Here's a plug for end-grain joinery
For a strong joint, give the screw some face grain to dig into. Here's how: Drill a dowel-diameter hole through the face of the project part, located so that the screw threads will fall mostly or completely inside the hole. Then, glue a length of dowel into the hole. Set the dowels so their end grain is perpendicular to the grain on the face of the project part. Cut the ends flush with your project part. Now, drill your pilot holes and drive in the screws.
—Tom E. Moore, Madison, Va.