How to Publish an Ebook Picture Book from a Mac: for Nook, Kindle, PDF

I promised I'd post the process I used to create my ebook, "Princesses, Princesses, Princesses!" for PDF download, for Kindle, for Nook. It's actually not that hard but certain steps can be tricky. Hopefully this little tutorial will help you avoid some of my mistakes. I need to thank VonLogan Brimhall for their tutorial. It got me started. It may work well for PC users, but I am an Apple girl. So there were just some parts that didn't translate well. In addition, the dimensions they proposed for the devices didn't work for me when importing to InDesign and to the devices from there. And finally, there were a few easier tricks I learned in the process.

Remember, Kindle and Nook both have free apps for iphone and ipad and in the android market so anything sold by them can be read on those devices as well. You aren't limited to just kindle or nook users.

Here's what programs I used...so if you don't have these 2 programs, this tutorial won't be super useful to you. I'm sorry.
  • Adobe Photoshop (any version should do- I have CS5)
  • Adobe InDesign (version CS5 is what I used, I don't know if earlier versions work, I think CS4 does)
  • Adobe Acrobat (I used Pro, you'll need more than just the reader)
I'll start with the most difficult and go to the easiest. Ah, you thought I'd start with the simple and work my way up. Too bad. Time to jump right in.

Or download a PDF of this entire post, HERE.

Creating a Nook picture book

Step 1: Open each image in Adobe Photoshop. Resize all of your images to fit within a space 2550 pixels wide by 3242 pixels high, set at 300 dpi. (ignore the screen shot numbers below, just fill in what I specified)


And save as jpg images (do not check the progressive scan option, baseline standard jpg is what you choose). 

 I wanted my images to be the best quality, so don't worry that Nook's screen resolution is actually less than 300 dpi, if you set it to these dimensions, it'll be downsized properly and look tighter. To resize them you can create an action (see help section in photoshop) to rotate & size them all automatically. However, if you first create them at these dimensions, your process in this step will be simple.
I had to rotate my images 90 degrees counter clockwise because I wanted it to look like a real horizontal picture book spread and not a single vertical pageThen the viewer using the Nook just turns the device horizontal to read instead of vertical.

Save all the images in one folder. I named my folder NookKindle because you'll use the same images for each device.  And make sure the files are named so they are in the correct order. For example, I named mine cover, page01, page02, page03 etc. 


Make sure there are no glitches or spelling or formatting errors in your images before moving on.

Step 2: Open Adobe InDesign CS5 (or you can try it in an earlier version...post in the comments if these steps still work for you).
  • Press 'COMMAND N' (cmnd N) for a new document. And Click 'OK'.
  • Press 'cmnd D' to place an image on the page.
  • Choose your file (start with cover.jpg or whatever you named your cover). Click 'Open'
  • A thumbnail image will show up with a little brush. Drag it to the upper left corner and line up with the reddish purple margin and CLICK the mouse button. It'll end up looking like this...going off the page. LEAVE IT as it is. Do not worry. It'll all work out.
  • Save it by pressing 'cmnd S'. Put the files all into a separate folder so they are easy to access later. 
  • Do each of the above steps again and again until you've saved each of your images as a separate .indd document. 
Step 3: Make your book file (using InDesign)
  • Go to File/New/Book or choose Book from the main InDesign Menu Panel and name your book file and click Save
  • In the pop-up window, press the + symbol on the lower right to add your content to the book. 
  • You can select all the files at once by clicking and holding down the shift key, just make sure they are in the order you want them. Then click Open.
  • Save the Book file you just created by clicking the disk icon in the open panel which includes your book files.
Step 4: Export to EPUB
  • Here's where my instructions again vary from VonLogan's. Thankfully, it's simpler. Click on the small dropdown menu icon in the upper right  corner of the book files panel. Click Export Book to EPUB... and save it under yourbooktitle.epub
  • In the "Digital Editions Export Options" panel, under General, you can include data such as your name or company name under publisher and an isbn number if the book has it (those can be purchased but are not necessary)
  • Then click Images on the left and change the jpg size option to High instead of Medium.
  • Click Export

Your book is now ready to upload and sell on the Nook. Go to http://pubit.barnesandnoble.com , create an account, and upload your book. It takes longer to get through the review process for Nook than for Kindle...a full 72 hours. But that's not too bad. Have your bank account numbers and tax id numbers ready when you create your account.

