Inside Indexing:
The Decision-Making Process

by Sherry Smith and Kari Kells


Table of contents
for Inside Indexing

for Inside Indexing


Order Process

Kari's index
for Fodor's book

Sherry's index
for Fodor's book

Used in the Text

About the authors

Site Map

Contact us

Copyright 2006
Smith and Kells
Northwest Indexing Press


If it is an accepted rule, then I'm an unrepentant sinner,
because more than once I've found it necessary
to make one or more entries for a metatopic.

Linda Sutherland

In this chapter, we present our approaches to the metatopic problem of creating an entry for the primary topic of the book without turning the entire contents into subentries under one main heading.

Both of us believe that providing access points at metatopic terms is important and we both created entries that do this. Each of us discusses the challenges associated with identifying the metatopic and then using those words in main headings and subentries.

In the chapter closing, we offer a new strategy that helps readers navigate any index if they enter at a metatopic term.



How do these indexers' perceptions of the audience influence the development of their indexes?

How do these indexers' understandings of the text influence their approaches to creating entries?

How do these indexers' ideas about Fodor's primary topic impact their index structure?

How do these indexers collect information and what influenced their decision-making?

Access Routes
How do these indexers develop pathways into the text?

How do these indexers use words and phrases to support the structure of the index?

How do these indexers consider and evaluate consistency when implementing the other indexing principles?

Final Chapter
What have we learned from reading about the two indexes and the decision-making behind the entries?

Download a copy of Martha Osgood's index for Inside Indexing.