Monday, March 5, 2012

2012 edition of Format Your eBook for Kindle in One Hour now available!

I have written a new edition of my do-it-yourself guide Format Your eBook for Kindle in One Hour. You can buy it for just $2.99.

It includes the following improvements from the previous version:

  • Restructured chapters are in bite-sized chunks, making it easier for you to stop when you need to.
  • Compatible with my upcoming guide, Format Your eBook for Nook in Four Hours. You can clean up and tag your novel in Word, then use that Word file in both the Kindle process and the Nook process. It will save you some time this way if you want to publish on both devices.
  • Italics, bold, and underlined text support. Instructions on how to do a global find and replace to add appropriate code to all italics, bold, or underlined text in your novel. It's now easy to convert such text to the code required by Kindle!
  • Template code for cover page, title page, table of contents, dedication page, chapter title pages, acknowledgments page, about the author page, and books by the author page.
  • Cover image and other images. Instructions on how to add the cover image to your novel. And also how to add other images to the rest of your novel.
  • Link to dedicated forums for all the formatting books! Formatting Forums!

Here's what the formatting of your enovel will look like after using this guidebook:

Full table of contents of the 2012 edition:

Chapter 1: Do not buy this book if...

Chapter 2: Why you should buy this book

Chapter 3: Introduction

Chapter 4: Why are there other editions of this guide?

Chapter 5: Isn’t this book the same as Derek’s other formatting book?

Chapter 6: Why not just sell both sets of instructions in one guidebook?

Chapter 7: Contacting Derek

Chapter 8: What your book will look like

Chapter 9: How long will this really take?

Chapter 10: Tools and files you’ll need

Chapter 11: What else you’ll need – patience!

Chapter 12: Instructions and conventions

Chapter 13: Overview of the entire process

Chapter 14: Show file extensions in Windows Explorer

Chapter 15: Download the template HTML file

Chapter 16: Save your novel files to the working folder

Chapter 17: Replace the placeholder text in the template

Chapter 18: Include a dedication page (or not)

Chapter 19: Include a clickable table of contents (or not)

Chapter 20: Overview of cleaning up your Word document

Chapter 21: Delete the front matter from your Word document

Chapter 22: Remove double spaces from your Word document

Chapter 23: Remove blank lines from your Word document

Chapter 24: Clean up italics leaking between paragraphs

Chapter 25: Clean up bold text leaking between paragraphs

Chapter 26: Clean up underlined text leaking between paragraphs

Chapter 27: Overview of replacing Word formatting with code tags

Chapter 28: Replace the & (ampersand) character with XML code

Chapter 29: Replace greater than and less than characters with code in your Word document

Chapter 30: Add paragraph tags to your Word document

Chapter 31: Fix problems with bulleted lists

Chapter 32: Fix problems with numbered lists

Chapter 33: Tell Word to use straight quotes instead of curly quotes

Chapter 34: Fix lonely paragraph close tags in your Word document

Chapter 35: Delete extra paragraph tags from your Word document

Chapter 36: Add code for centered paragraphs

Chapter 37: Optional: Add carriage returns

Chapter 38: Add tags for all the italic text

Chapter 39: Add tags for all the bold text

Chapter 40: Add tags for all the underlined text

Chapter 41: Replace other special characters with code

Chapter 42: Optional: Add more images to your novel

Chapter 43: Tell Word to go back to using curly quotes

Chapter 44: Done editing the Word doc

Chapter 45: Copy chapters from Word document into the HTML file

Chapter 46: Replace chapter titles with formatted chapter titles

Chapter 47: Paste your acknowledgements into the HTML file

Chapter 48: Paste the about the author section into the HTML file

Chapter 49: Edit the Books By This Author page

Chapter 50: Optional: Add page breaks

Chapter 51: Done formatting your ebook!

Chapter 52: Compress your book files into a zip format for upload to Kindle KDP

Appendix A: Efficiency shortcuts in Windows

Appendix B: Efficiency shortcuts in Word

Appendix C: Troubleshooting

Appendix D: Kindle formatting resources

Before buying the new guidebook, you might want to consider the following reasons NOT to buy it:

·         Do not buy this book if you are happy with the automated conversion provide by the Kindle Direct Publishing site. If you like the results you get from the conversion tools, you don’t need this book. I found that the conversion tools resulted in some strange formatting behavior with page breaks and line breaks, among other things, which is why I prefer to use the method explained in this book.

