Speaking to a friend this morning I saw she’s having a major struggle to format one of her books for Kindle. After a few days, changing computers to get a different version of word, and tearing her hair out by the roots she’d almost there. The remaining problem is to do with headers.
I confess that much of what she told me was gibberish to my ears and obviously I can’t help her. But, I’m pretty sure that some of you either can or know someone who can. It occurred to me that there are plenty of people like my friend , especially newcomers or those like me who are technologically challenged. I’m thinking of creating a page on the blog to help those people by inviting those of you with skills to list your services, your contact details and perhaps your fees for specific jobs ( if set).
If you think there’s merit in the idea and would like to be included on the page please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your Name, your skill(s), your contact details and information you think relevant. I’m happy to take those who edit, format, Design Book Covers, Graphic Designers or have any skills to help an author even beta reading.
This is the actual story from the friend in question.
This isn’t my first book I’m working on. It’s my third. The first two are completed with Kindle formatting and paperback headers. All is well. This third book has been on Kindle for a year. I’m trying to convert it to paperback.
The problem is that I tackle this stuff about once a year, so I don’t do it often enough to remember from one time to the next. Even my tons of pages of instructions are Greek. Add in one new computer (upgrading from Word 2003 to 2010), and it’s a mess.
At this point the paperback formatting is mostly okay. I dragged out the old computer (Word 2003) and managed to get it done by carefully following the formatting in a previous book. I have page numbers in the right places, with the title/my name alternating back and forth between odd/even pages. I’m tempted to let it go as is. What I cannot manage to do is get the header info off the chapter pages, to get it to skip a page, without creating a new section for every chapter start and getting the numbers to begin with page 2. That’s an area where I tinker endlessly until it miraculously sections itself correctly, though I don’t really know how/why. For the first books I just blithely cruised right through and didn’t bother taking out those headers on the chapter pages. Now, for this current book, I’d like it to look better than the others.
I will say this: All this drama with simple formatting is keeping me from finishing the next book. It’s in Word 2003 files, regular .doc files. I dread the Kindle process, and I dread the header process of yet another book. This is kind of where the rubber meets the road, and I’ve just slammed on the brakes.
If anyone can post a link to a site with some idiot-proof Kindle and header format instructions, I will be grateful.