View Full Version : Creating Professional Looking Epubs


Big McLargeHuge
04-28-2012, 08:42 PM
I have a few paperbacks i want to turn into epubs. But i want them to look as if i bought them from B&N or Amazon or something. Pictures of the publishers symbol, exact formatting of the book, exact Font sizes and spaces and things like that... Any easy way to do this?

Like, how do i turn the paperback of this:

Deadhouse Gates (Book 2 of The Malazan Book of the Fallen) [Mass Market Paperback] (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Deadhouse-Gates-Book-Malazan-Fallen/dp/0553813110/ref=pd_sim_b_1#reader_0553813110)

To look as good as this ebooks formatting:

Deadhouse Gates [Kindle Edition] (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Deadhouse-Gates-ebook/dp/B0031RS6PU/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&m=A3TVV12T0I6NSM#reader_B0031RS6PU)

I'm from the US by the way, the UK version is just formatted better.

Also, how do you get chapters like this?:

Chapter 1
Part 1
Part 2
[Etc...
Chapter 2
Part 1

Thanks in advance.

JSWolf
04-28-2012, 08:55 PM
You don't need to do chapters like that. You just do it in toc.ncx and it will work very well in ePub.

Big McLargeHuge
04-28-2012, 09:00 PM
Well, this may be a bit silly, but i want to make them look nice haha. :o

Also, i meant:

Book One:
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Etc..

DaleDe
04-28-2012, 09:10 PM
Well, this may be a bit silly, but i want to make them look nice haha. :o

Also, i meant:

Book One:
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Etc..

You can certainly do that if you want inline TOC that is part of the book but for navigation purposes most people use the separate file that can be popped up anytime you need it. It will also support nested TOC. Of course you can have both!

ePub can typically do better than anything Kindle can do for formatting except the Kindle Fire KF-8 format which is really ePub anyway. You might want to start with Sigil, a free download that can accept HTML file input and allows you to control the formatting exactly as you want it to be.

Dale

mrmls
04-28-2012, 09:11 PM
To turn paperback into epub you need to scan the book, apply OCR, then fix OCR mistakes, and then create an epub and format it.
For OCR the best choice could be Abby FineReader, but it's a commercial product, need to buy it.
For epub creation - Sigil, which is available for free.

It will take a lot of time to make it perfect, especially if doing for the 1st time.

The other way is to buy Kindle edition, remove DRM and then convert mobi to epub. Which is like 10000 times faster. But DRM removal has legal restrictions.

JSWolf
04-29-2012, 09:11 PM
To turn paperback into epub you need to scan the book, apply OCR, then fix OCR mistakes, and then create an epub and format it.
For OCR the best choice could be Abby FineReader, but it's a commercial product, need to buy it.
For epub creation - Sigil, which is available for free.

It will take a lot of time to make it perfect, especially if doing for the 1st time.

The other way is to buy Kindle edition, remove DRM and then convert mobi to epub. Which is like 10000 times faster. But DRM removal has legal restrictions.

Actually, since Deadhouse Gates is already available in ePub, it would be easier to buy that, strip the DRM and edit the ePub so it looks as wanted.
http://www.kobobooks.com/ebook/Deadhouse-Gates-Book-Two-The/book-7qlPGWgwJU-QpGo935KT0Q/page1.html?s=XuFLGgMklkG-kYXc0OSUGg&r=1



DRM removal is a grey area. It's unknown if removing the DRM for personal use is illegal. And until it's proven in a court of law, it will never be known 100%.

Kaylee Skylyn
04-29-2012, 10:09 PM
To address your question about the Part one, chapter 1 ect I also was looking to do that and posted in another post how I found what I was looking for:

To quote: "So for my example I found an example of what I wanted to do; have "Book1" with child "Chapter 1" ect then "Book2" with child "Chapter 1" ect in my copy of "White Fang" by Jack London (from FeedBooks) (http://www.feedbooks.com/book/3533/white-fang) that was already in my library. (but is it a GOOD example of how to do this? I'm assuming so but you tell me.)"

So take a look on how they do it in White Fang (shows up properly in the TOC) and that should answer that part of your question.

HarryT
04-30-2012, 03:35 AM
The abbreviation for "et cetera" is "etc.", not "ect.".

JSWolf
04-30-2012, 08:44 PM
(IMHO), a professional looking ePub uses toc.ncx and does not have an internal ToC. Also, it has proper indents and no like spaces between paragraphs except for section breaks. It has small to no margins and it has smallish spacing for ToC headers.

dwig
04-30-2012, 10:13 PM
(IMHO), a professional looking ePub uses toc.ncx and does not have an internal ToC. Also, it has proper indents and no like spaces between paragraphs except for section breaks. It has small to no margins and it has smallish spacing for ToC headers.

I agree.

The only time an ebook should have an inline ToC is when it is a book that might be read in some non-linear fashion. Such books would include non-fiction books that discuss multiple topics (e.g. histories, textbooks, ...) or collections (e.g. short story collections, omnibus editions, ...).

The only time a single-story/topic book should have an inline ToC is when it is, or tries to be, a facsimile of a particular paper edition. An ebook for general reading should not attempt to mimic paper layout and typographic conventions that don't apply to ebooks.

AnemicOak
04-30-2012, 10:19 PM
(IMHO), a professional looking ePub uses toc.ncx and does not have an internal ToC. Also, it has proper indents and no like spaces between paragraphs except for section breaks. It has small to no margins and it has smallish spacing for ToC headers.

So do all ePub readers (devices & apps) support the toc.ncx now? Because IIRC that hasn't always been the case, making an inline TOC useful.

