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Permlink Replies: 18 - Pages: 2 [ 1 2 | Next ] - Last Post: Feb 5, 2018 10:34 PM Last Post By: davidwaine1
the_peartree

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NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 5:22 AM
 
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I have a new book almost ready to launch. This one went through Amazon's own Kindle Create process and it looks quite nice. One observation I have is that I cannot for some reason download a file to preview as I have in the past. Also, when I look at it in the online previewer, clicking in the table of contents space produces something called the 'NCX View'; clicking on this produces something which then operates correctly as a table of contents.

I'm unable to email a Kindle Create file to my own Kindle e-reader so that's another way it cannot be checked! I'm sure it will be alright on the night, but if anyone has experience of NCX or uploading a KindleCreate file, I'd be pleased to hear about it.
Notjohn

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 10:57 AM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
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I've never used KC so don't know about the preview. If you can't download a file for examining on Kindle Previewer or on an actual device, I would be hesitant to use it, given the flaws with the online preview.

You might check a recent thread by David Wayne, who has used KC successfully.

The NCX file is required of all Kindle books and supplies what is weirdly known as the "logical" or virtual TOC that most of us use for navigating on a Kindle or Fire or Kindle app, as opposed to the "html" TOC that appears in the front of the book.

(Don't trust KDP to publish a print edition. Don't trust CreateSpace to publish an ebook. Each does one thing well and the other thing poorly.)

Good luck! -- NJ

Notjohn's Guide to E-Book & Print Formatting (2018 edition)

The blog: https://notjohnkdp.blogspot.com
the_peartree

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 11:48 AM   in response to: Notjohn in response to: Notjohn
 
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Thanks, Notjohn. Although I suppose I am an old hand with 12 books on there now, I am still confused as to the simplest and safest way to upload, despite AM's apparent efforts to make it straightforward. I invariably have issues with the table of contents. for example, never mind whether I upload a doc.x or an html! KindleCreate solved that problem this time but seems to have created others, as is usually the case.

Thanks for the suggested thread.
davidwaine1

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 1:41 PM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
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You cannot download a preview of your Kindle Create file, but you don't need to. Instead, download the Kindle Previewer to your computer and check your .kpf file on that. The Previewer just stays on your computer, available for any future books as well.
davidwaine1

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 1:44 PM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
 
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In addition to the above, I would recommend making a visible table of contents in the traditional way (bookmarks and hyperlinks). The NCX view will act as a ToC, but it isn't really visible to the reader.
William Thompson

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 2:18 PM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
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I'm not sure how you created you Kindle Create version but usually you must do the following in Word before you load your Word doc into KC::
  • Insert all internal and external links in Word
  • Insert your doc TOC in Word using the Bookmark/Hyperlink method(as davidwaine1 has already mentioned).
  • Insert all ebook images in Word,
  • Insert all bookmarks in Word
  • Insert semantics(bookmarks) for TOC and begin read(to generate the Go To menu links on the Kindle device) in Word.
KC only allows you to create a Logical TOC(Device TOC) and only allows you to format all text, headings and spacing in your ebook.

The only way you can check your KC ebook is using either by using KC Preview or Amazon's Kindle Previewer 3 app.

If you want to actually check what your ebook-for-sale looks like then you should perhaps purchase a copy of your ebook and look at it on a proper Kindle device. You should always do this for all your new ebooks on Amazon.com anyway. Better safe than sorry.

Why not try my free Sigil plugins now available on MobileRead?

OpenDocHTMLImport - converts ODT HTML(Writer) docs directly to epub.

GoogleZipImport - converts Google Doc HTML directly to epub format.

NormalizeScrivEpub - reformats, finishes-off and normalizes Scrivener epubs.

You can download all these free plugins from The Sigil Plugin Index on the MR Forum

the_peartree

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 10:38 PM   in response to: davidwaine1 in response to: davidwaine1
 
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Thanks, David, that’s a useful idea, downloading the Kindle Previewer itself, which I’ve done before on an earlier laptop! But now I’m concerned that the NCX is an invisible-to-the-reader table of contents – what is the point of that? Surely the whole point of KindleCreate is to offer a solution that works for idiots like me? It just seems to ‘create’ more problems – a table of contents that readers cannot see?

I write in Word. My doc.x has a table of contents which works within the document, made by me adding hyperlinks manually to chapter headings but when I upload to the site there is no sign of it; in the past I’ve tried uploading an html version which worked but doesn’t do so this time. I can do everything else needed to make a decent-looking book but always have trouble with this, to the point where I might as well pay someone to do it, rather than spend hours annoying you guys!
the_peartree

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 11:07 PM   in response to: William Thompson in response to: William Thompson
 
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Hello William, and thank you for going to all this trouble.

I followed the instructions given in the KindleCreate guide.

Kindle Create appears to offer the dreamed of solution of allowing the simple conversion of a Word doc.x to a nice-looking ebook including a working table of contents. If it is meant to be idiot-proof, they didn't run it past me. I checked again this morning and there is no mention of any of the things you list as 'must dos' before you load the Word doc into KC. (I don't know what they all mean, I'm afraid, which is why I thought KC was my salvation).

In fact, I feel rather cheated by KC because it clearly says that all chapter headings will be detected and converted into a working TOC; this isn't the case as far as I can see, with only an NCX appearing when I look at it in the online previewer. And an NCX is a TOC that readers cannot see apparently...

