Self publishing problems?

Discussion in 'Cookbook Reviews' started by chef earl, Oct 7, 2015.

  1. chef earl

    chef earl

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    I seem to bee having problems of self publishing of my cookbook 
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    The simplest method is ebooks via Amazon and Barnes & Noble. There are other ebook markets out there as well, but these two have the simplest front ends. My links below are US centric. You should use the country of residence front end so you have the right tax and legal framework to work in.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/seller-account/mm-summary-page.html?topic=200260520  is the start page for epublishing at Amazon as well as their print-on-demand service.

    http://sarracannon.com/indie-writer...ides/how-to-publish-an-ebook-on-barnes-noble/ is an instruction set for doing the same at B&N, though I can't vouch for it's accuracy.

    You don't have perfect control over layout with either of these methods. If you want to set up your own epub directly, there are a few freebie primary apps that simplify things. 
    • Sigil http://sigil-ebook.com/ an epub word processor--sadly no linux support.  Sigil will work with the XHTML without you having to learn the code. 
    • Calibre  http://calibre-ebook.com/  can generate ebooks in various formats from different inputs as well as convert between the different formats.
    • 7zip http://www.7-zip.org/  an epub is a zipped archive of xhtml files and this is a handy tool for manipulating zip files
    • Inkscape https://inkscape.org/en/   is a specialised graphics editor for SVG formats. Scalable Vector Graphics. Because epubs are read on differently sized devices from small phones to big computer screens, images that scale smoothly across these sizes are important. This is the preferred tool and supported format. 
    There's certainly more to it than that and I've toyed with starting a group here for people to create their own as it has some interesting possibilities for the solo user as well in searching and managing their recipes. 
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
  3. steve tphc

    steve tphc

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    A number of things you may want to consider.

    Do you want to offer your book to a market? The number one book market takes the form of Epub so you will need to have a way of using your capture editor output in a format that is importable as an Epub.

    A second popular format is a PDF. There are many free ways to export Microsoft Word files as pdfs.

    Formal books with index, table of contents, bookmarks, and footnotes require a desktop publishing tool. Microsoft Word can do those things but they are not easy and requires expert knowledge of Word. See this article: How to Use Microsoft Word to Create an Ebook

    I used Adobe tools (Framemaker and adobe Acrobat to produce the PDF format.) I published on Lulu which allowed me to produce a low-cost-per-copy book in low volumes. The downside was these tools are expensive and Framemaker takes quite a while to learn.

    The actual size of a book matters a lot. A popular book size is 6x9. The number of pages allowed usually top out at around 700 pages.  This limit only applies to real paper published books. Color books may run 15 cents per page while black and white only 3 cents per page.

    For more answers, ask friends that have published for assistance. Best talk on phone.

    [email protected]


     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2015
  4. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    I've been a FrameMaker user since version 3. It's simpler than Word in my opinion.
     
  5. raibeaux

    raibeaux

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    Anyone know where you can find a good recipe template?
     
  6. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    A template to what purpose? To which program?
     
  7. emilycooksretro

    emilycooksretro

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    Can you use it for making Kindle books? I've been using Calibre and still have some formatting issues. 
     
  8. raibeaux

    raibeaux

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    Just a standard template to print out.  It would look like a recipe card without the information.

    Not talking about using a computer program.

    Thanks.
     
  9. chicagoterry

    chicagoterry

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    Instructions for creating text ready for Kindle are found here:

    https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A2MB3WT2D0PTNK

    You will need to follow those directions to the letter to be able to properly upload it. Amazon/Kindle uses proprietary software. Anything you submit is going to need to be able to work to their specs. Once a file submitted to their specs has become a Kindle e-book, it will only be readable on a Kindle or on another device that has the Kindle App installed. It's a free app.

    Really, if you want to publish this as a Kindle ebook, all the information you need is available on line for free from Amazon. Publishing self-published books and ebooks is more and more where Amazon makes money. They sure don't make it from selling books at or below the discounts they receive from publishers.It is in their interest to make the self-publishing information very readily available.
     
  10. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    You could use FrameMaker as the basis for Kindle books, but it would be less than ideal because of the transition in formats. While FrameMaker is a more powerful tool, it is less common, so there are fewer scripts and automations for cleaing up the output HTML into good XHTML for epubs and their related formats (Kindle uses an extension of the epub format).  Books have been written on converting from MS Word into epub. That work is somewhat applicable to FM as well, but you'll need to know XHTML better to edit the scripts into workable form. 

    Sigil is still the best epub tool. While it can show you WYSIWIG content, it's not particularly simple in use as you need to apply the formatting codes manually. It's sort of like the Reveal Codes feature for WordPerfect. 

    Last time I checked, Amazon could take an MS Word document and convert it fairly well to kindle format saving you a lot of hassle. 
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2015
  11. emilycooksretro

    emilycooksretro

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    Thanks for all the answers. I have Sigil already and may end up using it instead of Calibre. 
     
  12. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    You might use Calibre as an intermediary step to clean up your Word document, then load that resulting epub into Sigil for final manipulation.