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2,318 Views 13 Replies Last post: May 10, 2012 3:07 PM by Jani RSS
Level 5 11,790 posts since
May 4, 2008
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May 5, 2012 4:16 PM

If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

It never ceases to baffle me when authors admit to not reading other books. I've always held the belief one should study what has come before, emulate it and try to improve upon it. This applies to the craft of writing as well as the technical side of publishing.

 

So, I've been working with a few authors lately, to convert their books to ebooks. I send them the finished files (ePub and mobi) for review, and am met with confusion.

 

Author: There's something wrong with the files. I can't open them.

Me: Just open them in your e-reader software.

Author: What's that?

 

I don't expect people to run out and buy a Kindle or iPad, just because you want to publish an ebook, but you're on a computer, right? The software is free (Adobe Digital Editions and Kindle Desktop), there are hundreds of thousands of free ebooks out there. Aren't you curious to see what's possible before attempting it yourself?

 

You wouldn't try bungee jumping without a professional demonstration first, would you?

 

Just as importantly, you wouldn't tell a professional designer that she's done the job incorrectly, when you haven't had any experience with how it's done at all. Go see how it should be done before you criticise.

 

Rant over. Thanks for reading.

 

 

Michelle

-------------

Odyssey Books -- editing, cover design and book formatting services to help you on your publishing journey.

Level 5 13,397 posts since
Mar 8, 2009
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1. May 5, 2012 4:41 PM in response to: lipmag
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

Hear, hear! Well said. Now you've made me want to make an effort to actually do something with my last two books. Hmmm. Dorothy! Break out the wet noodles!

 

Seal

Read: Not Much of a Crime - Political Corruption, Intrigue, and Murder in a small Nevada town

FREE OpenOffice Interior & Cover Templates available at:

http://www.stevenwjohnson.com

Level 5 13,397 posts since
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3. May 5, 2012 4:55 PM in response to: lipmag
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

I am proofing Hard Times and Soft Soled Shoes, The Curious Misadventures of Tubby Wexler, Private Investigator, Volume 2. I am working on Baffled, a story about an author who is framed for his wife's murder. And trying to find a decent title for another book about a muckraker who ends up as a mummy in the California desert.

 

Seal

Read: Not Much of a Crime - Political Corruption, Intrigue, and Murder in a small Nevada town

FREE OpenOffice Interior & Cover Templates available at:

http://www.stevenwjohnson.com

Level 2 423 posts since
Jan 3, 2011
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5. May 9, 2012 11:57 AM in response to: lipmag
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

Well, I can see how they'd know they need an e-book yet have no idea how it works. I think they assumed you'd hold their hand for -everything- for the service they're getting - the whole "I'm paying you so I don't have to think" mentality.

Level 3 576 posts since
Sep 24, 2009
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7. May 9, 2012 5:14 PM in response to: lipmag
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

This is way off topic, but for some reason every time I see the title of this thread I can't help but think "I'd rather see than be one."

Level 2 142 posts since
May 8, 2011
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8. May 9, 2012 5:27 PM in response to: lipmag
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

The woman I had convert mine kindly sent me a link to the download for kindle for old school computers.  Solved the question to how to read the file!  I've passed that bit of info on to others, but who knows how long it would have taken me to find it myself.  As to why do an e-version?  Because enough of my friends asked if I was going to that I decided I should.  And, hey, did you see those Kindle sales figures?

 

Think of it this way: if we knew more, we might do ourselves.  Your job is to put up with our techno-luctance/vague memories of html.

 

I still haven't jumped on the e-book wagon yet.  Might, maybe, one of days.  If only the pesky things didn't need charged. Someone could totally sell me one you don't have to remember to plug in.  Ever.

 

Stephanie

one bowl: simple healthy recipes for one

http://onebowlcookbook.com

Level 5 14,268 posts since
Sep 5, 2009
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10. May 10, 2012 8:20 AM in response to: GroundCherry
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

You can download Kindle for PC or Kindle Previewer. But to test a Kindle, it has to be done on a Kindle.  The Kindle Previewer isn't bad, but it isn't a Kindle, even Kindle suggest not relying on the Previewer (much better than Kindle for PC) to test Kindle books.

 

$79 ain't bad.  If you turn off wifi, a charge lasts most people 3-4 weeks. It charges off your computer (USB), which also lets you transfer books if you have them on your computer. You can make the text bigger or smaller; my wife, for example, likes to read in bed, and she can do so without her reading glasses by simply making the text big.

 

Walton

Level 1 52 posts since
Mar 6, 2012
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11. May 10, 2012 2:27 PM in response to: walton
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

Hi there, been down this road and I found that the Calibre e-reader which is free and you download to your puter reads all the different formats which digital books come in.  You can also convert the format of your ebook to any other format. The site is here.  Ps.. not getting sponsorship for this btw

 

The program effectively turns your puter into a e-reader for free, allowing you to test different formats. There are a number of these in the market btw... this is simply the one I recommed for my readers. I would recommend that you test the format BEFORE you release any ebook, on the reader it is intended for as I found some variation in fonting in the new generation e-readers out from asia at Christmas time.  This program handles the kimble .mobi format really well and converts it to other formats quite easily.

 

The Calibre program acts as a library for your ebooks and transfers books from its library into any e-reader connected to the puter allowing you to easily review and manage library lists on both puter and ereader.

Level 5 3,191 posts since
Mar 10, 2012
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12. May 10, 2012 3:02 PM in response to: Jani
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

Just as a proviso to this I would like to say, do not use Calibre to test a kindle file. For epubs it is relatively accurate but for a .mobi (kindle) file the built in rendering system is extremely incorrect. What you see in Calibre is definitely not what you get on a kindle.

 

R. C.

Level 1 52 posts since
Mar 6, 2012
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13. May 10, 2012 3:07 PM in response to: R.C.
Re: If you've never even seen an ebook, why do you think you need one?

Very True RC    it goes for most e-reader programs. I dont think Calibre tries to emulate, it is a e-reader in its own right. It does give you the opportunity to read the ebook on your puter though. I should have mentioned that.

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