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Monthly Archives: July 2012

I’m working really hard, not on 2 but 3 projects!

Hi all,

It’s been quite a busy time for me, I’m finally calming down after the whole publishing of Magical Roads. If you want to check it out, just go to my website: Magical Roads.

And I’ve written a guide on how to properly format your book for the kf8 format (the new kindle format that works on the Kindle Fire and the Kindle touch and baby). A lot of people are not aware there are a lot of books that are formatted wrongly and show up poorly on the Kindle Touch. Most people don’t know why this problem exists or how to solve it. I’ve written this guide with a lot of pictures so it’s easy to follow. You can find the guide here: Formatting your file KF8 proof.

But that is not what I wanted to talk about. What I wanted to talk about is the other side of my writing, the side you normally don’t really see. The part where I write pieces that are longer than 2000 words and don’t immediately put them online.

Read the rest of this entry »

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How to format your project KF8 proof. Why do you need to?

I will make two guides on how to make your manuscripts KF8 (kindle format 8) proof, one for how to get the formatting right BEFORE you upload to KDP and one that shows how to do this with the file Amazon has on the server. These guides will only cover the basics: a few formatting options, how to create a TOC and other things. If you want tables and pictures this is not the right guide for you (unless of course you understand how to do this in HTML). I’m mostly focusing on the large part of the Kindle books which are simply novels and stories.

 

Why might you need to make changes to your manuscript? Well, ever since KF8 went into place a couple of months ago quite a few people have complained about formatting problems on their Kindle Touch (and sometimes the small Kindle too). The main problem seems to be that fonts (text) are displayed waaaaay too small.

Here is an example of Wool which has/had the formatting error (these pictures are made by David Edwards who I thank a lot for it since I totally forgot to take a screenshot of my own book when it had the error still):

Kindle font size 2, but the book shows a lot smaller size.
Which shows a kindle size 6, which in this book shows only as a size 1.

 

 

How does this problem happen? In the last week I’ve bought 6 books, 4 of these had the problem, all released since Amazon put KF8 in place. Yes, it does happen that often with new releases.

For readers this is really really annoying as the size of the font is usually about 4 or so sizes smaller than it should be, which means to have a reading size of 4 you need to have your kindle at the largest font size possible. When you (like me) often switch between new and old books this is really annoying and more than once I’ve put a book down because of it.


What seems to be the problem, ebook wise? The problem seems to be that KF8 no longer allows any coded changes to the font, like font-type, font-size and things like that. In the past this was no problem apparently, but it is now. Since it does show up normally on the software Amazon gives you to check your formatting, and apparently all the other software like the Kindle for PC and the Kindle for different tablets, people don’t realise that the problem might exist in their books.

I have checked Amazon and they do talk about this. But honestly, how many people check the Amazon guidelines and how many people check guides that are easier to understand?

Yeah, you guessed right, almost all people, and since it shows up normally in the checking software Amazon offers no-one sees it until they load it onto a Kindle Touch. And even I checked the Amazon guidelines, I used their conversion software and everything, and even I got the problem. But since I knew I checked on my Kindle Touch too.

 

Why am I making this guide? The reason is not fully altruistic 😉 I like my books formatted well and I want other people to be able to read my books without having this problem. If by offering this guide I can help 1% of the books that have the formatting issue right now and 1% of them in the future I will be a happier person (and probably a lot of people with me).


How to check if your book is still right? If your book is published or updated since April 2012 I would advise you to either check it for yourself on a Kindle Touch (just downloading a sample will suffice) or ask someone else to check it for you.

If you got out okay, just remember the new guidelines next book. If the formatting is in trouble stay put, I will update the guides soon, expect them in a few days.

 

 

Write on!

 

Kia

 

 

Isn’t there another solution? There apparently is, but that involves turning your book into an epub and messing around with the formatting part of that. I find this to be a lot more confusing and I’ve never made epub before. If done right this guide shouldn’t take too long and you can check your formatting on the go.

 

For those who understand some HTML coding, this is a very quick guide I wrote to explain what I did. I will rewrite it for the guide so also non-techy people should be able to understand it.

Post on Kindleboard with a quick solution

 
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Posted by on July 6, 2012 in formatting guide, Writing

 

Smashwords Summer/Winter sale! List of writers (12 july update)

Hi everybody, this July Smashwords runs once again a summer/winter sale (depending on if you live on the North or South part of the earth).

While the sale runs I will keep updating this list with people I know who are participating, so feel welcome to drop a message 🙂

100% off / free. Coupon code = SSWIN

Kia Zi Shiru (yes, that is me, I’m also joining in) with Magical Roads, a magical realism/fantasy young adult short story collection. Available at: Magical Roads

Simon Haynes has a lot of works on different parts of the sale. His short stories are all free: Hal Spacejock: FramedA piece of the actionThe DesolatorLoss LeaderNo ReplyThe ProjectFizz!!!Yard FailThonn DayUpdownBilly’s Book.

Katie Salidas has her hot story collection up in the sale: Vampire Bites.

Red Haircrow also joins in on the fun. Their story The House of Doom, Dreams and Desire is for free with the above coupon.

50% off. Coupon code = SSW50

Nephylim has two of her novels on sale this month. Her Enigma series are an amazing read, so check them out here: Enigma(Enigma book one) and Fighting the Man(Enigma book two).

Joan Szechtman also has her two novels of her series about Richard III in the 21st century on sale. This Time and Loyalty Binds Me are interesting reads!

Michael Drakich put his fantasy book The Brotherhood of the Piaxia into the sale. Check out this epic fantasy novel.

Simon Haynes has collected his short stories into collections, these collections are also in the sale: Collect One & Collect Two.

25% off. Coupon code = SSW25

Andrea Trask has two short story collections available. One is a horror collection called Nightmare Fuel: volume 1 and the other is a collection with erotica shorts called Bits of Bliss.

Simon Haynes also has his novels on sale. Hal Spacejock 2: Second CourseHal Spacejock 3: Just Desserts, Hal Spacejock 4: No Free Lunch. It seems that the original Hal Spacejock novel is always free, so check it out!

There are of course a lot more books available, so check them out here: Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale.

For writers that want to participate, check out here: How to participate. (and of course, leave a message here so I can add you to the list)

I also made a twitter list of people I see come by that also participate, so check out this list to find even more writers! -> Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale twitter list

Read on!

Kia