I don’t mind admitting that my eyes glaze over and my mind wanders off somewhere all on its own when it comes to matters of technology, but Kindle – well now. It is simple I was told. Easy as pie. Well I can make a pie along with the best of them.
So I chose a book to e-publish – one that I had in a new version of Word, already published as a pocket novel and by Linford Romance. Book chosen, I set about designing my cover at which point I learned that designing book covers isn’t easy. Easy, that word again.
I set up my account and decided to ignore the bit where it said about downloading this-and-that to convert the file so Kindle could read it. In my poor little mind I had heard that it was easy to publish straight from Word and so I thought this was what I would do. Just like that.
I know patience is a virtue and all that, but I only have a small supply and I’d used it all up so I uploaded my book and checked the preview. Hm. Well some of the Tabs were there. Some weren’t. It looked terrible. No one would want to read something so badly set out. So I deleted it and went back to the drawing board where I learnt that you should save your Word file as an html (web) document before uploading.
This I did. Better. The tabs were there, but some were big tabs of several spaces and some were small ones of just a couple of spaces. Still I had ignored the advice about downloading this-and-that.
This is just the beginning of the Kindle story – I hope! I’ll let you know how I get on in part 2.
There you weren’t expecting it to be that quick were you? Neither was I!
I downloaded this-and-that – this being Mobipocket Creator and that being Kindle Previewer. And what I found was that my book was full – nay heaving – with hidden stuff and that about three chapters at the end were underlined. No matter what I did it was still there, but only in the html copy. I don’t do well with html.
My beloved suggested I save the Word document as plain text which I did, then re-saved it as a new Word document and there it was, without all the unwanted bits.
So there it is. I think I sorted out the formatting – I hope I did because I published two books to Kindle with my own home made covers. Gulp! They looked okay on the preview anyway. Yet still I managed to make a mistake. I set the price higher than I intended because I forgot to take into consideration that they add VAT, but I’ve put that right now
One thing I have learned from this experience – no, not the good old “Read the manual” thing, I will never make life easy by doing that – is that I will always endeavour in future not to overload my Word docs with formatting. Now I understand why publishers ask for things to be presented in a certain way and I have no wish to give editors stress, angst and headaches!
Now don’t laugh, but I’ve put a link to the Kindle books at the side on the right. So far so good. All I need now is for someone to be kind enough to buy them – cue hysterical rather desperate laughter. And now I think I need to go and lie down to recover and ruminate a little on the wonders of technology.