Wednesday, January 04, 2012

How To Publish Your Book In Kindle - Part 2

This is one of the cases where the description and rules are a lot more "wordy" than the actual process. However, some of the steps below will be completely clear to many people, while others who have little experience may have some trouble. I have tried to outline most of the problems that I know of and came across in my own experience. If you know of others as we post the step-by-step please feel free to leave them in comments. 

The first thing we must do is deal with any formatting that you have in your book document.

If no formatting exists, and if you do not want formatting at all  you can skip this step. However, if you have formatting or need to change formatting read this part carefully.

Please be aware that I am not dealing here with non-fiction documents which have things like footnotes or endnotes inside of them. These are basically a bit more complicated

Ebook formating software handles very simple and specific formats and nothing more. So you have to be careful with formatting. Any special formatting will simply not show up in your ebook or will cause some wonky unwanted effects.  

One thing to be aware of. When we format things for underline and bold, if you are like me, you mark off till the end of the line sometimes, and then click the U for underline. Sometimes this leads to the following line or lines to be formatted with underline even though there is nothing on those lines.

For instance:

Ancient Tales, Modern Legends
(this line is empty but an underline command exists) so it may appear as:

When this would be put in Ebook format in some of the readers, notiably the early Kindels, you will find that when you preview the document, an _ in the line. If you see this seemingly out of nowhere, chances are that your underline is on on that empty line. Thus the above may look as follows:

Ancient Tales, Modern Legends

So the best way to avoid any of these unwanted characters showing up is to move your cursor over the empty lines in your document and make sure all formatting is off. This can be a tedious process but easy with Word. Just takes patience, and besides you do want your document to look the best possible. So what formatting can  you use?

Bold and normal underline are ok.
To see a full list of the possible do's and dont's look here.
Simplified Formatting Guide

Let me copy from the section "Building Your Book" on Amazon's site some extremely important lines to remember in formatting:

File Format: Save your content in DOC (or .doc) format, not RTF (.rtf) or DOCX (.docx) as the latter do not translate well to Kindle. Save your work periodically as you make changes to ensure all changes are recorded. 

Layout: Use indentations, bold characters, italics and headings, as they will translate into your Kindle book. However, bullet points, special fonts, headers, and footers will not be transferred, so be sure to avoid those. 

Personally, I have not noticed with .docx format - however my books do not have complicated formatting so I would save it all to the .doc format just in case!


Again from Amazon's Instructions:

Page Breaks: Enter a page break at the end of every chapter to prevent the text from running together. To insert a page break in MS Word, click "Insert" at the top menu bar and select "Page Break." 

Once the document is formatted with your underlines and bolds etc. let us move to page breaks.
If you want a page break (essentially white space in ebook format) between say, chapter and chapter, position your cursor at the end of the chapter and FORCE a new page with Word. Do NOT rely on any natural page breaks. This may seem fairly logical to anywone who has ever formatted a document for an agent, publisher or magazine submission, but it is something to bear in mind if you are not used to it. 

If you have images inside your book, (not the book cover we will discuss that later), then make sure you do the following: (Again From Amazon's suggestions)

Image Placement: Images should be inserted in JPEG (or .jpeg) format with center alignment (don't copy and paste from another source). Select "Insert" > "Picture" > then locate and select the file. If your book has a lot of images, it can be viewed in color by readers using our free Kindle apps for PC, MAC, iPad, iPhone, and Android. Otherwise, remember that images on Kindle are displayed in 16 shades of gray for great contrast and clarity. 

HOWEVER, with the advent of Kindle Fire, and Ipad and Android Tablets, the gray only is necessary for the older Kindle. When you view your book on the older Kindle it will only be in black and white and shades of gray. This may or may not influence your use of images. It is something we will consider later when talking about the Book Cover Image. However, this is your decision. Many of your current illustrations may just not work well in the shades of black and white that are available. You must decide if it is worth to change them, or leave them as they are as soon the market will certainly contain mostly all color tablets and this will be somewhat of a mute decision.

Now Headers & Footers:

A Simple Header may be:
Gross - Ancient Tales, Modern Legends Page 5


In Word you can delete Headers by going to Insert--->Headers then clicking while you are in your header and then click on "Remove Headers". If you have section headers you will have to do this for each section.

We still have a lot more to cover, but this is enough for this post. You should have your work cut out for you. Remember in all cases you can and should read the Formatting Your Book Section in the FAQ section of KDP on Amazon.

Meantime of course, I have do my own PR. :)
So..."Ancient Tales, Modern Legends" has had really good success so far. The books are priced @ $1.99 in the USA. (Other countries Amazon adds VAT etc.)

Ancient Tales, Modern Legends

A Tale That Is Told - Part I (The Chronicles Of The Children Of Heaven Series)

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Posted On: Cobwebs Of The Mind

1 comment:

Kindle How To Profit said...

Wow! Thanks for the post. It's every writer's dream to be a published author; to sit and write books and have them published and selling all over the world. How great would it be to be able to write as many books as you want to and know that they will all be published?