·         Do not buy this book if you already own Format Your eBook for Kindle in One Hour 2011 Edition. If your copy of the book does not indicate an edition, then you have the 2011 edition. The 2011 edition still works, but the 2012 edition has instructions on a few more things, and is compatible with my other book Format Your eBook for Nook in Four Hours. So, if you're happy with the 2011 edition and don't want to worry about Nook, then don't buy this book. If you want to put your book on both Kindle and Nook, then you should get this book and the Nook book.

·         Do not buy this book if you want a comprehensive explanation of Kindle formatting. This book is a precise, non-comprehensive step-by-step guide to format your ebook for Nook in ONE way. This book does not tell you every detail of Kindle formatting, nor does it explain why things are done. This is not a classroom textbook. This is a rigid method for formatting your ebook in ONE way. If you pay attention and know a bit about coding, you could figure out additional options, but that is not the purpose of this book. The purpose of this book is to get your ebook formatted as quickly as possible with very few decisions to make on your part.

·         Do not buy this book if you don’t want your future ebook to be formatted like my novel The Elemental Odyssey. I used these instructions to format that novel. So, go download a free sample from Amazon and see if you like the page, paragraph, and text formatting enough to have your book look the same. If you don’t, then don’t buy this book.

·         Do not buy this book if your novel has tables or lots of lists.  This book explains how to format novels with basic text (including normal, italics, bold, and underlined). This guide also tells you how to format numbered and bulleted lists, but it is a laborious process, so if you have lots of lists it’s probably not a good idea to use this guide. This guide does not include instructions on how to format tables.

·         Do not buy this book if you only use Mac. This book does not explain how to do anything on the Apple Mac or any other operating system besides Windows. If you only have a Mac, do not buy this book. I’m a PC user, and so this book does not support Mac. If you don’t feel comfortable self-converting these instructions from PC to Mac, do not buy this book.

·         Do not buy this book if you are not comfortable using Microsoft Word. These instructions assume you are using Word. If you aren’t, you’ll need to know how to do the same things in your word processor.

·         Do not buy this book if you are not comfortable renaming, copying, and moving files in Windows Explorer.

·         Do not buy this book if you are not comfortable doing Find and Replace in a text editor (such as Notepad or Microsoft Expression).

·         Do not buy this book if you can’t follow step-by-step instructions, in order.

·         Do not buy this book if you are easily frustrated by complicated, boring work. Manually formatting your book is a chore. If you put a quotation mark in the wrong place, it could mess things up. If you are easily frustrated by computers, coding, debugging, or boring repetitive formatting tasks, do not buy this book. Instead, you should use the conversion tools or hire a professional to do the work.

·         Do not buy this book if you only want to upload your book to your own personal Kindle. This book tells you how to publish your book to Kindle for other people to buy from the Amazon website. If you just want to upload your book to your own Kindle, you don’t need this book. Check your Kindle user’s guide to learn what is possible.

Does the old edition still work?

Yes, the 2011 edition of the guide still works. So, if you like it, you don't need to buy the new edition. But, you get a lot of new options in the new edition, so you might like it better.

If your copy of the guide doesn't indicate what edition it is, then it is the 2011 edition.

PS: Format Your eBook for Nook in Four Hours will hopefully be published within a few weeks. It will be available at an introductory price of $6.99, because it was so difficult to write. ;)


  1. I have been happily using your Kindle guide for nearly a year now and can't wait for your Nook guide!

  2. JA, I'm glad you found it useful.

    I'm currently in the NovelCleanup.docx stage for the Nook guide. I hope to publish it some time this week! (On Kindle. It will appear on Nook a while after that.)

  3. This ebook was a HUGE help! I bought it on Saturday and had my new book up on on Sunday.

    An extremely valuable resource for anyone wanting to save a few bucks and control the process.

    Thank you for writing this, well worth ten times what I paid for it!

  4. James, I'm glad you like it! If you want to send me 10 times more money, I won't object. ;) But, instead, I certainly wouldn't mind if you bought some of my other books.

  5. Seems like a good read. If you're not using Amazon Kindle already to establish yourself as a trusted author, you really should be. It's a great way to build authority and brand yourself as an expert.

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