I have successfully uploaded my children's ebook on the Kindle from html to mobi format. Now I would like to venture to other devices like the ipad and iphone. Could anyone point me to some direction where I can find out more? I seem to remember Notjohn mentioning about ePub format but know virtually nothing about it. Grateful for any help.
First, their customer service is, well, to put it lightly. Non existent.
The formatting instructions are definitely, Not For The Faint Hearted.
I was so confused as a new author, before i published my first eBook. I opted to download the Smashwords Style Guide, reasoning, they are both in the game of distributing to iBooks. So, easier formatting instructions can’t do any harm.
After formatting, using SW styling, I submitted to Lulu. All of a sudden I was faced with all kinds of error emails, clogging up my inbox, claiming my eBook was rejected. Ranging from “inaccurate TOC, The NCX must be accurate. To, text mismatches. Without specifying exactly what the problem was with the text.
After a couple of weeks, or months. I can’t remember exactly. I went to SW and submitted my book. I soon got an email saying “There were no auto better errors. and telling me to relax.
After a couple of days, my eBook status had achieved “Premium Approved”. Within another couple of weeks, my book had been shipped to the Apple iBookstore, where it has remained on continuous sale now for nearly two years.
Now, I only publish to iBooks and everywhere else, except amazon, using smash words. Because Lulu is a nightmare. Publishing to iBooks was so easy. I have no idea why lulu were making it so hard.
You do realize that people with iPads and iPhones can read a KDP book. There's a free reading app to allow you to do so. Look at the right hand side of any Amazon product page.
You can get on iTunes directly, but it's quite a slog. Apple is convinced you are a major record producer, not an indie writer, and requires you to jump through hoops appropriate to that status (unless you go through Lulu, as NJ does). You also have to have a Mac computer to upload directly to them.
The only way I could get an epub that iTunes would accept was to buy Pages.
After formatting, using SW styling, I submitted to Lulu
In my experience, which to be sure was several years ago, SW does a terrible job of formatting. Because the iBook people require a VALIDATED epub, I'm not surprised that the SW version failed at Lulu.
As noted, I only upload epub format, whether to the KDP or anywhere else. They convert nicely, though I really don't think it's worth a whole lot of effort to get to these secondary markets. They don't yield as many sales as they did a few years ago. (The same is true of the KDP, but the volume is here, so the money is here as well. If it wasn't for the fact that I have friends who own Nooks and Mac OS devices, I probably wouldn't bother.)
If you have access to a Mac, you can open an iTunes Connect account (which will tie to your iTunes account) and, using that account, download iTunes Producer, which enables you to upload your ePub to the iBookstore.
To create an ePub, you can convert your Mobi using Calibre. Sigil is also a great program for it.
Draft2digital took a Word doc and got it up to Apple quite painlessly, and their reporting is fast. The file doesn't covert quite as prettily as my own formatting, but it passes epubcheck, and for one market, I can live with it.
It is believed that Apple iBooks is now the second biggest ebook retailer, just behind amazon. With B&N, Kobo, Nook etc far behind. But, this cannot be verified as amazon never release their sales figures. It just does not make sense not to list your ebooks with iBooks.
More people now own Apple iPads, iPhones and iPods than the entire population of the US. Recent studies are finding, most of those users prefer to buy their reading material from iTunes Ibooks.
A lot has changed and happened at SW over the past couple of years. They are the global largest distributor of eBooks. SW conversion (meat grinder) is very fussy, it has to be as Apple iBooks are very fussy. They personally review every book before it appears for sale. SW formatting guide was the easiest to follow, for me.
I fail, to see how you can judge SW if you haven't tried them for several years. Although, they have only existed since 2008.