At Hamilton & Hamilton, we have long experience of helping academics, authors, and publishers produce indexes for their papers, manuscripts and books. When we are sent a text to index, our indexer, who will have a postgraduate degree in a suitable subject, will read through the text and identify the concepts within the text relevant to the nature of the paper and the intended readership. The indexer will then create headings representative of those concepts and phrase them so that they can be found when in alphabetical order (so, for example, our indexers will list 'indexing process' rather than 'how to create an index'). The headings and their associated locator numbers will then be entered into specialist indexing software which handles the formatting of the index and facilitates the editing phase. The index is then hand edited to enforce consistency.

A good indexer will analyse content with the intent of listing pertinent concepts and ideas that may not be explicitly named within a manuscript but are of vital importance – this is why Hamilton & Hamilton only uses indexers qualified in related disciplines to the texts we are sent. We remember at all times that the index is intended to help the reader, rather than the author, so our indexers ultimately aim to act as an intermediary between the manuscripts they are given and their ultimate users.

According to tradition, indexing is the responsibility of the author, and publishers and printing presses will expect the author to arrange for one to be produced. For the unprepared, it’s a time consuming, laborious and sometimes tedious job that is difficult to get right. Here at Hamilton & Hamilton, we can save an author the time and effort required and deliver a professional index quickly and affordably. Please contact our managing editor Glen Hamilton directly if you would like any further information or would like to talk about a specific project.

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