Do you ever wonder (or are you currently struggling with) how you can
convert your trade books, journals, whitepapers, instruction manuals and
such from a “designed for print/PDF” InDesign format to a digital eBook
for the iPad bookstore, the Amazon Kindle, the Barnes & Noble Nook,
and other devices? Then I think you’ll love this.
Last month I completed recording a new Lynda.com video tutorial title (2, actually) which I’d been planning (read: researching and revising, sweating buckets over) for over a year. “InDesign to EPUB, Kindle, and the iPad” was the most difficult title I’ve done to date because the field is changing so rapidly! Every week or two there would be new publishing venues (e.g., Google eBooks), new software programs (Sigil), new rules (I’m looking at you Apple).
Finally in January of this year I took the advice of my Lynda.com producer, the ever-patient Kirk Werner, and simply applied a temporary stoppage on further research. Gah! It killed me. But that was the only way I could actually sit down and develop the course and its sample files. In February I went in and recorded TWO versions of the title, one for InDesign CS5 users and one for InDesign CS4 users.
InDesign CS5 to EPUB, Kindle, and the iPad
InDesign CS4 to EPUB, Kindle, and the iPad
I hand-picked the free sample movies, so even if you don’t have a Lynda.com subscription, you should be able to learn a few things. Or, use my Lynda.com free 7-day trial for full access to all the movies.
From Creating to Selling
As usual, I like to start from the beginning, the questions I hear all the time from experienced designers and publishers: What’s an eBook, exactly? What’s the difference between a PDF and an EPUB? What format are Kindle books? How do I buy these things, how do I read them, how do I proof them without buying every device?
Then we go through prepping the InDesign file, exporting, tweaking, and testing. All that fun nitty-gritty stuff like how to create drop caps and pull-quotes, what software to use on Macs and PCs for editing EPUB files, what are some different approaches to creating Kindle books, how can you check to make sure your EPUB file passes validation checks.
Ffinally, I dive into the topics that I’m curious about myself, but I haven’t seen covered yet: Getting an ISBN. Creating publisher accounts on the Apple iBookstore, the Kindle store, and other resellers so you can upload your books and sell them there. How much do they pay and what if you’re not in the U.S.? Selling eBooks on your web site or blog with ecommerce services that specialize in digital goods.
If you’re interested in any of these topics, you should know that I also teach it (on-site or over the web); and have created an InDesign to EPUB syllabus, both a one-day and a two-day format, roughly based on my Lynda.com title. Contact me or my Training Coordinator, sherri [at] senecadesign [dot] com (Sherri Austin), to learn more.