View Full Version : How do I make a TOC for my Kindle book?


petercrowell
04-06-2011, 02:30 PM
Hi,

I'm new to Kindle publishing and to this forum.

I working to publish my kindle book. It's all text and I'm not interested in fancy formatting. I've uploaded the word file at the kindle direct site, converted successfully to html, an downloaded the html file.

I've also cleaned up the html manually and it's getting close.

I want to include a TOC that is clickable so it takes the reader to the selected chapter. I also want the progress indicators at the bottom of the screen to work accurately with the chapters.

I've read a bit about the toc.ncx file but I'm a little lost. Exactly what files to I need to create and how do I upload them to the kindle site?

Thanks so much for any help you can give me.

Adjust
04-06-2011, 10:21 PM
This is the "ePub" subsection of the Forum.
Take a read over at the .mobi subsection
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=168

ATDrake
04-07-2011, 02:54 AM
There are two kinds of TOC that go into making a Mobi file.

The first is the HTML TOC, which will give the clickable links inside the book. This can be incorporated into your regular text if your book is all in one file, or you can put it into a separate file, if you prefer.

Just write it up as a standard HTML document with links to the relevant places in your book, and list it in the OPF file the way that the Kindle Publishing Guidelines (http://www.amazon.com/kindlepublishing) say to do so.

The second kind of TOC which gives you the flickable chapter marks is created via the NCX, which is otherwise invisible when reading. This will be a separate file from your main text.

The KPGuidelines give you the info on how to structure and list this file in the OPF, but the Wikipedia page on ePub (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EPUB#Open_Packaging_Format_2.0.1) will give you a nice example file for both, and links to the official specs if you want to know more detail.

To sum up, only three files are needed to provide both clickable and flickable TOC in Mobi:


an HTML file with the sort of TOC that you'd expect to see at the front of a paper book
an NCX file to provide the chapter markers
and an OPF file to let the Mobi-generating software know about both of the above and include their info in the resulting file.

Hope this helps, and welcome to MobileRead!

petercrowell
04-07-2011, 09:18 AM
This is the "ePub" subsection of the Forum.
Take a read over at the .mobi subsection
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=168


Sorry about that. My bad. I thought ePub was the correct format for Kindle. Or at least that it worked with Kindle.

So, .mobi is the right format. Thanks for that.

Is there a universal format that will work with all readers? Especially Kindle, iPad, Nook?

petercrowell
04-07-2011, 09:23 AM
ATDrake,

Yes that helps a lot! Thank you! Thanks for all those resources. I'll be digging in today.

If I may, one other question. When all three of those files are prepared, how do I upload them? Do I zip them up and upload the zip file?

I'm sure the answer to this is elementary, but the question has me confused.

Thanks again!

st_albert
04-07-2011, 11:51 AM
Is there a universal format that will work with all readers? Especially Kindle, iPad, Nook?

Maybe PDF, but you SO don't want to go there! :smack:

petercrowell
04-07-2011, 12:04 PM
Maybe PDF, but you SO don't want to go there! :smack:

Thanks St. Albert. I guess that means each reader has its own format?

DaleDe
04-07-2011, 01:29 PM
Thanks St. Albert. I guess that means each reader has its own format?

If you are talking about reader as software then yes, there are many formats. If you are talking about hardware devices then there are basically two camps, Kindle and everybody else. Kindle uses a slightly modified mobi format from mobipocket (Amazon owns them) and most eBook readers these days offer ePUB as the standard. Some of them only support ePUB and perhaps PDF while others have support for up to 20 formats or so but they all have ePub in common. To get a good idea of what the eBook readers are all about you should spend some time in our wiki. It is specifically devoted to mobile reading and provides information pages that are useful for mobileread users.

Adjust
04-07-2011, 10:20 PM
You really can't go very wrong if make everything for .epub

You'll then be able to convert to .mobi via KendleGen.

These two formats will cover 90% of the readers out there

ATDrake
04-08-2011, 12:51 AM
If I may, one other question. When all three of those files are prepared, how do I upload them? Do I zip them up and upload the zip file?

Honestly, I've no idea. I don't make Mobi books commercially; I just fix the more messed-up ones that I've acquired.

However, I do know that Amazon's publishing program is supposed to be able to accept a pre-made Mobi, so you could look into using Mobipocket Creator (http://www.mobipocket.com/en/downloadsoft/productdetailscreator.asp) or KindleGen to make a "finished" e-book and test it in Kindle Previewer (both available @ same link as KPGuidelines) to make sure it looks okay.

I think it might also accept an ePub, and agree with the other posters upthread that making an ePub and converting to Mobi will help cover most of the available e-readers out there.

But I've never bothered to check, though I'm sure Amazon's publishing site FAQs will have the info if you poke around it a bit.

Hope this helps.

petercrowell
04-08-2011, 07:07 AM
Dale, Adjust, ATDrake, and Everyone else,

Thank you all so much for your responses. I obviously have some research to do and some decisions to make.

You've given me plenty to get started on. I'm sure to be back for more help.

Thanks again! I'm very glad to have found Mobilreads.

Peter