Oh TOC, the table of contents, – what shall we do with you, particularly in the world of ebooks?
You have been around for a such a very long time. We’ve gotten quite used to you. To the left you will see one that is quite old.
When I am writing a book I put one in because it helps me bounce around to different chapters. I can find them faster if I want to work on them.
But in the actual finished book, are they really necessary? If your chapter names are just numbers, then perhaps not. But I like coming up with interesting names for my chapters. It feels sort of cool to see them in a table of contents: Corranach an Feill, The Gates of Dawn, On the Brink of Chaos, The Battle of Heroes, The Last of all Battles…they invoke a feeling that adds to the emotion of the book.
But an ebook is a whole different experience. You can do an electronic bookmark. You can ask your kindle/nook, etc to take you to the furthest point read. Some sources say you need need a table of contents, some say you don’t. For me the decision was made by how much trouble it was to include one and how poorly the instructions were written. I tried one upload with a table of contents and the results were disastrous. That clinched it for me. No TOC. But still, was that the right decision?
I would love to hear what YOU think. Do you want a table of contents in an ebook? Please comment below.