DIY: How to Make a Pocket-Size Book

As a companion to Indie Innovators, a special section on groundbreaking presses and magazines, we demonstrate how to make a pocket-size book. View the accompanying slideshow for information on formatting your book in Microsoft Word. (Note: Instructions may vary slightly depending on the version of Microsoft Word you are using.)



Pocket-Size Book

The video shows copy on both sides of the unfolded, uncut page. Is the reader expected to unfold the book and flatten it out to read the reverse? Or might the reverse be formatted same as the obverse and the reader re-fold the book so the backside of the big page shows as a continuation of the first 8 pages with another 8 little pages?

Has anyone made a 16- or 32-page little book?

Thanks for watching, Geof!

Thanks for watching, Geof! The video shows type on both sides of the unfolded page because we repurposed a page torn from an old copy of Zoetrope, which had type on it. When folded, that text is actually hidden from the reader. It's clear in the accompanying slideshow ( that your formatted text should appear only on one side of the page.

As for the sixteen- or thirty-two-page little book, we haven't made one yet, but there are many ways to format and fold chapbooks. Here are some of the other techniques we've used: Good luck!

Reply to Spettypiece

Thank you. The url for other methods of making chapbooks came up "page not found."

As for folding and cutting a book for more than 8 pages, I've learned that it can be done by simply folding again (16 pages) and again (32 pages), etc. The cut is then made longer, all the way to what will be the final panel. The difficulty arises when one attempts to stuff all those accordion folds into their proper place, and the result is a bit more delicate than the 8-page book because the "hinge" that holds it all together is smaller.

If anyone knows an easy way to get those folds into their proper position, please divulge!

Origami Poems Project

Wonderful article and video. In Rhode Island, we've started the Origami Poems Project - creating these single-page, origami-folded books - and distributing them for free in many, many locations. About 50 poets and 100 books created to date. Check our website:

Jan Keough

How to Make Pocket-sized Book

I am unable to follow these directions because they seem to be created for Microsoft Word for a PC.  I am using Word for Mac 2011.  I would REALLY like to be able to do this.  Do you have specific directions for Mac users?  Thank you so much.