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Book: CONNECT with KINDLEGEN by Stephen G Winter

Book: CONNECT with KINDLEGEN by Stephen G Winter

categories: Book, Image Presentation, Scene Breaks, Ncx Contents, Drop Caps, Templates, Kindle ebook, Kindle Formatting


Stephen G Winter

Author Stephen G Winterabout this book: I write fiction, both novels and short stories, so a non-fiction book is new territory for me…but this is one that really needed to be written.

Working on my first novel in 2007 was back when you could get free advice from the delightful Miss Snark and POD-dy Mouth, advice which had everything to do with genre and style but nothing about the technicalities of ebook construction. The latter was left to freelancers more interested in their next project than responding to requests about formatting and readability after they were paid. I lived through the standalone Mobi compiler until that one was finally deprecated by Amazon (who then significantly improved the application, hung onto the name and attached both to Kindlegen output).

I finally got into HTML & CSS convinced by someone to then submit my files to a third-party compiler…seemed to show such promise, except for the collapse of formatting on the page following a page-break, which unfortunately always occurs before each chapter. But you get the idea: I was ready to try anything, even a solution I'd heard about but sounded so hyper-technical and deliberately difficult—Kindlegen is a command line program that harkens back to DOS, which has no user interface except for the one we provide for ourselves.

But after landing on a blog site and coming under the spell of Alicia Ramirez's Kindlegen discourse and doing a little more investigation, I decided to give it a try. I even discovered a nifty way to overcome the ordeal of Kindlegen's command line and figured I could update my coding skills as an extra incentive. Starting out with an HTML / CSS manuscript it took me all of 2 days to successfully compile my updated HTML files using Kindlegen and then view the new Mobi file (actually, its KF8 component) in the also new Kindle Previewer 3. I went on the Previewer's navigational tour where throughout the formatting looked great and stable as all get out. And, as you might suspect, the kindle book I'm now promoting was created via Kindlegen.

CONNECT with KINDLEGEN will quickly show you how to gain possession of several template files that will assemble—via Kindlegen—into a verifiable ebook template. A graphic presentation of these files is available in CONNECT with KINDLEGEN beginning with the section: Viewing the Templates. Upon closer inspection of the files you will see how the structure can be easily extended to accomodate an entire novel (I've accommodated my novels Time's Deceit, Gyre Straits this way and a collection of short stories, LONDON 1963). And while the Kindlegen process may at times seem complex, once completed that process will be yours evermore—

The template files are supplied gratis and you should feel free to use them to create your own ebooks for sale and, hopefully, large readership & personal profit. So, go ahead and make these files your own!

Stephen Winter
July, 2020

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