JSWolf
05-01-2012, 02:08 AM
I agree.

The only time an ebook should have an inline ToC is when it is a book that might be read in some non-linear fashion. Such books would include non-fiction books that discuss multiple topics (e.g. histories, textbooks, ...) or collections (e.g. short story collections, omnibus editions, ...).

Actually, there's still no reason for an inline ToC. toc.ncx supports multiple levels of contents. So if it was an omnibus, each book would be the top level and under each book would be all the ToC entries for each book.

The only time a single-story/topic book should have an inline ToC is when it is, or tries to be, a facsimile of a particular paper edition. An ebook for general reading should not attempt to mimic paper layout and typographic conventions that don't apply to ebooks.

But because an inline ToC is not easy to get to, it is really a waste of space. The external ToC can be gotten to very easily. So really, I can't see a reason to have an internal ToC unless you need to have more information in the ToC then the external ToC can handle.

JSWolf
05-01-2012, 02:10 AM
So do all ePub readers (devices & apps) support the toc.ncx now? Because IIRC that hasn't always been the case, making an inline TOC useful.

iBooks does. ADE does and that includes ADE based readers. Bluefire does. I would think Alkido and Manato (sp?) for Adroid would as I've not read they don't.

Most do it seems. It's just the odd ones that might not. And given that there are ones that do for just about every platform that has an ePub app/program, it's not really an issue.

dwig
05-01-2012, 11:02 AM
The only time an ebook should have an inline ToC is when it is a book that might be read in some non-linear fashion. Such books would include non-fiction books that discuss multiple topics (e.g. histories, textbooks, ...) or collections (e.g. short story collections, omnibus editions, ...).

Actually, there's still no reason for an inline ToC. ...

Yes there is a reason. The inliine ToC serves as an addenda to the title page by giving an easily read list of the several titles included in the collection. Its purpose is not so much to the a linked ToC, in fact I don't feel links are necessary. If a title page is not a "waste of space" then inline a ToC of this nature isn't a waste either.

mrmikel
05-02-2012, 09:52 AM
It seems to me an inline TOC does no harm and since it is only electrons we are wasting, why not, if the creator wishes. If someone doesn't want to bother to read it, then they can use epub toc to jump directly to the first chapter.

I think it may provide the new ereader user with some level of comfort by being similar to what they are already familiar with.

JSWolf
05-02-2012, 11:36 AM
It seems to me an inline TOC does no harm and since it is only electrons we are wasting, why not, if the creator wishes. If someone doesn't want to bother to read it, then they can use epub toc to jump directly to the first chapter.

I think it may provide the new ereader user with some level of comfort by being similar to what they are already familiar with.

Most fiction pBooks do not actually have a ToC between the cover. So really, a ToC is an added luxury and since it wasn't there in the first place, the reader could not have gotten used to it.

JSWolf
05-02-2012, 11:39 AM
Yes there is a reason. The inliine ToC serves as an addenda to the title page by giving an easily read list of the several titles included in the collection. Its purpose is not so much to the a linked ToC, in fact I don't feel links are necessary. If a title page is not a "waste of space" then inline a ToC of this nature isn't a waste either.

The external ToC works very well for "giving an easily read list of the several titles included in the collection".

+Book 01
+Book 02
+Book 03
+book 04

Then when you go to Book 01 and expand it, you get all the ToC entries for that book. It's a lot easier then having to jump around to 4 different internal ToCs. Plus, it looks nicer, works better and is easier to get to.

The way you suggest means we have to go to the external ToC to then have to jump to a page in the book to then jump to someplace else. That's extra hassle not needed at all.

dwig
05-02-2012, 01:26 PM
The external ToC works very well for "giving an easily read list of the several titles included in the collection"....
The way you suggest means we have to go to the external ToC to then have to jump to a page in the book to then jump to someplace else. ...

You seem to have totally misunderstood my posts. I'm sorry if I worded them poorly.


I am not suggesting that the "inline" ToC be in any way a replacement for the "proper" ToC.
I am not suggesting that the "proper" ToC be in any way reduced or abbreviated so that jumping to the inline Toc is ever necessary.
I am not suggesting that the "inline" ToC necessarily has active links; its having them is merely added functionality.


What I'm advocating is that omnibus editions and collections of short works have a secondary title page in the form of a list of the included titles, the "contents" of the edition, and that this text exist in the primary flow of the book just following the main title page. This way the reader encounters the list without having to even know the book is a collection and without having to take the several step action required with most readers to access the "proper" ToC.

DaleDe
05-02-2012, 10:34 PM
What you suggest is perfectly ok. JSWolf always gets way out of shape at the mere mention of an inline TOC and of course everyone in the world should always agree with him.

Dale

JSWolf
05-02-2012, 11:35 PM
What you suggest is perfectly ok. JSWolf always gets way out of shape at the mere mention of an inline TOC and of course everyone in the world should always agree with him.

Dale

In an ePub, there is no link to an internal ToC like there can be for Mobipocket. So the internal ToC isn't very useful. The external ToC has a nice easy way to get to it.

huebi
05-03-2012, 03:54 AM
In an ePub, there is no link to an internal ToC like there can be for Mobipocket. So the internal ToC isn't very useful.

Please read the user manual of your PRS 650 again.

JSWolf
05-03-2012, 10:19 PM
Please read the user manual of your PRS 650 again.

What are you on about? If there is an internal ToC (page of links) there is no easy way to get to it like there it with the external (toc,ncx) ToC. If you think I am wrong, prove it.

Jellby
05-04-2012, 08:08 AM
There is the possibility of having a "toc" item in the "guide" of an ePub, but I don't know if there is any reader/program that makes use of it.