Creating a Kindle picture book

Now that you've created your book for Nook, creating the Kindle book will be easy. You already have all your files ready and in InDesign. If you didn't follow those steps, follow steps 1-3 under Creating a Nook Book. Then, follow the next few steps and it'll be up on Kindle in less time than on the Nook.

Step 1: Download the Kindle plugin for InDesign here 
You must be running Mac OSX 10.5 or later and InDesign version CS4 or later


Step 2: Open your Book.innd file or if you didn't save it, follow step 3 under the nook instructions above.

Step 3: Export to MOBI for Kindle
  • Click Export Book for Kindle... and save it under yourbooktitle.mobi . Click Save.
  • Click Images on the left and change the jpg size option to High instead of Medium.
  • Click Metadata on the left and fill in the information.
  • Click Export

You now have your Kindle compatible file to upload.

Go to kdp.amazon.com (kindle direct publishing) and create a publisher account. Again you'll need all account and tax info handy. Word of caution, they will try to get you to sign up for KDP select. I chose not to because of the exclusivity for 90 days. Just an FYI.

There are many options to review (more than for Nook) concerning royalties, digital rights management etc. I cannot tell you what to do here, except that you should read each thoroughly and then make your choice.

FINALLY the easiest one to create...

Creating a PDF downloadable Picture Book 


Step 1: Resize all of your images to fit within 865 pixels wide by 562 pixels high at 72 dpi. These will need to remain horizontal as you'd want to view them in a normal pdf reader. In this version of your ebook, what you see is exactly what you get. Then Save each image as a jpg in a folder labeled PDF with names that will keep them in the proper order.

Step 2: Open Adobe Acrobat Pro
  • Click File/Create PDF/Merge Files into a Single PDF...


  • Click Add Files and Add Files again, Select the files and click Add Files.
  • Make sure they are in the right order and click Combine Files.
  • And when the next window pops up, just save the file as YourBookTitle.pdf
  • Scroll through the document and make sure it looks how you want it to look (it should if you've prepped it right and then followed the steps). 
  • If there are no changes, YOU ARE DONE! Your PDF is ready to upload for sale.
Step 3: Selling your PDF book
PDF books open in any pdf reader, on computers, on smartphones, tablets, etc. It's nice to make sales this way because no one takes a cut of the profit. You can sell them off your blog, webpage, etc. and use paypal as the money changer. However, I just chose to upload mine to another illustrator's store that she has set up and link to it off my blog. I highly recommend it. Go there and click "create an account" at the upper right. Nice and simple.
Here's the link...


You are now in business. Just a reminder, having an ebook doesn't mean you'll make money...it's got to sell. You've got to market it and most importantly, it has to be good. Best wishes to you! (Let me know if I got any of the above information wrong--thanks!)

If you appreciate this tutorial, I would greatly appreciate positive reviews of my ebook on Nook, Kindle stores and even a download or two of the book. ;-)

89 comments:

  1. My version of adobe is CS1 and it doesn't export to epub. I found a work around but now I don't remember what that is. I'll probably upgrade soon.

