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Formatting For Kindle/nook

kindle nook formatting

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#1 SEOigloo

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 05:01 PM

Hi All,
I have been reading up on formatting formatting an eBook for Kindle/Nook devices and am wondering if anyone here is successfully selling in this manner. What format did you have to convert your eBook or document into? How are you promoting it? Any advice from someone who has already accomplished this would be much appreciated! Thank you!

Edited by SEOigloo, 08 January 2012 - 05:02 PM.


#2 Dr.Marie

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 07:44 PM

I'm not doing this, but since getting an iPad I have bought several books on Kindle. If I published a book I would definitely get a Kindle version out there!

#3 A.N.Onym

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 07:43 AM

I haven't done this, but I heard that Kingle likes the .mobi format, since they've bought the company, that developed it. I'd imagine there is a number of converters, such as http://calibre-ebook.com/, to help you convert a PDF or a .doc into a .mobi or even .asw. Not sure about special formatting just for Kindle, though.

To be fair, Kindle should be fine with textual PDFs, but I haven't tested it extensively. They say it has trouble changing font size in some PDFs.

Edited by A.N.Onym, 09 January 2012 - 08:14 AM.


#4 jsteele823

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 07:57 AM

I used Calibre to convert quite a few books to put on a Kindle (.mobi). The calibre program is actually quite useful, as it can convert into many different formats in just a few clicks. As such, you could easily convert your book to a number of formats, and have it available to everyone.

It takes a bit to get used to the interface, so make sure not to delete the user manual - trust me on that one :)

#5 glyn

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 08:14 AM

A cheap way if you have a kindle.

Create a simple PDF (IE don't use tables and graphics so much).

Send it to you free @kindle address.

It will get delievered to your Kindle, USB to your kind from your PC. and get the file.

The problem will be things like Tables of contents which don't get converted - at all I think - so you get one big file.

#6 DonnaFontenot

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 03:42 PM

A lot of people just let Smashwords handle it all for them. http://www.smashword...h_on_smashwords

#7 SEOigloo

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 04:09 PM

Wow, thank you for all of the helpful feedback, everybody. I will definitely check all of this out!!! Donna, that last link looks especially interesting.

#8 iamlost

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:13 PM

I have split my reply into three parts:
1. some oft missed bits.
2. Kindle formatting.
3. Nook formatting.

1. Some Oft Missed Bits:
Note: I have restricted specifics to the US and Canada as those are the markets with which I'm most familiar.

* register copyright.
Canada: Application for Registration of a Copyright in a Work, $65.00.
USA: eCO Online System, $35.00 online, $45.00 paper.

* if you get your own ISBN (International Standard Book Number) you will be listed as publisher as well as author. Personally I consider this a no-brainer. However, this is an area to be thoughtful and learn so you know what you doing and what you need.
A good primer: International ISBN Agency FAQs, International ISBN Agency.

Canada: The Canadian ISBN Service System (CISS): Free if published in Canada.
Note: of interest to Canadian Publishers: Legal Deposit .
No copies need be deposited with Library and Archives Canada if 3 or fewer copies are made.
1-copy must be deposited if 4 through 100 copies are made.
2-copies must be deposited if 101 or more copies are made.
Library and Archives Canada supports the CIP (Cataloguing in Publication program of cooperation between publishers and libraries enabling the cataloguing of books before publication.

USA: R.R. Bowker ISBN Office: Price varies depending on how many you buy at one time. From US$125.00 for one.
Note: I would recommend buying at least 10 at a time (in US) for significant savings: 10 for $25.00 each, 100 for $5.75 each, 1000 for $1 each.
Note: of interest to US publishers:
The Library of Congress also supports the CIP (Cataloging in Publication) program.

* once you have an ISBN you can either pay $45.00 (in both Canada and US) for a generated barcode OR you can do a search for a free online generator.
Note: the result must be clearly readable by a barcode reader.

