The Making of an eBook Part 4: Coding 090

Friday got too busy and I didn’t manage to post my weekly installment, so you’ll get more than one this week. For today, I want to begin taking a look at how one actually codes an eBook, with the help of Bill Jones, the book designer and eBook builder for my publisher, BOA Editions.

To start off, I’ll just show you Bill’s outline for the process he’ll go through to turn my collection, Cradle Book, into an eBook.

* Receive the Word file from BOA. Go through this file to see if any styling has been applied and also remove things like double spaces, blank lines, and that sort of thing.
* Format the book in InDesign using styles for all formatting (use pdf for proofing with BOA and the final pdf goes to the printer)
* Export to Dreamweaver
* In DW create the linked table of contents, css style sheets, add the page breaks and other Kindle codes working entirely within a single folder for all files
* Zip that directory and send that file to BOA (you can also email this to your Kindle to read it)
* For Kindle, BOA goes to the Amazon DTP and signs into their account and submits the zip file through their Dashboard with additional publication information (Title, Author, Price, etc.) This will place the publication on the Kindle store
* For ePub and Kindle open the zip file in Calibre and convert to ePub and/or Mobi.

Ok, so in the next few posts, we’ll take a look at some of that coding behind my book, as well as at Calibre and some other options for turning all your stuff into the right kind of files. Bill Jones points out that, in his experience “there are no clear instructions about how to do anything,” so an eBook coder must be intrepid. More soon.