    I wonder on which version exporting epub became available.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think it became available on CS4

    ReplyDelete
  3. very cool! Now if only I had some pictures to go with my words...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can do some pics gaylene artistpaul.co.uk

      Delete
  4. It's actually very easy to just publish words only for your novels, Gaylene. I'm pretty sure you can do it from a Word document. I'd check it out.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Excellent tutorial, I was wondering I have CS5 and Acrobat Pro, I already checked and there is a kindle plugin for windows, so I guess its ok if I dont have the MAC, or is anything else I´m missing? thank you for sharing this tutorial Julie :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Oh, I meant for my picture book manuscripts. You illustrators have a foot in the door I'll never have :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. What a great share, thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Very cool Julie! Thanks for putting all of this together, very helpful. Hope the Princesses book is making a big splash!

    ReplyDelete
  9. It totally should work on a PC too. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Well, this is one instance you could find your own illustrator for, Gaylene. But you're right...doing both is an advantage.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is excellent information--thank you!

    My CS4 exports to epub, and I'm on a PC--I don't see why any of the steps would not work equally well on that platform.

    I'm fairly familiar with ID and creating multi-page documents, but very new to epubs. I was wondering why the extra step of creating a separate document for each image in ID, rather than placing each on its own page in a book or document?

    Also, since ID exports directly to pdf, is it really necessary to use another pdf utility?

    I so much appreciate your expanding the discussion, and tips on dimensions, orientation and resolution are great!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I think it has to do with the programming but you could try placing the documents in one book all at once. Let us know if that works.

    The reason for not exporting to PDF directly is that these files are 300 dpi and to make a manageable PDF size they need to be 72 dpi. Even optimizing the PDF when there are 300 dpi files makes it too large of a file size. In addition, there may be people who don't have InDesign and only can create the PDF version right now.

    Please let us know if you find better, faster ways to do any steps. We'll all appreciate it and learn from each other.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ah--thanks, Julie!

    So much to learn . . .

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thank you so much for sharing this Julie!

    ReplyDelete
  15. This is great. Thanks for the excellent info.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Thanks so much for posting this Julie, I will file it away for future use.
    Judy

    ReplyDelete
  17. Who knows, it may be out of date in 3 months with the way technology goes. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  18. Just upgraded to Adobe CS5.5 and can't wait to start publishing. Thanks for the great tutorial.

    I have a question about the Tax I.D. number. Do you use your social security number or did you get an I.D. number through the IRS?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can use your social security number, but I do have a tax ID number because I am set up as an LLC. There is no reason to file as an LLC or sole proprietor until you are making a good amount of money being self-employed.

      Delete
  19. Lol, I'm waiting for industry standards similar to those for print publishing . . .which may never happen, with all the variables in delivery platforms.

    In the meantime, it's so good of people like you, who have wrestled with the process, to share what you've learned.

    Many thanks--and best of luck with your adorable PRINCESSES!

    ReplyDelete
  20. You can use your social security number...what ever you want to file self-employment taxes under. I have my business set up as an LLC so I have a tax ID number.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thank you so much for sharing your process with us Julie.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Thanks so much, Julie, great info. Just wondering when the book's text is added…is it part of the image in Photoshop or can it be added in inDesign?

    ReplyDelete
  23. I add the text in photoshop and save the whole thing as a jpg image. Easier for me that way.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Thanks, that's what It looked like. For anyone who is interested in accessibility features such as VoiceOver on the iPad that reads any text aloud, it won't work with text that is part of the image. In any case, I'm going to link to this tutorial from E is for Book.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thank you SO much for this amazing post! And congratulations and best wishes on your book..it looks wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  26. Wonderful post..many thanks for this, Julie! Wishing you all the best with Princesses!!

    ReplyDelete
  27. I am a writer and i want to publish my book on kindle but i was not known that how i publish my book.This post will help me for publishing my book on kindle.Kindle is the most important tool of providing facility for the people who want to publish their books.

    ReplyDelete
  28. For Lauren Leedy,
    How could I do this and do a voice over or have audio for my children's book? Do you know a programmer or how to do that too?
    Thanks so much!
    I have a children's CD and want to create a book as well.