******************

2. Kindle
If you are publishing to Kindle Amazon has an entire subdirectory available to assist. :) While, they say that they support several formats I find that many including PDFs do not always convert well.
See Supported Formats.
You will note that every option has caveats listed. See below for my recommendations.

One of the links on that page is to Simplified Formatting Guide.
Lots of great step by step information plus all the sidebar and other links.

Note: given our, Cre8, readers' likely expertise I would strongly recommend that you forgo Word and even PDF and code and upload as HTML (images in separate file to same location) ... BUT ... carefully read/understand the Kindle HTML defaults and exceptions...

HOWEVER: for ease of whatever both Kindle and Nook convert Word or OpenOffice .doc format quite well. Remember to remove all page numbers, page breaks, fancy fonts, etc.

Note: Because the displayed format flows differently depending on user's font-size, etc. you, as publisher, have no individual page control. You only set 'page' breaks at chapter endings. If you have not already realised that 'normal' page numbering is relative/subjective/irrelevant in ebook readers, well... :) Yes, this can muck up things such as indices and Table of Contents - fortunately you can still set text anchors that work well.

The nice thing is that you can use Amazon's service to convert your work to Kindle readable format and keep to deliver to any Kindle readers who stop by your site. Of course it could be best to also publish (last step :)) via the Kindle Store for wider exposure and some revenue.

Best for Last:
Note: recommend the KindleGen command line tool to convert their HTML, XHTML, XML (OPF/IDPF format), or ePub source into a Kindle Book. (part way down page)

Lower on same page: also recommend the Kindle Previewer which emulates Kindle on Win or OSX.

I still recommend uploading any tables, image captions, fancy font headers and the like as images. They are getting better at conversion but still not always quite right.


******************

3. Nook
Nook uses the ePub format and has created PubIt! to handle conversions et al.

Recommend reading PubIt! Support and Resources Page. Especially the formatting section.

See the 'notes' in the Kindle section, much applies to Nook.

For those without a Nook and with a PC: nook for pc.

******************

Last Note: Do NOT stint on the cover. It sells the book.

Last Last Note: I have never used either (or any other) of the services mentioned in this thread (Calibre, SmashWords) but they are two of many; some are free, some are paid, some simply convert (with varying results depending on input) and others also secure ISBNs, etc.

Doing it all directly one's self is simple enough once one struggles - can you say ignoramous incompetentous? (not you of course :)) - through the first one the process is straightforward.

It is no longer best practice to simply offer a pdf version. Now one should also cater to the popular readers particularly Kindle and Nook. And offering your creation in their online stores has several benefits...

#9 SEOigloo

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 10:06 PM

A mere 'thank you' is insufficient to express my gratitude for the time you took to share your above advice, Iamlost. :morningcoffee:
Your in-depth advice will be read several times over by both I and my husband and I am sure it will prove invaluable.
I truly appreciate it!!!

#10 DianeV

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 01:44 AM

Also, there's On-Demand Publishing's createspace.com (which identifies itself as "an amazon.com company" in the footer), where you can set up your book for print-on-demand (and sales at Amazon.com). I've only read so much of it, but apparently there's another area where you can select to have your book formatted for Kindle. They also offer a Word template to use in formatting books, and offer professional assistance as well.

http://createspace.com

#11 glyn

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 06:56 AM

I have split my reply into three parts:
1. some oft missed bits.
2. Kindle formatting.
3. Nook formatting.

1. Some Oft Missed Bits:
Note: I have restricted specifics to the US and Canada as those are the markets with which I'm most familiar.

* register copyright.
Canada: Application for Registration of a Copyright in a Work, $65.00.
USA: eCO Online System, $35.00 online, $45.00 paper.

* if you get your own ISBN (International Standard Book Number) you will be listed as publisher as well as author. Personally I consider this a no-brainer. However, this is an area to be thoughtful and learn so you know what you doing and what you need.
A good primer: International ISBN Agency FAQs, International ISBN Agency.

