Formatting a book for Kindle, Createspace, or Draft2Digital and other indie publishing companies can be complicated. They have rules and it’s difficult to keep up with them. How do you prepare your book format for upload without paying for every book edit change?
I use Scrivener for my formatting. It’s taken me years of use to stumble on different ways for compiling my manuscripts, mainly because I haven’t taken the time to learn Scrivener. I watched a few videos early on, but mostly I used the help that comes with Scrivener to find what I need. Scrivener has two versions, one for Mac and one for Windows. A new version is coming out this fall.
Deciding on your Editor is one way to format a book the way you want it to appear. You choose your default font and formatting and set up the editor to match. It’s best to do this before importing, otherwise you spend time converting to the default format in each section of the book. I’ve done that!
I’ve used Scrivener for years – best investment I’ve made!
I choose Georgia, a more modern font and the normal text at 12. This helps us older people be able to see the words and read them. I recently learned that fiction books use indentation of paragraphs and have no spaces between paragraphs. Non-fiction books do not have indentation of paragraphs and have a space between paragraphs.
The best thing about Scrivener is you can set up front matter, one for manuscript to send to an editor, paperback for the paperback pages, and one for ebook for ebook pages. This is so you can have a copyright page with the ISBN number for paperback books and one without for ebooks. You can also do different front pages with extra offers with links to other pages.
Prepare your book format for upload to publishing websites
And then you can create different compile presets, one for sending to the editor, one for Kindle, one for paperback, and one for other digital types. You can import a Kindle extension from Amazon to use in Scrivener that creates a mobi file. Set up your compile for PDF, epub, docx, and others for different uses and websites.
And when you get your presets done, you can use them in other books so each successive book is easier to compile. When you make a change to the manuscript, you compile again and upload to the publishing website. You can prepare your book format for upload in a matter of minutes.
Each book and each author will require different things for each book, so creating a step by step tutorial here will show you one way to do it but maybe not the best way for your situation. That’s why many authors use templates to create their book. I’ve downloaded many free templates and learned from each one. I think the Scrivener site has several good templates. Check those out, but another spot for free templates is here.