    Meg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know how to implement voice for the kindle Fire or Nook tablets. We did create a stand alone app that had voice over and highlighted text. We hired a programmer off of elance.com It worked perfectly but cost us about $800 and then $100 to be an Apple Developer and put it on the apple app store. Not worth it to us.

      Delete
    2. Have you looked at MeeGenious.com?

      Delete
  29. @megruss, you can have audio in an iBook, not sure about the other formats. I haven't done it but Liz Castro has a guide called Read Aloud EPUB for iBooks that may help.

    Also, re my comment about text as part of an image being a problem for accessibility, if you can add Alternate text to the image it can be read aloud using that.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Very helpful tutorial. Thank you so much.

    I am on a PC for now and wanted to add a tip for those who are also.

    When you get to step 3 for the "kindle export" and you open the "Digital Editions Export Options" panel , under the "General" section make sure you select your cover through the browse button specifically stated for "Cover Image", it is located directly under "Table of Contents" dialogue box. Other wise your .mobi will be exported with warning messages that there is no cover even though you may have named the cover file as cover.

    Thanks so much,

    Rebecca Brooks-Guelfi

    ReplyDelete
  31. I believe the reason for creating a separate InDesign file for each page is that eBook readers ignore the page breaks within InDesign and treat the book as one continuous scrolling document. In order to create separate pages, in the traditional sense, you need to trick the reader into thinking each page is a new "section".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know. It's kind of annoying to have to do it that way, but that's the way it works. Thanks for the explanation.

      Delete
  32. Wow, this is an awesome resource!

    I just have one question regarding Step 2 for the Nook tutorial: what settings did you use for the new document... Print? And what size did you set it to? I'm presuming you set all the margins to 0 if you're importing full-page JPG's... ?

    Thanks so much!

    Carrie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. see my comment below to answer your question.

      Delete
  33. Great tutorial. I'm surprised how few people are sharing this information on the internet. I've searched and searched for guides on adapting picture books for nook and kindle and haven't really found anything. Certainly nothing as helpful as this. Thanks so much! So my question for you is - have you done any quality checks to see how your books look on a kindle fire vs an ipad vs a black & white nook touch? I'd be very curious how well this one size fits all approach works, especially in terms of text and detail.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. see my comment below to answer your question.

      Delete
  34. CarriBoo,

    It's not imperitive to set it to any size etc. I used the default settings when ID opened. (Print, no margin adjustment, no size adjustment). When it is exported to ebook, the programming doesn't care about that stuff. So just import your image, place it in the upper left corner and let it bleed off edge.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Optional Delusion, With the products changing so readily, it's certainly hard to keep up. However, I have checked it on most of the devices. These are the ones I've tried it on. They all looked great in terms of text and detail and image quality.

    Original Kindle: Black and White. Looks fine as far as orientation and everything go. Sometimes it throws up a blank page between each page. And sometimes it doesn't. I don't know why. I figured not many people would be looking at a picture book on this device and thought it had to be a fluke with the device itself since it didn't always happen. I chose not to worry about it on this device, for $1.49 they can scroll through an extra page if it happens on their device. Very odd!
    Kindle App on ipad and iphone: Looks beautiful, works perfectly. App users just have to remember to lock the orientation on their iphone or ipad for optimum viewing.
    Iphone/ipad pdf reader (iBooks): on these readers you download the PDF of the book to your device and it opens in the pdf reader on your device (like ibooks or adobe acrobat app). Either look great and work perfectly with the pdf version.

    Nook App on ipad & iphone: oriented slightly to the left and lowered leaving a small white margin on the left and top. However, I think if I remove the margin settings from the ID file, leaving no margin marks, and keep orienting the image in the upper left corner, it'll work fine. It wasn't enough of a problem to bother the book though, so I haven't changed and reuploaded it yet.

    Nook Color: No problems. Looks just fine.

