I want to thank everyone who commented on this post about that Ukraine book I want to write. Your support really means a lot to me. This past week was kind of bad and annoying, so seeing those encouraging comments made me happy.🙂

As for the book itself… I’m working on getting an outline together so that I can define the scope. I want to have a good idea of what I’m going to write about before I start doing serious research for it. Otherwise, the research just gets too confusing very quickly.

While we’re on the topic of this book, I’d love to know your opinions about footnotes/endnotes. The only lengthy nonfiction writing I’ve done has been in academic history, where people just love content-rich footnotes/endnotes. What this means is the notes don’t just contain citations of sources, but actual information as well. For example, I used footnotes in my final thesis project to put a random discussion of hot air balloons carrying massive portraits of Stalin in the countryside of the Soviet Union in the 1930s. It was an interesting fact, but didn’t fully fit in the paper itself.

Honestly, I think reading these notes is kind of a pain. You have to flip back and forth within the book and that gets tiresome after a while. Do you think it’s a good idea to try to avoid doing this sort of thing for the Ukraine book? I’m inclined to avoid it if possible because I want people to actually read what I’ve written.

5 thoughts on “Thanks For The Encouragement!

  1. Like everything, use footnotes/endnotes judiciously! You want the book to flow. If your reader keeps having to flip to the back to read the footnotes, it disrupts the flow. If you put too much background information in the way of the main text, it too disrupts the flow.

    1. I second this.
      I’m currently poring through a book that has the footnotes for each chapter situated at the end of each chapter. You still have to flip a few pages if you want to read the footnotes, but you don’t have to go all the way to the back and that’s good.
      I’ve also seen books where footnotes are put in smaller font at the bottom of the page as needed, but it should be done in moderation (like, maybe 1-3 notes depending on length) as the page could become cluttered. And I wouldn’t have them on every page.
      I hope this was helpful in some way.

  2. I just finished an ebook with tons of footnotes. It was a humorous book and the footnotes were meant to heighten that experience (and they were truly funny!) but… it was such a pain. I ended up just reading them in bulk at the end of each chapter. If it had been a paper book I totally would have been flipping back and forth to read every single one but on a Kindle? Ugh. Maybe there’s another way? On the other hand, a lot of people expect to see extra documentation in a non-fiction book + like you said, it gives you more breathing room for additional info. So, sorry, this is probably not a very helpful comment.

    And btw, I’d love to read your thesis project even if just for that single footnote, haha! :p

    1. No, that was helpful. Honestly, I’ll probably just use endnotes to cite the sources, not have actual stuff to read in there.

      And finally, someone who appreciates the Stalin balloons!😀

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