Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Formatting your E-book Essentials (the basics)

Formatting your E-Book- 101


Hit the home tab.

Scan your eyes until you see a small node that looks like a music note. See below;

Below is an example of what you'd see once you click the node;

                                                 YOUR CONTENTS LISTED BELOW
.......................................page break............................................
 NOTE- you should see the music note looking symbol throughout your document (¶)

If you can’t locate it, hit Ctrl+Shft+*

This will show your paragraph marks/ indentations/ spacing-

To undo this, repeat ctrl+Shft+*

Now that you have that nailed, we’ll move on.

Make sure the node is clicked. (Ctrl+Shft+*)

Let’s check your E-books formatting.

1.    Scan through your document, to make sure you have the equal amount of line spacing and paragraph spacing.

2.    If you noticed that there are too many inconsistencies for you to correct manually, then highlight the desired pages or click the home tab, then on the far right, click on “Select “ (located near change styles, find, and replace)

3.    Select All-  Your document should now be highlighted.

4.    Now click on the “Page Layout” tab (located near the right of the home tab)

5.    Near the mid section of your page (just off to the right), you should see Indent and “Spacing”


6.      Reset your spacing by typing  the number “0” IN THE AFTER AND BEFORE BOX. (BOTH ARE NECESSARY)- otherwise your document will be double spaced once you attempt the next step.

 (You'll see your paragraphs merge directly beneath each other)

7.      Now type in the  NUMBER “6” in the after box.


8.      You should have visibly seen your document now format itself to a 6 pt. spacing.
If you preferred your previous formatting, hit undo, until your document clears your current formats. It's located near the save node, which is the floppy disk looking image - If you can't find it, hit Ctrl+Shft+Z
until your desired preference. (Only if you want to undo the 6 pt. Formatting)-

I use the 6pt formatting with my novels. It works beautifully. 12 pt spacing is way too much, and robs your readers of substance. You might be able to get more pages out of the 12 pt formatting combined with large print font, but this should not be done. Using 12 pt or higher combined with large print fonts is a form of deceit, and if a reader catches on, this will only hurt your sales. Unless specified, avoid making that mistake. (Of course, Large print and larger para spacing is acceptible for printed editions of your works- again, your reader just has to be aware that they are purchasing a "Large Print edition")

9.      Back to business; You should be able to see any page breaks you’ve made (if page breaks were created)


If you have yet to create page breaks, and don’t know how, I’ll guide you through it on a later post.


10.   For those that have page breaks; make sure you have one inserted in the following places;










Make sure you hit enter, then place your page break, allowing only one space after each chapter. This does not apply to your Cover Page, Table of Contents, or additional introductory pages. Additional enters/ spaces beneath your finished text may be necessary.


Do not just hit page break after each page.


11.   Now that you have made sure your page breaks after each chapter have just that single space, and the rest of your page breaks are as desired, we’ll need to make sure you have a standard font. Amazons converter does not recognize custom fonts (or at least all of them)


Times new Roman is a good standard font to use.


12.   Select your entire document (using select all). It should all be highlighted now. Choose your desired generic font through the home tab. Ctrl+Shft+F- if you can’t find the menu.

13.   Now select your font’s size. Font size 11 will work just fine, but nothing larger.

14. Your next step will be; hold CTRL + J (this will jusify your paragraphs, creating a more professional para formatting)  (It is optional, but if you've ever sampled one of my books, you will be able to see that all my paragraphs are aligned, creating a clean look on both the left and right side of the page.

NOTE: throughout all steps, your document should have remained highlighted. (Select all)-

15.   Hit Ctrl+Shft+* to undo the help tool. This should clear the paragraph guide marks.



You’re now done with the basics-


Lee Argus-