    Android Tablet and phone devices: They download the nook or kindle app and open the book or use the pdf reader. My sister says it looks great but I haven't personally viewed it on this device. They too have to lock the viewing orientation on their device.

    Kindle Fire: My dad is checking on this for me (he has one). I'll post an update if there are any issues, but if not, assume that it looks just fine. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  36. Thank you so much for this Julie...a terrific tutorial!
    I will return the favor with kind reviews in the coming week....
    This has been very helpful!

    ReplyDelete
  37. THANK YOU!!!!

    I've been searching high and low for how to do this!!! I'm going through the process right now and whether it works or not, you are awesome!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  38. You are seriously the BEST! I spent hours trying to figure this out and I wish I had come across your step-by-step instructions sooner! Invaluable, thanks!!!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Thanks for the great info...could you tell me step by step how I would add the text that goes along with my pics?

    ReplyDelete
  40. I haven't done that yet. I just include the text as part of the image file so it is exactly where I want it on the page each time. Sorry I can't help you more, Mary. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  41. no worries i figured out the text..just did as you said..uploaded them as seperate jpg files.so they are sep pages..(ie...text..then pic..text and hen pic..however if you knew of a way i could paste them directly onto the pic that would be helpful..

    your instructions worked perfectly got up on kindle ..only issue now is that the pics are b&w how do i get them back to colour?

    thanks in advance

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary, You can get them on the iphone/ipad etc. by doing nothing actually. All those users have to do (any smart phone user actually) is download the Kindle or Nook App for their device. I did put in the description that those people viewing on those devices need to lock their screen orientation into portrait mode before opening the book on their device (because my book had a horizontal format not vertical, so if they turned their device the screen would turn as well).

      Delete
  42. Hi Julie, Fantastic to finally get "How To" help on horizontal ebooks. Many, many thanks! One question: My text/picture book is 80 pages. I've reformatted 25 in ID per your help, and wonder if there's a way to see how they'll look--before committing to all of 'em. Have had a few possible glitches in ID with some images overlapping, others not--even though they're all the same size, and want to be sure they'll all upload properly. Again, thanks for your generosity !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I believe there is an option when you export the file as a kindle book etc. to "view book after exporting." It's a little box you check at the bottom left, after you choose the name to save the file as and go on to the next screen. It'll give you an idea before you go through the whole thing. I don't know if it works. Sorry. Try it out and see. Let us know if you find some way to preview.

      Delete
  43. Thank you so much for the help! Truly invaluable when I was about to give up. One question - did you use any security or encryption when selling the PDF directly from a website?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I began selling the pdf from a friend's site who was set up for that. That site is no longer available. So the short answer is, no. Sorry.

      Delete
  44. Press 'COMMAND N' (cmnd N) for a new document. And Click 'OK'.
    You never give the dimensions the file should be. Could you post this for more clarity?

    Thanks!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I give the dimensions in step 1. 2550 pixels wide by 3242 pixels high, set at 300 dpi
      The adjustments per device are done by InDesign when exporting for each version (nook or kindle). Hope that helps.

      Delete
  45. Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to put together all this information. I really appreciate it. Do you draw on paper and scan the images in or do you create in Photoshop and Illustrator? I have so much to learn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I usually draw by hand, scan, and do some adjustments in photoshop, then I print out the sketch on watercolor paper, paint, rescan and add some other textures color adjustments etc. in photoshop again. I don't really use Illustrator at all. I just learn little by little and from others. That's why I like to try and share what I learn. It's so nice when people are willing to share. Best wishes!

