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place photos in your memoir book

Photos in Your Memoir Book Layout

Where you place photos in your memoir book layout is important.

While it may seem obvious, it bears repeating that where you place photos in your memoir book layout is important.

It will influence how readers appreciate your story. The only way I can grasp that makes sense is to place photos chronologically within the text. Why?

A bit of book-writing talk

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There is in reading and writing a phenomenon called “suspension of disbelief.” If I as the reader am constantly saying “This is only a book. This isn’t really happening as I read,” then it is impossible for that reader to get “lost in the story.”

On the other hand, if the reader agrees not to challenge the story—to make as if the story is actually happening as s/he is reading—then there is a good chance the reader will enter the story and experience it as if it were unfolding before his/her eyes.

Now the reader is only one partner of the agreement. The other partner is the writer.  The writer MUST NOT do anything that forces the reader to suspend disbelief.

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4 Responses to Photos in Your Memoir Book Layout

  1. Avatar
    David Lyman March 20, 2018 at 8:57 PM #

    There are so many considerations in using photographs in a book it might be best to have a skilled graphic designer involved.
    Quality of each image, color or B&W? or converting Color to B&W! on which page, left or right? Are captions needed?
    Do the images enhance the story, tell something the words do not? Or do the images repeat what’s already been written. A graphic designer or a good editor will know.

  2. Avatar
    Denis Ledoux March 21, 2018 at 12:34 PM #

    Yes, the graphic design element of a book is worth investing in after all the hard work that has gone into the writing and editing. I am always devastated when I receive copies of memoirs which are full of dark or gray, washed out photos.

    We have been offering in-house book design for years.

  3. Avatar
    Chris Noyes May 12, 2020 at 7:24 PM #

    Is it best to let the reader commit to the story for a couple of chapters before including pictures, even if the pictures are appropriate to the early text? Or would it help engage the reader to have photos in the early pages?

  4. Avatar
    Denis Ledoux May 18, 2020 at 9:49 AM #

    I believe that photos can help to engage a reader. I’d include them early on if I had them

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