Centered Content Indented even w/Ruler Zeroed

I’m in the final stages of preparing my first e-book for publication to Amazon’s Kindle store. My novel includes a few images, specifically 1 cover thumbnail to advertise a free novella, and 2 full size illustrations. There is centered text on my cobbled-together ad page, and in a few places in the manuscript. I’m also attempting to employ epigraphs as chapter openers, using the Preserve Formatting box to isolate the custom indents.

Upon compile, it appears that the majority of centered elements, including text and all of the images, are picking up a paragraph indent that throws off the centering.

This despite painstaking effort to “zero out” the indents on those pages, and ticking the Preserve alignment box under Text Formatting Override Options.

The attached screen shots will (hopefully) show the way I’m attempting to set things up in the binder, and demonstrate that my text and image placeholder tags are aligned centered. First and second line indents are set to zero. The “Placeholder X” folders are there to give me greater control over which documents will ultimately display a title in the table of contents, etc. The “Placeholder X” folders are not ticked for inclusion themselves.

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 3.28.47 PM.png

I’m not sure where Compile is grabbing the phantom indent from, or if maybe something weird is going on because I’ve got a handful of Preserve Formatting epigraphs scattered throughout the text? Also of note is that the front matter appears to be centering correctly, but those documents are benefiting from having the “As-Is” box ticked.

Hopefully this is enough information to get the ball rolling–please help!

On the Ruler (COM-R) have you eliminated the indent on those items you want perfectly centered?

Select item to be centered — a single word, an image, a whole paragraph — and move the small rectangular indicator to flush left. Centering the item will then give you a true, not an off-set center.


Yes, I have eliminated the indent for the centered items. I can see that the indent is zeroed out on the ruler in the editor (reference screen shot in my original post). Further, when I select all and bring up Format > Text > Tabs and Indents, the values are set to zero.

I’ve compiled the manuscript as a PDF in order to demonstrate the off-center output:

This is the clearest example I could drum up. I was hoping to get a shot of some ordinary centered text with the phantom indent, but it isn’t terribly obvious in the PDF. When viewing as a .mobi file on a Kindle, however, the bad centering is clear–and on my iPhone screen with the Kindle app it is quite glaring and distracting.

This is my first e-book so I’m still an enthusiastic amateur when it comes to all this–hopefully I’m just missing something obvious in the compile settings. Any thoughts?

I apologize. You did indicate that rule setting and I overlooked it.

No real answer, as it’s a condition I’ve never encountered.

Just out of curiosity, do any spacing/alignment anomalies show up if you select a correctly-centered item simultaneously with an off-center one, as for instance in the second screen shot above? Any unwanted spaces before or after an item?


Thank you for the quick reply, PJS. It is I who apologize if my response came across as pointed. I’m always humbled when I reach out from the depths of the writing cave and discover there are so many people willing to jump in to try and help.

In answer to your inquiry, a quick look at Format > Options > Show Invisibles reveals no unwanted spaces gumming up the works:

Screen Shot 2016-02-29 at 9.16.05 AM.png

This issue seems to have appeared very recently, when I tried to get fancy by inserting images, dialing in the formatting on the epigraphs, etc. This morning I ran a test compile where I unchecked all of the chapters that include epigraphs (with their strange-and-mysterious-to-me Preserve Formatting boxes), in case that was somehow the culprit. Unfortunately, the centering problem remains unsolved.

Amazing how little issues like this begin cropping up like weeds the moment you give yourself a deadline for publication.

CJ —

This has dropped down the list and may not be recognized as a continuing problem. You could try re-posting, this time to Bug Hunt (Mac). It may not actually be a bug — could be a glitch in your system — but it’s worth a try. Just include as much info as you can.