      Delete
  46. Thanks Juile for the great tutorial. It demystifies InDesign a little for me (I'm a photoshop guy mostly). I used this very tutorial to make my 1st children's book "Maddie Mckenszie: The Most ANNOYING Little Sister EVER!" live on Kindle. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009MJ7UZI Though, I wish I could make the text adjustable and perhaps adjusted my size a little. Not a perfect recreation of my original version, but it's still presentable.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Dolores Marie10/23/2012 9:03 AM

    This is an awesome post! I just received my first request to illustrate an ebook and I found your post very helpful. Now if only I had an idea how to price things out -any ideas on that would be helpful......
    On the illustration front: I was wondering what size you do your sketches and whether your sketches are sized to your printer's scanner (say 8.5" by 11") or whether you make bigger sketches and have them scanned elsewhere (or do you have a super big scanner?). I find it gets expensive if I sketch bigger than my scanner bed and go some where else to get them scanned.
    Also, I was wondering what type and size of watercolor paper you use. Further, do you have trouble with the paper feeding into the printer? I want to find a source of watercolor paper that is pre-cut to fit computer printers and so I was wondering if you have found one. Right now I cut my paper to the printer's size (8.5" x 11"). The paper doesn't feed well into the printer. Finally, what kind of ink do you print with on the watercolor paper? All the best to your ebook successes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pricing is set by the industry pretty much. I wouldn't charge over $2.99 and personally I would keep it at about $1.99. The App industry has jaded our perspective on what things should cost.
      Illustrating: I scan in pieces if my sketch is bigger than the scanner. However, I have an inexpensive Mustek Scanner which is 11x17. It works well for sketches. As far as printing on watercolor paper, just any printer won't do. You need one that prints with Archival Inks that are water resistant...like the Epson Photo Stylus printers. Most that do that aren't concerned with the length of the paper either. It's restricted to 13" wide but it can be as long as you'd like. I just cut or tear each piece from a large sheet of watercolor paper...cheaper that way. Good luck!

      Delete
    2. Dolores Marie11/01/2012 8:43 AM

      Thank you for your reply. It is so helpful. I have a Canon MG6220, I'll have to check on whether the inks I use are archival.

      Regarding pricing, I was asked to send a sketch, determine the number of pages and price out my illustrations for a small e-book publisher for a story that they sent to me. Therefore, they want to know how much I want to be paid for the art work I would do for their story. They plan on setting the price for the book when they publish it (however, they did mention the price being around $1.99 to $2.99). I have never been published for my art work before. So I have been trying to research what to do. I have read the Pricing and Ethical guide but don't find it specific enough in the Children's Picture Book section. Hence, looking further, I saw that Amazon.com's self publishing offers Children Picture Book authors the chance to work with an illustrator where the author pays $225 per illustration (I don't know how much the illustrator gets in the end). So far, I have been asked to just provide the images but not construct the e book itself. So I am wondering what you would do if you were me and were asked to price out your art work for a e-publisher that you would illustrate but not actually do all the computer programs that make it a book. Also, if you were me would you require a percent of the price paid per purchase of an e-book as well and at what percent? Do you think the Amazon price is too low for a newbie? I have done the story board and have figured out that the book would be 32 pages long (including the title page and dedication) should I take that into consideration in determining the price? Should I charge a separate rate for the Book Cover and for revision work? Finally, if I am asked to do the computer work that you have described in your post should I charge a separate rate for that work, or how would you charge and how much?

      Delete
    3. Royalties aren't really worth it in ebooks. I would go for a higher flat fee up front. I would simply ask for the $225 per illustration and not worry about the back end. IF you are doing 32 illustrations that adds up to $7200...more than most small book press advances. As long as your total pay is about $5000 or more, I wouldn't ask for a cut on royalties. If you are only doing 16 illustration, up the fee from $225 to make it so you end up with a flat fee of$5000 or more. Most picture books don't earn out their advances anyway and it would take an eternity for an ebook to earn out an advance. Small presses only give you about a 5K advance and large ones about 10K. I consider most ebook publishers small presses.That's what I would do.
      I would charge a separate fee for creating the digitial book for them, and just charge a few hundred more or so.
      It's a new market so you can do whatever you want, but that's kinda how I'd work it.

