Indexers Help Readers Access Your Information.
Like most editorial skills, indexing is a hidden art until it’s done poorly. Can a computer generate a good index? No. It requires human brainwork combined with common sense, as well as an understanding of the different paths different readers might try in their search for information. You might be able to do this for your own book; some authors can. But you may find you’re too close to your work, too familiar with its terms, or just too tired by this stage in the book production to see it with fresh eyes.
As an indexer, I read every page of your work. Using special software (which helps with good index-writing about as much as a word-processing software helps with good writing, and no more) I generate an index that reflects the spirit and substance of your work and follows your publisher’s specifications.
The creation of a listing, usually alphabetical, with page locations or links, of all those terms that a reader may wish to find in the main text of certain works of non-fiction.
A good index will provide different paths for the range of readers of your book who are interested in finding what they’re looking for quickly and easily.