KDP and Reconversion


The new Content menu on the Kindle is no longer the Table of Contents… I blogged about this recently, but I’m still upset by it.  On the iPad (Kindle app) that content menu shows the TOC that I construct manually and I do this for every file I format.  But now the new Kindles show the NCX table of contents which picks up the heading styles (h1, h2, h3) from the file and uses those to guide people through your book.  However, when you upload a mobi file (that’s the format that Amazon uses) to KDP (the Amazon platform) they convert your mobi all over again. And any futzing with a finished product you know can introduce unwanted things.

On our new book, Stone Bay (http://amzn.to/1eL74Fq), our first novel from A Thirst Mind publishers,  that perfect little mobi file that we spent so much time on got tweaked by KDP on re-conversion. Now the Epilogue, instead of being an h2 style is now an h3… so that means the two excerpt headings for Stone Cold and Stone Heart are h4 heading styles. No problem you say? Well, actually the NCX only picks up the first 3 heading styles… see where this is going? Those two excerpts disappear from the Content menu on the Kindle.  They of course don’t disappear from the book and you can still reach them through the actual Table of Contents which is in the text of the book… but I’m disgusted. You work so hard to make things perfect… and then they’re not!

I had to tweak the mobi file anyway to add a live link to the phrase about ‘leaving a review’, so I made sure that the guide features were correct, and that the headings for the Epilogue and Excerpts were h2 and h3 respectively. Nary an h4 in sight! We’ll see what happens and if I get comments from readers.  The changes looked good when I previewed (before KDP re-conversion) on my Kindle Fire, but who know what will happen after?

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About athirstyblog

If you're a published author and are sitting on a basement full of backlisted books, then you've found the right blog. Although I formerly filled these pages with book reviews, they will now be filled with tips on eBook formatting, talk about the current technology of eBooks, and other stuff that interests me and hopefully interests you. I'm currently an eBook formatter, formerly a bookseller, archaeologist, illustrator and lover of all things historical and scientific. And I'm now a permanent citizen of DownEast Maine with my own beach and 175 year old house and everything! Come along for the Journey!
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