      Delete
  48. Thank you so much for putting together this tutorial. It was so helpful! :) The step-by-step instructions were easy to follow and I am so excited this worked for me. Again, thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  49. Hi Julie. I am going to try this with my book. Thank you. Did you set up each page file in indesign as one page with a page spread on it? With text?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't place any text in INDESIGN. I simply made a image file with text as part of the image and placed it in INDESIGN.

      Delete
    2. That was what I was wondering.
      Should I make the text part of the picture to ensure placement and fonts look right.

      But you lose the ability to make the fonts themselves bigger. Do you see that as a problem? Or no big deal in this kind of book.

      Thanks.

      Delete
    3. You do lose that ability, but I don't see it as a problem in the books I create because the font is already large and there aren't many words on the page. I'd love a tutorial on how to put words in that are resizeable, and part of the programming not the picture. However, the problem with that is, in picture books, the words are often a graphic element...part of the picture. So programmed text becomes problematic if you want graphic text.

      Delete
  50. Hi Julie why did you use 2550 pixels by 3242 pixels when your book illustrations have clear different proportions ?
    Thanks
    Jack

    ReplyDelete
  51. In my research, this was the dimension which worked best across all ereader devices (so I didn't create separate files for each reader). If you find different information, please let us know. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  52. Hi,
    I too am grateful for this information it has resolves most of my formatting problems except one. I can't get each page to fit the screens of any of the ereaders I've previewed on Kindle before publishing. I have used 2550 pixels by 3242 as you suggested.
    Do you have any ideas?
    Thanks,
    Vivian

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sorry. I don't know what may be wrong. These are the dimensions i used and they worked for me. I'm sorry I'm not of more help on this matter. I wonder if they've changed things recently or if you have the most up to date plug-in for InDesign for converting to Kindle or Nook.

      Delete
  53. Hi Julie,
    You are an inspiration and generous of heart, thank you!
    Question: Have you found a way to incorporate a clickable link (to an amazon page or any other site) on the last page of the children's ebook?
    thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sorry. I haven't found anything on that. However, to be honest, I haven't looked. I simply put the url in the image on the last page. Not as good as a link, but this was before kindle fire came out so people weren't able to go to web pages on their regular nooks and kindles. Best wishes!

      Delete
  54. Hi Julie--
    Thanks in part for your generosity with this info, I was able to publish my first "cartoon picture-poem," called "Valentines are NOT for Me" on the Kindle store! Thank you Thank you! Everything went fairly smoothly. I actually did the Nook version second, and for some reason, after I uploaded it to BN site, the online "preview" did not look right. The images were huge, bleeding off the lower right hand side. I made the jpeg compression, on the second try, "Medium" just to have the overall file size work. Have you had this problem before? Is it just their preview? Thanks very much again for you time and generosity. Charles

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have not encountered that problem. I'm sorry I'm not of any help in this instance. Good luck!

      Delete
  55. Hi Julie,
    I'm a bit nervous to upload my ebook to Kindle as the text may be a bit too small. I previewed it through the Kindle Previewer on my desktop. It came up sideways, and unable to "enlarge"....

    I'm wondering if once I upload it to Kindle, will viewers be able to "pinch-pull" to enlarge the images (if necessary) on their Kindle and Nook readers?

    Is it pretty easy to extract from Amazon or Barns and Nobel once you've uploaded it?

    Thank you!
    Teresa

    ReplyDelete
  56. Great tutorial Julie! Thanks for sharing. One big problem that I've found, with the KDP conversion for Kindle Fire is that the pictures are so compressed and are considerably smaller on the actual screen. To me the end product isn't desirable with the large white frame. It looks fine on the regular Kindle but not on the Fire. I can only assume that most readers will be using the Fire to read a children's picture ebook. Is this your experience with the formatting?
    Thanks
    Cathy

    ReplyDelete
  57. Julie, I think this tutorial is straightforward and well written. Thanks! I have gone through the process of making mobi file for kindle. I was wondering what the size of your mobi files are after exporting from Indesign and whether or not you try to reduce your file size to upload to KDP. Amazon charges $0.15 per Meg for downloading the book. What are your thoughts, experience and suggestions concerning this? Thanks again. Jessica

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They didn't charge when I made this tutorial so I didn't worry about it. I would say, try it by reducing the file size and if you don't like the results you see, upload the newer, bigger file size version to replace it. Although, in the end, I personally would probably still go with the larger size and just chalk the cost up to production and darn inflation. Good luck!

