View Full Version : Step-By-Step Guide to ePub creation


ghostyjack
03-24-2009, 11:19 AM
I'm interested in learning how to manually create ePub format books but am having difficulty in finding information on what exactly I need to do.

I've looked through the forums to see if anyone has created a guide, but I can't see one.

Can some point me in the direction of a guide.

I know there are tools (like Calibre) but I would like to be able to understand what they create as I will need to customise them after creation.

Also I enjoy the manual work needed to create them. I always find more satisfaction in doing the work myself.

Any help is appreciated.

AnemicOak
03-24-2009, 11:37 AM
Don't know if any of this will be of help or not...

Here is the format spec...
http://www.openebook.org/2007/opf/OPF_2.0_final_spec.html

Here is the packaging spec...
http://www.openebook.org/2007/ops/OPS_2.0_final_spec.html


Here's a write up done on Teleread that might have some useful info...
http://www.teleread.org/2007/10/31/experimenting-with-epub-creation/


Also the Mobil Read Wiki has some good info...
http://wiki.mobileread.com/wiki/EPUB



I know it's not really the step-by-step guide you asked for, but I don't think I've seen one.

jgray
03-24-2009, 08:46 PM
Something I originally posted on TeleRead some time ago:

http://www.zianet.com/jgray/articles/Teleread1/index.html

Jellby
03-25-2009, 08:36 AM
What I used when I started with ePUB: http://www.jedisaber.com/eBooks/tutorial.asp

And little by little I've added some tweaks to my ePUB files. You can unzip one of them ("The Prince and the Pauper" is a good one, since it has embedded fonts too) and see how it's done. They are all hand-written, so everything there is is there because I added it (not because it's the default of some program).

The only thing missing is creating the final zip file. I pack the mimetype file without compression (zip mybook.epub -0 mimetype) and then add the rest of the files (zip mybook.epub -rDX9 META-INF OEPBS).

ghostyjack
03-26-2009, 05:35 PM
Thanks guys,

That lot looks to be able to provide me with a fair bit of info and if I reverse engineer an ePub file, should get enough info.

gernblanston
09-28-2009, 12:36 PM
What I used when I started with ePUB: http://www.jedisaber.com/eBooks/tutorial.asp

And little by little I've added some tweaks to my ePUB files. You can unzip one of them ("The Prince and the Pauper" is a good one, since it has embedded fonts too) and see how it's done. They are all hand-written, so everything there is is there because I added it (not because it's the default of some program).

The only thing missing is creating the final zip file. I pack the mimetype file without compression (zip mybook.epub -0 mimetype) and then add the rest of the files (zip mybook.epub -rDX9 META-INF OEPBS).
This is a very useful post, as I'm just starting to figure out epub. Do you have a link to a 'perfectly' tagged ebook, or a sample that you've created? I'm creating a book that has few images and strait text.

Thanks!

Jellby
09-28-2009, 01:22 PM
Try this: The Prince and the Pauper (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=34347).

gernblanston
10-02-2009, 02:47 PM
Try this: The Prince and the Pauper (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=36493&d=1253904662).

This is very useful - thanks - esp. how to center the image. I'm using ID and I can't get my images to anchor in the correct spot on the epub page after conversion -- it always ends up at the end of the chapter! And so does the cutline/caption!

Anyone else having this issue?

Jellby -- is the tag that you used treat the image like text?

Thanks

GeoffC
10-14-2009, 12:49 PM
What I used when I started with ePUB: http://www.jedisaber.com/eBooks/tutorial.asp

And little by little I've added some tweaks to my ePUB files. You can unzip one of them ("The Prince and the Pauper" is a good one, since it has embedded fonts too) and see how it's done. They are all hand-written, so everything there is is there because I added it (not because it's the default of some program).

The only thing missing is creating the final zip file. I pack the mimetype file without compression (zip mybook.epub -0 mimetype) and then add the rest of the files (zip mybook.epub -rDX9 META-INF OEPBS).


anyone having problems with the link - i've been trying to access the tutorial without much luck ... :chinscratch:

Jellby
10-15-2009, 10:28 AM
I just tried now, it works for me.

GeoffC
10-15-2009, 10:32 AM
Yep, thanks Jellby can access this Okay now .

I've been looking at others this morning and it's surprisingly "straight-forward" ..... :chuckles:

My only problem now is I currently use ADE to look at my productions and so far I have a 'problem' with one file that Sigil created and is okay according to Valloric....

pholy
03-22-2010, 11:05 PM
The only thing missing is creating the final zip file. I pack the mimetype file without compression (zip mybook.epub -0 mimetype) and then add the rest of the files (zip mybook.epub -rDX9 META-INF OEPBS).

