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Old 10-10-2011, 01:12 PM   #1
peterpullman
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NEED HELP! (using Calibre for a specific purpose)

Hello:

I have tried converting my Word document -- a scholarly music biography --with Calibre, so that I could upload it to Kindle for sale.

I chose Calibre because I found that I could embed my endnotes with it. I just highlight a word or phrase of my text, and a balloon pops up, asking if I want to add a note. I insert the endnote (citation) that corresponds to that word or phrase and, voila! The note is supposed to be set there, accessible to any reader of my book who clicks on the word or words highlighted. (Those who are not interested in such detail just keep on reading.)

I have no prior experience with e-books, so something that I'm doing wrong has stopped me from getting my book to Kindle.

Is there anyone in this community who would be interested in walking/talking me through Calibre, so that I can get e-published?

I will be happy to work out an arrangement for compensation.

Thank you.

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Old 10-10-2011, 03:51 PM   #2
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Old 10-12-2011, 10:32 AM   #3
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Where is it that you are inserting these notes? On your kindle? or in the e-book viewer in Caliber? Or somewhere else? Calibre ITSELF has no book editing function, so I'm somewhat confused what you're trying to say.

It is possible to include links and notes in an e-book before conversion, by including them in the HTML, but identifying the editor you're using would be a help.
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Old 10-14-2011, 11:50 AM   #4
peterpullman
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rboatwright:

I am trying to understand the difference between Mobipocket and Calibre. One is a software application while the other is a writing program -- is that correct?

You can see from my asking this the level of understanding that I have.

Someone who has a Kindle-prep tutorial on the internet asked me to send a chapter of my book. I did so, and it was returned to me in what I now realize was a Mobi file. Yet the person had just discovered Calibre -- she admitted that she knew nothing about it -- and thought that it might help me.

I then opened the file that she had sent, thinking that I was using Calibre. I discovered a function where, if I highlighted a word, I could then add a note to it. I did so for all of the endnotes (NOT footnotes) in that chapter. I thought that it was Calibre that enabled me to add them. The finished file looked great: I clicked on a highlighted word -- the line in which it appeared had a red symbol in the margin, indicating that a word within the line could be clicked on -- and the note appeared. It then disappeared when I finished reading it and clicked "close".

But when I reopened the file the next day, the notes were gone.

I don't understand this and, at this point, don't much care. I just want to incorporate my endnotes in my manuscript, with a program that will make them easily accessible to readers who buy my work for their Kindles.

Would working with me on this interest you -- are you someone with expretise who does such work for hire? If you are unclear about what endnotes are, I can explain.

Please respond; I'm eager to get this process going.
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Old 10-17-2011, 01:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterpullman View Post
I am trying to understand the difference between Mobipocket and Calibre. One is a software application while the other is a writing program -- is that correct?
Mobipocket is a company that sells software for reading its own format (MOBI) ebooks on PDAs, phones, etc. It was purchased by Amazon, who uses the MOBI format on the Kindle line of ereaders. Calibre is software for managing an ebook library. It has a reader component, conversion components for changing the format (including to/from MOBI format), a database for accessing the ebooks and sending them to ereader devices, etc.

Quote:
Someone who has a Kindle-prep tutorial on the internet asked me to send a chapter of my book. I did so, and it was returned to me in what I now realize was a Mobi file. Yet the person had just discovered Calibre -- she admitted that she knew nothing about it -- and thought that it might help me.

I then opened the file that she had sent, thinking that I was using Calibre.
You weren't using calibre unless you'd installed it.
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Old 10-19-2011, 06:40 AM   #6
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Calibre can't do the thing you described (popping up a balloon where you can eneter a note). You must have been using another program or maybe a web application.
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Old 10-21-2011, 01:08 AM   #7
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When you opened the file the woman sent you, you opened it with some as-yet-unknown program. We have no way of knowing what program you used to open that file.

If you open it again, you can go to Help and then ABOUT in the menu, and it should tell you what program you were using.

In any event, the program you were using was an ebook READING program, not an ebook editing program. It provided a way for you to enter your own notes about the ebook you were reading, and if you had run it correctly, you could have saved those notes along side the ebook. But in no circumstance would they have become PART of the ebook.

Now for the part you are not going to enjoy, and probably not understand.

If you want to upload your book to Amazon for sale on Kindles, it is going to have to be formatted as an AZW or MOBI file (they are different names for the same thing.)

There is no direct conversion possible from Word to Mobi or AZW. Mobi and azw files are stored internally as HTML documents, the same as web pages. So in order to convert your word document to a Kindle file, the program (like calibre) doing the conversion has to first convert it into one or more web pages.

The problem with that is, Word has lots of functions that simply do not translate well. For example, on the Kindle, you can not specify a typeface or a font-size. You have only limited ability to do things like drop caps and so forth. Formatting of bibliographic entries is primitive. Even formatting of inset quotations is limited.

So, word is the WORST POSSIBLE editor to use to create your book in. :-)

Now, just like on web pages, it is possible to have LINKS embedded in your kindle document which would jump your user to a definition or a note or something. Then you can have a back-link to jump you back.

The Kindle format does not support "pop up" definitions. The person READING the book can add notes to the book which appear as pop-ups, but you don't have the ability with ANY editor to do that at the time the ebook is distributed by Amazon.

getting into more detail comes into the "either go do a lot of research, or pay to have someone help you" stage. There are any number of excellent tutorials on creating mobi/azw files... I suggest you start by reading those.

One of the best techniques I know of is to use Calibre to convert your word document into an EPUB file, and then use SIGIL to edit the epub until it is as close to what you want as you can get it, then use CALIBRE to convert the epub into an Mobi/Azw file.

One other thing. In your word doc, never EVER format a word or paragraph by just choosing the formatting. Every format change should be done by picking a STYLE from the stylesheet. This will go a long ways towards making your conversion go more smoothly.

It's still going to suck and take a long time. That's why there are commercial services to help with this stuff.
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Old 10-21-2011, 01:09 AM   #8
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Oh, and Peter, it's rboatright, there's no "w." I had illiterate ancestors.
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Old 10-21-2011, 02:06 AM   #9
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I do note that if you include a custom dictionary, you can get popup definitions in your book, which I think is going to be similar to what you want, but it's non-trivial to create, and I don't know of a wysiwyg editor which creates them...

see http://www.mobipocket.com/dev/articl...e=indexing.htm

and here: http://www.mobipocket.com/dev/articl...eFolder=prcgen
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