      Delete
  58. I really want my ebooks in libraries. I wouldn't put a limit on how many lends.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's great to have the option to do what you want there. :-)

      Delete
  59. Hi, What a great tutorial, thank you for sharing. My sister wrote several children's picture books that I am illustrating and we used this tutorial to get one of the books ready for the Nook. When my sister tried to upload it to the nook store she was alerted that the ebook limit was 20MB. Our book is 172MB. Did you ever have this issue? I formatted our book using this tutorial. Any suggestions as how to reduce? Our book is a 16 page picture book and the text is part of the picture. Thanks in advance for any ideas as to how we correct our problem.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm. I'm not sure what happened in the steps, because I followed these steps and my 16 page book turned out to be only 4.7 MB in the epub file. Did you make sure the images were jpg and follow the pixel dimensions? I guess my only suggestion if you followed all this to the T is to save the images at 150 dpi instead. Sorry I don't know exactly what went wrong for you. Let me know if you figure it out.

      Delete
  60. Thank you so much for this post, Julie! I used to export to epub in InDesign before but for some reason, I started having trouble with the book I was formatting for someone. I was looking at so many help forums, including the ones on the Adobe site and even the Nook and Kindle sites! Yours was the easiest and the one that worked!

    I noticed the post before mine about Bridget's book being 172 MB. I'm wondering if she remembered to convert her files to jpegs or if not, to RGB files. I remember having that issue on a project once and my files wound up being huge because I had pasted in my PSD files and not jpegs. I think CMYK images are also larger than RGBs.

    Thank you so much again =)

    ReplyDelete
  61. Hmmmmmm. I'm not sure what I might have missed here, but the EPUB file (saved from ID) that I'm looking at on my Nexus 7 is A. Huge (64Mb) and B. Huge (goes off the edge of the viewable area).

    In both cases I'm not surprised because each 300dpi JPEG is around 9Mb and 2550x3242 pixels is much larger than the recommended (minimum?) dimensions of 1400 pixels (on the longest side) that I'm seeing everywhere...

    Am I NOT supposed to be previewing the "raw" EPUB locally, but uploading all 64Mbs of it to B&N for their code wizardry to do its thing? ie: Are they somehow formatting what we're sending them?

    (And some places have a maximum size of 2Mb! Impossible for a picture book.)

    My understanding was that outputting the EPUB from ID would yield...a formatted book!

    Any advice?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This tutorial is now very old and I have not created an ebook since...because this one never earned a whole lot for me. It quite possibly could be very out of date. Yes my file was huge, but amazon and B&N nook compressed them as needed. Someone else mentioned that their ebook looked too small on the kindle fire when they followed my instructions (which would mean theirs wasn't big ENOUgH). However, I have seen my princess book on all Kindle Devices (even the kindle HD) and it works fine and looks fine. I don't know what the others actually put in for their numeric values but these worked for me. I was taught that if you went smaller the image wouldn't look right on the higher res screens. So the short answer is, yes...amazon and B&N format them from this file you submit. I don't know what places you are talking about that need 2MB files. This tutorial is only for Kindle and Nook ebooks. Good luck and let us know if you figure something out that I don't cover here.

      Delete
    2. Ah OK, that might explain some of it (I'm also using a much newer ID & EPUB export tool).

      But the tutorial was still very helpful, thanks for putting in the work!

      Delete