Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Kindle epub's so easy, a computer illiterate (me) can do it. Right?

Last week, I decided to epublish an illustrated story I'd finished.  Kindle made it sound so simple.  I thought, even a computer illiterate, like me, could do it. 

On Monday:
I found Kindle's epublishing site: Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), awesome! https://kdp.amazon.com/self-publishing/help?topicId=A2J0TRG6OPX0VM Its page had 3 tabs.  I read, clicked and reread everything.  Any techno lingo I didn't know, I researched (I asked my family or Googled it).  It was an intense exploration day. 

On Tuesday:
I had the grand idea of releasing my ebook for epublication on Friday, my birthday.
I began preparing my text for the book (that's formatting in techno lingo).  Everything needed to be converted to JPEG.  What is JPEG?  My photos and illustrations were on tif and png.  How could I convert my illustrations and photos into JPEG?

I saw that there was a place for making a book cover for my book.  Hmmm, JPEG again?  I also needed to add a title to my book cover.  I had learned how do that when I had played around with GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program), a free web download program. 

The Kindle directions for the book cover were easy enough to understand.  I succeeded and had a nice JPEG ecover for my book.

On Wednesday:
I learned to convert all things to JPEG.  I downloaded my story into Kindle's KDP.   The download was successful!  I did a preview.  The skeletal shape of the book looked pretty good, except the book was in black and white and none of my images showed up.  Heartbreaking!  What could I have done wrong?  I had followed all the instructions.  Would the images show up once I had published the book?  (I was on "save draft" book mode.)

I went back to my story.  I tried to fix the errors I found in my ebook story.  I submitted the story again.  No luck. 

On Thursday:
I gave up thinking my story would be in ebook form for my birthday.  My husband suggested that I pay someone to transform my story for electronic publishing.  I gave it some thought.  Surely, if Kindle gives the public instructions on how to epublish a manual, it's not impossible.  I researched some more.  I watched videos on  how to use Microsoft Word.  Maybe I was becoming techno savvy (maybe just a little bit).  Research, research, and more research.

On Friday:
The day of my birthday I had tunnel vision - all things were Kindle.  Then, Hubby called. 

"Why don't we invite our parents out to dinner to celebrate your birthday?" he asked.

"No.  I don't want to.  I'm too immersed in this Kindle stuff." I answer.

"How about lunch with our parents on Saturday?" asks Hubby.

"No.  I mean, I can't think.  I don't know.  I can't think right now. Okay, but not lunch.  A brunch.  Okay?"

"At what time?" asks Hubby.

"Look.  I can't talk.  Sorry.  I'm all wrapped up in this.  Sorry.  We'll talk when you come home for lunch.  Love you. Bye."

After the call, I realized I needed to walk away.  I needed a break.  When lunch time came, Hubby took me out to lunch.  I talked about everything but Kindle.   Went to my favorite eating place. We had a nice time together.  We set the time and place for the birthday brunch.

Once home, I researched some more until... (to be continued)

Tomorrow's Blog:  Finding the Holy Grail of epublishing on Kindle.


  1. WHAT! Don't leave us hanging! Did you figure it out? Did you manage to squeak it through under the wire of your birthday? How can we possibly wait until tomorrow to find out how this ends? :)

    1. Yes, Susanna I really did turn my story into a Kindle ebook. I have to wait 12 hours to see it on the Kindle Bookshelf. This action will verify, for me, that it can be done. Once, that's finished I will post where I got the complete, awesome, user friendly instructions for epublishing on Kindle.

  2. LOL! Too funny! I know I get absorbed into learning new things that way too. (Happy belated Birthday by the way.) and I haven't quite figured out the Kindle yet either, although I am working on it as I have some cookbooks I am trying to publish.

    1. I have figured out how to epublush a book with full color images. I will let the secret out tomorrow. :)

      I'm glad you thought it was funny. No, I didn't make my birthday deadline, but I sent the file to Kindle today. Let you know tomorrow if I'm happy with the results. I'll also give you the complete clearly understood instructions on how to epublish your books for the Kindle emarket.

  3. I'm glad you finally celebrated your birthday, but I totally get the obsession once you get into trying to learn something new. WAiting with bated breath to see how it all turned out for you!

  4. I'm waiting, too. I hope the information I have on epublishing Kindle books will help all authors wanting to take the leap into self-publishing electronically.