I just found that I have to use (zip mybook.epub -DX0 mimetype) to pass the epubcheck. Otherwise I get an error about extra field length being 28 instead of 0.

Dwayne Smith
04-13-2010, 12:13 AM
Hi Jellby,

I had a look at your Prince & Pauper ePub and it seems to offer the embedded font as an alternative addition to the main style sheets — with the alt.css being called from within the style.css (presumably when embedded fonts are supported) — is that right?

I'd love to use this approach in the ePubs I'm working on. Is it as simple as it looks? (main css, alternative css and embedded fonts in OEBPS; then referencing all these in the Manifest) — Or are there complexities I'm missing?

Many thanks for any advice you care to offer.

d.

Jellby
04-13-2010, 05:34 AM
I had a look at your Prince & Pauper ePub and it seems to offer the embedded font as an alternative addition to the main style sheets — with the alt.css being called from within the style.css (presumably when embedded fonts are supported) — is that right?

I'd love to use this approach in the ePubs I'm working on. Is it as simple as it looks? (main css, alternative css and embedded fonts in OEBPS; then referencing all these in the Manifest) — Or are there complexities I'm missing?

It's almost like that, but not quite. alt.css is referenced in style.css through an @import clause, and it will be read in all circumstances, as long as @import is supported, it does not depend on whether embedded fonts are supported.

The only reason for putting the embedded fonts stuff in a separate CSS file was to make it easier to disable it if needed, just by commenting out the @import line in style.css. Other solutions would imply a larger edit of CSS files, or modifying every XHTML file.

MichaelCampbell
04-13-2010, 05:31 PM
I'm using ID and I can't get my images to anchor in the correct spot on the epub page after conversion -- it always ends up at the end of the chapter! And so does the cutline/caption!

Floating images in ID will end up at the bottom. Solution: select the image and cut it, then paste it into the text so it becomes an in-line graphic. Paste your caption right below it in its own paragraph. They will now both flow with the text and anchor into position. It's best to have the graphic in its own paragraph.

Dwayne Smith
04-16-2010, 02:07 AM
Thanks for your response Jellby.

That's brilliant. Presumably there are no instances where embedded fonts are supported but @import is not.

Unfortunately I'm going to have to postpone such cool tricks until I can work out how to get the (expletive) embedded fonts recognised in the first place.

d.

Almiel
08-18-2010, 01:12 AM
I just found that I have to use (zip mybook.epub -DX0 mimetype) to pass the epubcheck. Otherwise I get an error about extra field length being 28 instead of 0.

I followed the zipping instructions at http://www.webvivant.com/zipping-epub-files.html with great success. This is especially useful for mac users because it addresses the hidden files that mac creates in each folder.

virtual_ink
06-28-2011, 10:54 AM
Hi all, I'm new to the forum, working at a small publishing house and have been tasked with converting our print books to ebooks. I usually typeset the books so am already working in InDesign, and i have some basic HTML experience. I'm embracing the new challenge by reading Liz Castro's Straight To The Point guide and watching the InDesign CS5 epub training videos on Lynda (although we are on CS5.5), i'm learning a lot of great stuff but so far I haven't found a simple solution to some of my most basic queries.

For starters, how do I create a section title and a chapter title that will each split the epub into separate files/chapters? I want sections to appear as parent items in the toc, with chapters as children, but CS5.5 will only allow me to split the document defined by one paragraph style, so if I set the toc style up the way I'd like it, the epub doesn't split the way I would like. If I strip out our design elements and start all new sections and chapters with the same header, I get the right splits, but the toc and the page design are compromised.

I guess I can edit these later, but if there's an easier way to do this - any tips would be much appreciated!

AuthorGreg
07-14-2012, 01:53 PM
Anyone know where I can download the Prince and the Pauper file now? The link posted here is invalid.

Thanks,

Greg

Pablo
07-14-2012, 02:44 PM
Anyone know where I can download the Prince and the Pauper file now? The link posted here is invalid.

Thanks,

Greg

You should find it here:

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=34347

AuthorGreg
07-14-2012, 04:40 PM
Thank you, sir!

StoryEnthusiast
07-16-2012, 09:00 AM
Wow, there's so much info on how to create ePub step by step. This is exactly what I was looking for. However, following links seem not working any more.

Here is the format spec...
http://www.openebook.org/2007/opf/OP...inal_spec.html

Here is the packaging spec...
http://www.openebook.org/2007/ops/OP...inal_spec.html

Toxaris
07-16-2012, 12:23 PM
You can find the specs at the site of the IDPF: http://www.idpf.org

Both the ePUB v2 and ePUB v3 specifications can be found there.