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Front & back matter - SYWTWAB

What is SYWTWAB, you ask? Glad you asked. I started this publishing journey full of hope and lacking so much knowledge on what actually needed to happen. Publishing my first book was a nightmare. I kept finding out all these tiny, tiny details that mattered, tiny details I knew nothing about. So was born, "So You Want To Write A Book" for those who would like to write but aren't sure where to begin, it is my hope that this series is able to help at least ONE author out in the world.

One of those things was front and back matter.

There are many things you can include or exclude in both the front or back matter of your book. I will label them accordingly.

In my research, this is the typical order I've seen these pages in, but they can be moved around based on personal or publisher preference.


Full Title page*

The title of your publication, author name and publisher logo (if applicable) shows on this page. *The full or half title pages can be switched based on preference.

Half Title page*

Only the title of your publication shows on this page.


The legal bit, this is usually where you'll find the ISBN number along with publisher, year published, and more. (This will be a future topic where I'll go into more detail.)


blab blah

Table of Contents (optional)

The list of chapters and front/back matter of the book


The body of the work (AKA: The chapters/story/etc)



A continuation of the story meant to bring closure or a hint of more to come. Usually shorter than a typical chapter, but usually no longer than a chapter.

More by Author (Optional/Front or back)

A list of other works written by the author

Title page

The book title, author name, and subtitle of the book (if a series.)

Acknowledgments (Optional/Front or back)

Glossary (Optional)

Vocabulary terms and their definitions that are found in the book. This is handy for fantasy books with cultures and terms that have been created for the book/series.

Bonus material

Any extra bonuses you wish to include, notes, quotes, deleted scenes, discussion questions, links or more.

Author Bio

A sentence or paragraph about the author, sometimes including author photo.

And there you have it. There can be more or less included in both the front and back matter, but these are the most common things you can find in fiction works. Many publishers and authors will move things around, to decide on the things you want for your books and the order you prefer them in, flip through your favorite books and check them out.

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