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ebook Q&A

This Thursday, I plan to roll out a novel that's dear to my heart and years in the making, Zero Hour!

Because I intend to leave the original draft online to read for free, I wanted to make the paid version significantly different. A whole lot of editing went into it to weave the story together more tightly and give several of the events a more logical cause and effect flow, but I wanted more than just a revamp of the text. And I decided the story had a Wizard of Oz/Alice in Wonderland type of quality to it that was just crying out for illustrations.

With the book's formatting, getting the six illustrations to function the way I want them to across multiple platforms and devices has not been fun. I'm thinking I want to put a little extra information about "Which format should you buy?" so that readers can pick the format that best suits the way they see themselves using the file.

What types of things would you still wonder if I told you the following:

The mobi is optimized for Kindle viewing, and recommended if you will be reading on a Kindle, and can also be read on a desktop app such as Kindle for PC
The epub is optimized for Sony and Nook, and can also be read on iPad/iPhone or a desktop app such as Adobe Digital Editions
The PDF has higher resolution images best suited for reading on a computer, netbook or iPad (turns out the graphics won't show up on iPad, but the ePub works very well. Thanks for testing it, Andi!)



( 35 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 28th, 2011 12:55 am (UTC)
The book looked awesome on my Kindle. I love pdf too, as I love having a back up. I buy pdf and convert to mobi.

Congrats on getting Zero Hour done - I loved it and the illustrations are a wonderful touch. I look forward to reading The Starving Years and the upcoming Magic Mansion - love magicians.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:15 am (UTC)
The Kindle was the easiest to format in this particular batch. The device had fewer styles wreaking havoc with the mobi layout.

I had a great time at the magic show today but it really wore me out.
(no subject) - andy_slayde - Jun. 28th, 2011 01:30 am (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 28th, 2011 12:57 am (UTC)
What about Kobo-esque devices? I have an Astak Mentor, which is the same thing as the original Kobo.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:11 am (UTC)
It looks like a Kobo should support either ePub or PDF. Will you test and let me know what looks better?
(no subject) - egret17 - Jun. 28th, 2011 01:19 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 28th, 2011 01:56 am (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:05 am (UTC)
I have a Sony eReader, which does show jpg images, but not within a story. I downloaded a story with illustrations from Word, but they didn't come up on screen within the story. I'd be very interested to see if the illustrations in your epub version of Zero Hour show up.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:10 am (UTC)
Oh, me too! I'll send you a test file when I have it ready.
(no subject) - neyronrose - Jul. 1st, 2011 03:46 am (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:30 am (UTC)
I buy both the mobi format and also the PDF bc I use both my kindle and iPad to read on so I get both.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:52 am (UTC)
The mobi came out well right away. (At least something did, ha ha. The epub was a bitch.)
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:41 am (UTC)
I'm interested to see how it looks on my Nook. I have the plain old black and white Nook, bought it about two months before Nook Color came out, sigh...

However I do also like lit format for my computer. I read a lot of books sitting right here. Is it going to be available in lit?? Will that work with the pics?
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:51 am (UTC)
For your computer, the resolution of the PDF files would probably be much better. The line drawings will look more crisp.

I will build the lit file from the epub file, and I could only take the pictures up to 710 px high without the Nook menus and progress bars overlapping them. So to blow up a 710-pixel image on your desktop would just make the graphic look softer. Still viewable, just not optimal.
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:43 am (UTC)
I don't have any questions. Just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for releasing a new novel just in time for me to read over the holiday weekend. Bless you!
Jun. 28th, 2011 01:53 am (UTC)
Why thank you! I was going to give myself until friday to get it together, but then I realized probably lots of people will take off for long weekends before then.
Andi Lea
Jun. 28th, 2011 02:00 am (UTC)
I wonder which is best for the iPad. I would probably go with the PDF and higher resolution.
Jun. 28th, 2011 02:13 am (UTC)
I was thinking that, too. I don't have an iPad to test it on yet but will probably grab one next month.
(no subject) - angelwolf2003 - Jun. 28th, 2011 06:55 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 28th, 2011 11:28 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - essayel - Jun. 28th, 2011 01:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 28th, 2011 03:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 28th, 2011 02:47 pm (UTC)
I prefer ePub as I have a Sony reader and iPad so the format works on both. PDF is good, althouh I always convert it to ePub as the pages don't always fit well if I need to enlarge the print size. The main problem I find with PDF is that if the name/title and page number are on the PDF version I end up with these halfway down a page, which can be off putting
Jun. 28th, 2011 03:40 pm (UTC)
Maybe you can be my ambassador of "here's why you need to try a reflowable file." All these reasons!
(no subject) - tizzzzez - Jun. 30th, 2011 06:40 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 30th, 2011 12:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 28th, 2011 05:57 pm (UTC)
I think that covers it.

I have a Kobo too, and I don't think I've had a problem with any ePubs I've bought (besides weird formatting/typing errors that pop up when I'm buying books that have been converted into ebooks, which isn't really a format problem at all, just sloppy. :'D)

Lynn Flewelling did a short story book with a whole bunch of fanart a while ago and it worked just fine. I think ePubs are fairly forgiving.

PDFs on the Kobo however almost never work out well for me, but I'm running the software version it came with, so that could just be me.

Edited at 2011-06-28 05:58 pm (UTC)
Jun. 28th, 2011 07:58 pm (UTC)
The issue I encountered was that I could control the epubs' stylesheet but not the stylesheet of the device, which overrides it. Usually that wouldn't matter. But when it shoves the graphic off the bottom of the page to insert header space, it matters. I got around it by not putting the graphics in their own sections, like I did on the mobis. It makes them less navigable, but the only other options was, "Screw it, leave 'em out." That would've been a shame. It was a lot of fiddling and thinking. :(

I guess now I know.
(no subject) - punday - Jun. 28th, 2011 08:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 28th, 2011 11:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 30th, 2011 12:13 pm (UTC)
What types of things would you still wonder if I told you the following:

I'd buy the ePub for my Sony reader, but will you also have an RTF or HTML file available for this title? When I'm reading on my desktop PC, I prefer to open in WORD so I can manipulate the font, font size, page color, etc. (my eyesight sucks).

If all these different file types are available, will buying the ebook make them all available for download or do I need to buy one of each format?

The "must buy each format separately" thing will make me hesitate and wait until I can buy it from somewhere I can get multiple formats. The reason for this is that while Calibre is a good converter, when converted to RTF format for opening in Word, the paragraphs can tend to go a bit wonky and I wind up having to reformat manually to make sure it's right.
Jun. 30th, 2011 12:25 pm (UTC)
My shopping cart doesn't have the capability of letting you download multiple formats, but I'd be happy to arrange that with you privately. Thanks for asking!
(no subject) - tameiki - Jun. 30th, 2011 12:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jordan_c_price - Jun. 30th, 2011 01:04 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tameiki - Jun. 30th, 2011 01:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
( 35 comments — Leave a comment )

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