Converting to eBook

I have a couple of manuscripts I’d like to convert to eBook format. AKA, I think I’m going Indie.

I have Scrivener 2.0, and see it’ll export eBook, but I’m not sure if I can use the same for Nook, iBooks, and Kindle. Pointers? Yeah, really new at this. I’m looking for Scrivener pointers - and also tip and thoughts on what I should include inside the eBook. If there are sites you can direct me to, that’s fine.

But wow. If Scriv can convert to Nook, Kindle, and iBook, I can’t imagine anyone NOT owning Scrivener.

Most readers out there today can read either .epub or .mobi, which are the two formats Scrivener supports (not counting PDF and HTML which are also used as eBooks in some cases). The big, well known readers all support one of these. The Mobi format will be useful on older devices, like PDAs and older smart phones, as well as any Kindle generation. ePub is supported by most of the other readers on the market today.

Download Calibre and Sigil. :slight_smile: They are both free or donate-ware.

These tools will be quite useful in an e-book publishing setup. Sigil is an ePub editor, and so will let you fine-tune whatever output Scrivener generates. Think of it as your word processor for e-books. Unfortunately editing .mobi files is less straightforward. There is a good tool for it by the Mobi group, but none that I am aware of for the Mac (so if you have Parallels that’s an option), but honestly the output straight out of Scrivener is quite good—and you may find you don’t need or want to edit anything after compiling.

Calibre is just an all-purpose multi-format tool, reader, convert, etc. It’s good for “bug checking” your e-books to make sure the ToC is working right and that everything looks good. I don’t think Scrivener needs to be able to convert books. It’s a book maker, note a file format converter, and there are already some great tools for converting between dozens of formats.

Thanks so much, Amber!

Like I said, the novels are complete, and I know where I want to be - just not sure how to get there and have something professional looking.

I’ll download the other tools and give this a try. I have an iPad and I have some relatives and friends who own Kindles (and I have the Kindle app on the iPad), so it’ll be interesting to see how it all looks.

And when I’m done formatting, there’s the cover and the inside cover, too. But first, baby steps.

From Amazon you can also download (for free) the Kindle app for your Mac, so you can take a look at your ebooks there as well and see how they appear. It’s still obviously not quite the same as looking at them directly on the eReader, but it’s a good way to proof things (particularly .mobi), like Calibre. Stanza’s another one, but I haven’t really compared it with Calibre to know if it’s easier or more of a pain to use.

Thanks! I have an iPad with the Kindle app on it, so maybe that’s a better way to check it?

I also came across a YouTube video on Scrivener 2.0: Exporting to an eBook. Unless I’m wrong, it really looks like Scrivener might do all the work for me! :smiley: I have to download Kindle Gen (name?).

The video also gave me a link to check the ebook for formatting errors.

Has anyone uploaded an eBook for sale on Amazon (or Nook, etc) using the method above?

Sure, as a first pass. But different isn’t the same. If you’re going to publish for Kindle you have to check your work on a Kindle. It does some horrible mangling to text formatting; in particular, large tables that look fine on real computers get broken up in unimaginable (and sometimes unreadable) ways on the device.

Thanks, Pete! I’ll have a friend with a Kindle check it out. The work is fiction, so I won’t have tables or other graphics in the book. Well, the cover art, but that’s it.

You can also download the Kindler Previewer to your Mac: … 1000234621

This is different to the regular Kindle for Mac application. The regular Kindle for Mac is designed to give a decent reading experience on your Mac; the Kindle Previewer is designed to give you a preview of exactly how your text will look on a real Kindle. Of course, it will still be best to test it on a real Kindle, but you can test it on the Kindler Previewer to look for any obvious problems before getting your friend to check it out.


Thanks, Keith! I appreciate it. I have the Kindle app on my iPad, so looks like I’ll check out the book on the Kindler app, my iPad, and have a friend look at it on their actual Kindle.

I won’t be able to do the same for Nook, as I don’t know anyone with a Nook. I can download the app for the iPad, but that’s about it.

At least I can verify how it’ll look in iBook format. :slight_smile:

It’s lots of work being an Indie! LOL! But thanks so much for Scrivener, which seems like it is going to same me loads of formatting time.

There is a Nook iOS app as well, though viewing on a real nook is likely to show the same issues as with the Kindle. Likely you’ll be imitating the Nook Color with the iPad, rather than the e-paper version which would have the most display issues, I would think.

Still, it’s a fine way of testing how their programmers parse epub books.