Creating eBook Files

Here are some options for creating Kindle eBook files on your Mac. The first section covers file formats that can be converted to Kindle format by uploading the files to the Kindle Direct Publishing website. The second section shows how to create Kindle-ready files directly on your computer.

Creating files for upload to KDP

Creating Word Doc files
Creating an HTML document
Creating PDF files
Creating ePub files with Apple Pages

Creating Kindle-ready files on your desktop

Converting your file with KindleGen

Creating files for upload to KDP

Creating Word Doc files

If you are using Microsoft Word or Apple Pages, you can create a Word .doc format file that will convert nicely to Kindle format.

Microsoft Word with limited formatting translates well to the Kindle device. Be sure to 'insert' any images into your document rather than copy and pasting. Remove hard returns as much as possible and insert page breaks at the end of chapters for optimal viewing on the Kindle.

More information on our Microsoft Word .doc guidelines can be found on our Formatting Help Page.

Creating HTML documents

If you want to add some more advanced formatting, you can convert your Word file into HTML and the upload that HTML file for conversion. For novice HTML enthusiasts, KDP supports a number of select HTML tags.

You can create an HTML-version of your book in Microsoft Word by choosing "Save As" and then Web Page, Filtered (*HTM & *HTML) (for PC) or Web Page (.htm) (for Mac). In Apple Pages, you can choose "Export" and "Send to iWeb" to export your file in HTML-Format.

Get started with our Basic HTML guidelines.

Creating PDF files

You can also upload a PDF file of your book, but this has a larger margin for error. This is because graphics formatting or page numbers or sidebars included in the PDF design do not always convert well to the flexible Kindle format, which lets users set their own type size for viewing text. If you'd like to use a PDF file to publish your book, please upload it and preview the converted file to make sure it looks the way you want it to look. If it doesn't, you might consider converting it to a .DOC file.

To create a PDF file in Microsoft Word or Pages, you can choose "Save As" and select "PDF" as the file format.

You can also choose to print your file, and choose the print as PDF option in the printer dialog.

At this time, KDP only supports uploaded PDFs in the following languages: English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Catalan, Galician, and Basque. To view a list of the languages we currently support, please visit: Supported Languages.

Creating ePub files with Apple Pages

Apple Pages, as part of the iWork suite, lets you export files in the ePub electronic publishing format for eBooks.

To export your book file as an ePub file, simply select "Share" on the Apple Pages menu bar, then "Export" and select "ePub" as the desired format.

This will create an ePub format file ready for upload to the KDP website.

Creating Kindle-ready files on your desktop

Instead of sending an HTML or DOC file to the KDP website for conversion, you can also convert your book into Kindle-format directly on your computer.

This offers the advantage of being able to upload this file to your Kindle device, or view the finished file in Kindle Previewer software for quality control. Checking the quality of your eBook before publishing to the Amazon Kindle Store is strongly recommended.

Converting your file with KindleGen

KindleGen is a free command line tool used to build eBooks that can be sold through Amazon's Kindle platform. This tool is best for publishers and individuals who are familiar with HTML and want to convert their HTML, XHTML, XML (OPF/IDPF format), or ePub source into a Kindle Book.

You can download KindleGen here.

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