Formatting your master MS like this eats up a lot more paper but makes it easier for your copy-editor to do their job. There are a few ‘rules’ to correctly laying it out for a publisher to view but the jury is out on whether you’d get rejected if you don’t use the right number of spaces on your indent or use a double space for linebreak. I’ve highlighted the major features below (with thanks to Romance Writers Australia where I learned this stuff–there’s likely to be slightly different versions out there (particularly in the US) but this is what currently goes for Australia. If it’s easier, you can look at a sample of a suitably formatted page in Word format.
- 3cm margins all around
- Don’t indent the first line of each chapter but indent 5spaces (1cm) all new lines after that
- Put the first couple of words in each chapter in uppercase
- Text justified to the left
- Title, your surname and page number in the header (r-h side)
- Double line spacing throughout
Breaks & Fonts
- Courier (or some other non-proportional font)
- Font size: 12
- Indicate a new ‘section’ by leaving a blank line or using *** (centred).
- Chapter numbers (upper and lower case) centred above text
- Start new chapters 1/3 way down the page
- Use underline to indicate italics