6. Repeat this for each heading. As you go through them the previous chapter heading should appear in the Bookmark option saving you a bit of time as you’ll only need to change the last one or two numbers, unless you’ve given them a name of course.
  7. TIP: If you use your ‘find’ facility (Alt/F on a PC or cmd/F on a Mac) it’ll not only find your chapter heading but it will also highlight it so you can then just select Insert / Bookmark etc.
  8. Now go to your Table of Contents and highlight Chapter 1 (or first story / title), again making sure you don’t copy any carriage returns.
  9. Select Insert then Hyperlink from your top-of-screen menu headings.
  10. In the middle of the Hyperlink ‘dialogue’ (small rectangular) box you’ll have sub-headings of Web Page, Document or Email Address. You want Document.
  11. Near the bottom right-hand corner of the Document sub-screen is a ‘Locate’ button (to its left is ‘Anchor’), click on that.
  12. You’ll now get yet another ‘dialogue’ box entitled ‘Set Place in Document’ then underneath that will be a ‘Bookmarks’ heading with a right arrow to its left. Click on that right arrow.
  13. This will then open up the list of your headings but they’re in (my opinion a weird) numerical order e.g. 1,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,2,20 etc. so you may need to scroll down to the one you want despite it being near the beginning of the novel (i.e. Chapter 9 will be near the bottom of the list).
  14. This is quite a lengthy process so will obviously speed up once you get used to it. I feel sorry for whoever format’s James Patterson’s novels (with his 100+ chapters) but at least he / she will have had plenty of practice.
  15. OK, so you’ve chosen your chapter and it’s appeared in your Hyperlink screen’s ‘Link To’ line (top of that screen). Now click on OK and you’ll see the relevant chapter heading in your Table of Contents has gone blue and is now clickable. 🙂
  16. Repeat this for each chapter / title and when you’ve done them all, you’re ready to go!
  17. N.B. These bookmarks will only be available within this document so when you go into another document to create a Table of Contents you will have to start the process again.
  18. The options do vary depending on which version of Word you have but the names for the options should be similar if not the same.
  19. When I have a minute, I’ll get links from all the relevant YouTube pages for all the versions of Word you might be using. I’ve listed some below.

YouTube Links: Creating Table of Contents

YouTube Links: Creating Bookmarks

Regardless of whether you use a Mac or PC you should be able to follow any of the above but if not, do let me know.

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