Updated June 2017.

Want to know how to format your Word document before converting it into an eBook? Here’s how to prepare your manuscript for eBook formatting.

So you finished writing and editing your Word Document. It’s ready for the next step: eBook formatting.

Curious about the difference between fixed and standard eBook layouts? Struggling to put images in your eBook?

Here are 10 articles from the BookBaby archives on all things eBook formatting:

1. eBooks 101: Standard Vs. Fixed Layout
One of the most frequent questions we get asked here at BookBaby is “What’s the difference between a fixed layout eBook and a regular eBook?” Here is your answer!

2. Fixed Or Standard Layout For Your eBook?
For many BookBaby authors, understanding the nuances of eBook formatting – like fixed vs. standard layout – can be a challenge. Our eBook Conversion team plays an important role, converting manuscripts from programs such as Word or Pages into formats that work on eReaders.

3. eBook Formatting: How to Properly Indent Paragraphs
Can you guess the common eBook formatting mistake authors make when preparing for ePUB conversion? You should NOT use the tab key to indent paragraphs.

4. How to Insert Page Breaks When Formatting an eBook
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a hundred times: there is no fixed pagination with an eBook. However, you CAN designate where you want page breaks.

5. What Kind of Margins Should My eBook Have?
What kind of eBook margins should you set up for your eBook? The short answer: small and uniform!

6. What Font and Font Size Should I Use for My eBook?
When it comes to eBook fonts, your best bet is to stick to standard fonts and let your readers choose the size and style they like best.

7. eBook Formatting: What Page Size Should I Use?
What page size should you use when preparing for ePub conversion? Standard 8.5 x 11″ page size ensures any included images will be large enough for an iPad.

8. 6 Tips for Formatting Images for An eBook
If a picture’s worth a thousand words, a correctly formatted image can be priceless! We often get inquiries about image formatting, so here are a few tips to make sure the images you are using for your eBook are eReader ready.

9. Common eBook Formatting Mistake: Spaces in the File Name
Here is something you want to avoid when preparing your file for eBook conversion.

10. Text Justification in eBooks
I assume you have perfectly good justification for every decision you’ve made in your writing… we’re talking justification in eBooks of the content, including text and pictures.

11. Bonus! Excerpts from BookBaby’s guide, 5 Steps To Self Publishing:

There has never been a better time to self-publish
Book Formatting and Cover Design Make Your Manuscript… a Book
eBooks and Printed Books: Why Not Both?


Do you have any tips of your own? Do you have any questions about eBook formatting that haven’t been answered by these articles? Let us know in the comments section below.

Let BookBaby help you with all your eBook needs!

 

Hybrid Author Game Plan

Chris Robley

About Chris Robley

Chris Robley has written 571 posts in this blog.

is an award-winning poet, songwriter, performer, and music producer who now lives in Portland, Maine after more than a decade in Portland, Oregon. His music has been praised by NPR, the LA Times, the Boston Globe, and others. Skyscraper Magazine said he is “one of the best short-story musicians to come along in quite some time.” Robley’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in POETRY, Prairie Schooner, Poetry Northwest, Beloit Poetry Journal, RHINO, Magma Poetry, and more. He is the 2013 winner of Boulevard's Poetry Prize for Emerging Writers and the 2014 recipient of a Maine Literary Award in the category of "Short Works Poetry."

12 thoughts on “The Top 10 Articles on eBook Formatting

  1. Jacqueline Murphy says:

    Chris, I have spent days doing research on how to build my eBook. Some how I came across your information and it all clicked. Thank you for your simplicity but accuracy of information. I now feel confident and can begin the process.

    Again thank you,
    Jacqueline Murphy

  2. Pj says:

    Good articles, but would like see some articles on how best to set up endnotes and bibliography pages in ebooks.

  3. johnny says:

    can text and illustrations laid out in ‘wordpad’ or ‘apache open office’ be converted to epub/mobi?

    1. Wendy says:

      Amazon wants ebook submissions in html. OpenOffice will save directly as html, but if you have illos, check that it didn’t do something strange (look at what you saved in “web view” after you saved it) when you saved it. I had a high-illo book, and OpenOffice was so screwy about the conversion that I had to open a new “web view” document and cut-and-paste my “print view” copy into it piecemeal to get it to look halfway decent.

  4. Cori Wamsley says:

    This was invaluable! Thank you!

  5. Robert Asconi says:

    Hi Chris
    I have a soft covered book about 90 pages. Can I scan it and turn it into an E book?

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