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Thread: Formatting an ebook properly in Word or in WordPerfect, OpenOffice or HTML


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man2010

Posts: 2,051
Registered: 01/01/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 10, 2011 9:35 PM   in response to: kdpruss in response to: kdpruss
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hopefully, Amazon will create a user-friendly "KindlePocket Creator" some day. For now, you can try your luck on a PC with a 32-bit Windows (without IE9), or you can try using Calibre:
http://forums.kindledirectpublishing.com/kdpforums/thread.jspa?threadID=15238&tstart=0
bevehoward

Posts: 250
Registered: 09/22/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 11, 2011 9:21 AM   in response to: man2010 in response to: man2010
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Confirmation needed since javascript is not the same as java... can you confirm the messages say "javascript" and not "java?"

An associate suggested the following links which relate to these problems. I don't run a 64bit system, (for exactly these reasons) so I can't comment.

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/install-and-use-windows-xp-mode-in-windows-7

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/magazine/ee851564.aspx

A related question... do you run software that specifically requires a 64bit os? If not, you might consider replacing it with the 32bit version.

Beverly Howard
bevehoward

Posts: 250
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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 11, 2011 9:31 AM   in response to: bevehoward in response to: bevehoward
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One other comment.

These problems are often related to "kernel drivers" in this case, possibly a java related driver.

While issues come when a given application needs to install kernel drivers which are 32bit and therefore will not run on a 64bit system, there may be 64bit versions that can be installed separately that the legacy app will use.

Beverly Howard
booknookbiz

Posts: 4,283
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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 11, 2011 4:13 PM   in response to: bevehoward in response to: bevehoward
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I've had no problems running it on Win7, 64-bit; what I can't do is run it with IE9 installed. Worked fine with IE8, and Amazon IS looking at the issue.

It's not an XP versus Win7 (or the dreaded Vista) issue; nor is it 32 v. 64; it's IE9, which I hope goes back to ruling in hell soon. We have it here for development purposes, of course, and as soon as we plopped it on one of the systems, MBPCreator crashed and burned as expected,as this behavior has been reported for a while now.

HTH,
Hitch
I produce ebooks
www.booknook.biz | @booknookbiz | @kimberlyhitch
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."
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notjohn

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 11, 2011 5:29 PM   in response to: booknookbiz in response to: booknookbiz
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I was about to object that I have the latest IE on my computer and it works okay, but I thought I should check before I opened my mouth, and sure enough: it's IE8.

I rarely use it, though. (Mostly to open the Kindle Publishing Guidelines, which are invisible to my Firefox.) It's a dreadful piece of software. Supposedly Microsoft and Mozilla are supposed to leapfrog one another, but it's been years since I used an iteration of IE that impressed me half as much as Firefox.
narib

Posts: 5
Registered: 12/28/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 19, 2011 9:04 PM   in response to: kdpruss in response to: kdpruss
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Actually I figured out the problem. Evidently the 64 bit version of MobiPocketCreator on Windows 7 insists that your table of contents tag has an element and attribute. In other words, if you used h1 for your table of contents tags, and you put just h1 in the tag field - the program crashes.

The only way around this is to change all of your h1 tags to something like < h1 class="chapter">Chapter Title</h1>. I was able to make this work without declaring the class in css (although that is a real no-no).

Then when I did the table of contents wizard - I put in h1 (tag) class (element) chapter (attribute). It works every time.

Message was edited by: narib

Message was edited by: narib

Message was edited by: narib
man2010

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 19, 2011 9:28 PM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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thanks for this useful info. Could you please edit your message so that we can see the code you are talking about? If you could replace
< with "&lt;" (without quotes)
> with "&gt;"
and & with "&amp;"
narib

Posts: 5
Registered: 12/28/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 20, 2011 1:45 PM   in response to: man2010 in response to: man2010
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Sorry about that - all taken care of.

Not declaring the "class" of course is bad html. To do this I put (in the header section):

<style type="text/css" media="screen">

.chapter

<style/>

But it seemed to work okay without it - perhaps because it isn't being parsed as a "real" html document. Best practice though would be to include it.
notjohn

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 20, 2011 2:49 PM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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[i]The only way around this[/i]

Well, there is another way around, which is not to use MPC in the first place.
narib

Posts: 5
Registered: 12/28/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 20, 2011 4:39 PM   in response to: notjohn in response to: notjohn
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I would love nothing better. But I have not been able to get it to work. I have formatted all the files exactly as specified. Line by line. Built the entire opf file from scratch.

When I run KindleGen, I get some strange error about xls template may not contain stylesheet. It doesn't. When I run the opf file through MPC - suddenly it works. And no change has been made to the file.

However, it doesn't end there. The "altered" opf file works fine, but it chokes on the ncx file. The error message at that point says "root tag <ncx> not found." That's ridiculous - it most certainly IS there.

It would be nice to be able to skip MPC altogether but KindleGen will not work on my machine. It possibly might have to do with the fact that it is a 64 bit version of windows since that causes strange things to happen to MPC as well.
man2010

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 20, 2011 8:36 PM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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thanks, narib, that's interesting
badken

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 20, 2011 9:42 PM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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Have you tried building the sample book that comes with KindleGen?

It sounds to me like you have some bad declarations in your OPF file. Did you write the OPF file or are you using one generated by MPC?
notjohn

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Registered: 01/06/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 21, 2011 2:41 AM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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[i]It would be nice to be able to skip MPC altogether but KindleGen will not work on my machine[/i]

I used MPC when it was needed to upload books to Mobipocket ebookbase, but never for a Kindle edition. I have never used Kindlegen. These were not options in the first two (three?) years of the Kindle platform. Instead we uploaded Word docs or html files, and that's what I still do (html for me).

From what I have been able to deduce from these forums, MPC and KG are traps for the newcomer. No doubt they work well for those who use them every day. I'll stick with html, since it works for me.

I don't bother with NCX and OPF files. I build a plain vanilla table of contents using html links. Others use Word for that.

If you have a clean Word doc, I think you should try uploading that and seeing what you've got.
narib

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Registered: 12/28/10
Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 21, 2011 6:57 AM   in response to: badken in response to: badken
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I did both actually. It didn't make a difference. Used the sample opf as a template.
badken

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Re: Guidelines on creating Cover, ToC, Beginning, and NCX; plus HTML template
Posted: Jul 21, 2011 2:25 PM   in response to: narib in response to: narib
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If you are able to build the sample book successfully, there is something wrong with your adaptation of the OPF. If you attach it to a message, it's possible that one of us might be able to spot the problem by reading it.
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