I do always buy a copy of my own books and look at them on my e-reader, but to do so I have to have published them first. I dare not do so at present because of the TOC issue because I have 250 people on my mailing list who will buy it immediately. I have promised them February 1st but that's now in jeopardy because of this problem.

Personally, I find writing the novel easy compared to all this other stuff!

(If it gets through, this is an alternative version of my first reply which was modded!)
William Thompson

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 11:34 PM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
 
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the_peartree said:
In fact, I feel rather cheated by KC because it clearly says that all chapter headings will be detected and converted into a working TOC; this isn't the case as far as I can see, with only an NCX appearing when I look at it in the online previewer. And an NCX is a TOC that readers cannot see apparently...
The NCX TOC is the TOC that is created on your Kindle device -- it's not in your ebook. It's created from the toc.ncx file in the mobi file by the on-board Kindle software. All the Kindle descriptions of KC creating a 'Table of Contents' are also highly misleading. KC actually creates the NCX -- also known as the Nav TOC or device TOC. And, as you say, it is not the actual doc TOC.

You can actually produce quite a good Kindle ebook with KC -- davidwaine1 has said that he has done this without much trouble. But you cannot do it without formatting certain things in your ebook with Word first, as I mentioned in my last post. So, strangely, you must also know how to use Word in order to format your ebook in KC properly.
the_peartree

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 24, 2018 11:56 PM   in response to: William Thompson in response to: William Thompson
 
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All the Kindle descriptions of KC creating a 'Table of Contents' are also highly misleading

Thank you - I thought it was me - it usually is!

I probably am a hopeless case, I know that. But I have just checked in my Word doc.x and the TOC that I created by hand works in that if I click on Chapter 14 in it, then Chapter 14 appears on screen. If I then upload that file and look in the previewer for a table of contents, it is not there. Clearly I am missing a vital step. I find this so infuriating, however, it's probably bad for my health, and I would be wiser to give someone some money to fix it!
davidwaine1

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 25, 2018 4:52 AM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
 
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I am at a loss to understand how your Table of Contents fails to appear. The best I can offer is to tell you how I make mine and let you compare methods.

As you write the book, set each chapter heading as a bookmark.

Once the book is finished, insert a blank page at the very beginning (even before the Title page). At the top of this page, and left-aligned, type CONTENTS.

Below this, type a list of all the chapter headings, one to each line. In turn, highlight each and set it as a hyperlink. Link each hyperlinked chapter heading to the appropriate actual chapter heading.

That's it. Your table of contents is now clearly visible as the opening of the book. It will be the first thing the reader sees after the cover. And it should work.

If you want to be really clever, you can put a link back to the contents page at the end of each chapter, but that is hardly necessary for a novel. It might be appropriate for a non-fiction work, though.
the_peartree

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Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 25, 2018 6:34 AM   in response to: davidwaine1 in response to: davidwaine1
 
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Thank you once again, David. You are now in the unique position of being the only person who has ever been able to explain constructing a table of contents to me as clearly as that. I have just tried that method with a few chapters of my doc.x and uploaded it. It is present at the beginning of my novel and the links work! Joy! I am going to print out your post and pin it up on my study wall.

What is interesting, however, and what has thrown me in the past perhaps, is that when I open the online previewer, at the top where it says 'Table of Contents', clicking on the drop down arrow reveals only "Cover" and "Beginning". So the previewer does not show any table of contents but there is one working inside the book.

You have brightened my day!
alisonmcable

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Registered: 02/21/11
Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 25, 2018 8:08 AM   in response to: the_peartree in response to: the_peartree
 
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On this issue I am afraid I cheat a bit. Not using Word, but LibreOffice I have in the past had to save the file as a .doc then upload it Kindle to convert to a mobi. The table of contents feature used to work with each chapter title saved as Heading format. For some reason this no longer works, and since I also publish through Draft 2 Digital I let them so the converting, (straight from the .odt file). They let me download the mobi they create, which I can them read on my Kindle to check it works. Once I am sure it is good I upload the D2D mobi to Kindle, and everything is good.

The only thing to be aware of is not to distribute your book to Amazon through D2D!
the_peartree

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Registered: 08/07/12
Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 25, 2018 9:18 AM   in response to: alisonmcable in response to: alisonmcable
 
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The table of contents feature used to work with each chapter title saved as Heading format. For some reason this no longer works

Hi, Alison, you are absolutely right and that's one of the things that has thrown me out. I only publish to KDP, and this afternoon, thanks to help received in this very forum, I am (fingers crossed) able to upload a doc.x with a working TOC.
Notjohn

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Registered: 02/27/13
Re: NCX and Kindle Create
Posted: Jan 25, 2018 1:45 PM   in response to: davidwaine1 in response to: davidwaine1
 
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type CONTENTS

Indeed, and that brings up a pet peeve: why do people insist on calling it a TABLE of Contents?

Sigil used to call it a Table of CONTENT. I pointed that out on the MobileRead forum, and of course the boffins there got huffy. But I see that it has since been quietly fixed.

(Don't trust KDP to publish a print edition. Don't trust CreateSpace to publish an ebook. Each does one thing well and the other thing poorly.)

Good luck! -- NJ

Notjohn's Guide to E-Book & Print Formatting (2018 edition)

The blog: https://notjohnkdp.blogspot.com
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