Canada: The Canadian ISBN Service System (CISS): Free if published in Canada.
Note: of interest to Canadian Publishers: Legal Deposit .
No copies need be deposited with Library and Archives Canada if 3 or fewer copies are made.
1-copy must be deposited if 4 through 100 copies are made.
2-copies must be deposited if 101 or more copies are made.
Library and Archives Canada supports the CIP (Cataloguing in Publication program of cooperation between publishers and libraries enabling the cataloguing of books before publication.

USA: R.R. Bowker ISBN Office: Price varies depending on how many you buy at one time. From US$125.00 for one.
Note: I would recommend buying at least 10 at a time (in US) for significant savings: 10 for $25.00 each, 100 for $5.75 each, 1000 for $1 each.
Note: of interest to US publishers:
The Library of Congress also supports the CIP (Cataloging in Publication) program.

* once you have an ISBN you can either pay $45.00 (in both Canada and US) for a generated barcode OR you can do a search for a free online generator.
Note: the result must be clearly readable by a barcode reader.

******************

2. Kindle
If you are publishing to Kindle Amazon has an entire subdirectory available to assist. :) While, they say that they support several formats I find that many including PDFs do not always convert well.
See Supported Formats.
You will note that every option has caveats listed. See below for my recommendations.

One of the links on that page is to Simplified Formatting Guide.
Lots of great step by step information plus all the sidebar and other links.

Note: given our, Cre8, readers' likely expertise I would strongly recommend that you forgo Word and even PDF and code and upload as HTML (images in separate file to same location) ... BUT ... carefully read/understand the Kindle HTML defaults and exceptions...

HOWEVER: for ease of whatever both Kindle and Nook convert Word or OpenOffice .doc format quite well. Remember to remove all page numbers, page breaks, fancy fonts, etc.

Note: Because the displayed format flows differently depending on user's font-size, etc. you, as publisher, have no individual page control. You only set 'page' breaks at chapter endings. If you have not already realised that 'normal' page numbering is relative/subjective/irrelevant in ebook readers, well... :) Yes, this can muck up things such as indices and Table of Contents - fortunately you can still set text anchors that work well.

The nice thing is that you can use Amazon's service to convert your work to Kindle readable format and keep to deliver to any Kindle readers who stop by your site. Of course it could be best to also publish (last step :)) via the Kindle Store for wider exposure and some revenue.

Best for Last:
Note: recommend the KindleGen command line tool to convert their HTML, XHTML, XML (OPF/IDPF format), or ePub source into a Kindle Book. (part way down page)

Lower on same page: also recommend the Kindle Previewer which emulates Kindle on Win or OSX.

I still recommend uploading any tables, image captions, fancy font headers and the like as images. They are getting better at conversion but still not always quite right.


******************

3. Nook
Nook uses the ePub format and has created PubIt! to handle conversions et al.

Recommend reading PubIt! Support and Resources Page. Especially the formatting section.

See the 'notes' in the Kindle section, much applies to Nook.

For those without a Nook and with a PC: nook for pc.

******************

Last Note: Do NOT stint on the cover. It sells the book.

Last Last Note: I have never used either (or any other) of the services mentioned in this thread (Calibre, SmashWords) but they are two of many; some are free, some are paid, some simply convert (with varying results depending on input) and others also secure ISBNs, etc.

Doing it all directly one's self is simple enough once one struggles - can you say ignoramous incompetentous? (not you of course :)) - through the first one the process is straightforward.

It is no longer best practice to simply offer a pdf version. Now one should also cater to the popular readers particularly Kindle and Nook. And offering your creation in their online stores has several benefits...


Another great post there mate...copied into my database for future reference :)

#12 tam

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 11:40 AM

Just wanted to add my thanks, I'm interested in this too. I've got a print edition but I'm wondering at offering a kindle one - particularly to the US as shipping hard copies is expensive. I think it's going to need a complete reformat of the layout as the print one is a lot of graphics with text flowing around them. I didn't realise you could use html, that sounds a great option, I tried a PDF on my sisters kindle and it didn't work at all - too much sideways scrolling.



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