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Old 06-08-2012, 04:01 PM   #1
Steven Lake
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At my wits end - Smashwords Autovetter Errors (HELP!)

I've been working at this for a while and I'm totally stumped how to fix this. I've got a short booklet that I'm trying to post on Smashwords, but for the life of me I can't figure out why it's generating the following error:

"Paragraph separation error, mixing first line indent with paragraph return on blank line"

The file is up on Smashwords here if someone wants to look at it: https://www.smashwords.com/books/ori...commission.doc

I don't know if this is being caused by the fact that I have bullets in the document (someone else was recently complaining about bullets not working if I remember right) or if it's something else. But if someone can figure out why this is not vetting, it'd be a great help. Thanks.
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Old 06-08-2012, 06:09 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Steven Lake View Post
I've been working at this for a while and I'm totally stumped how to fix this. I've got a short booklet that I'm trying to post on Smashwords, but for the life of me I can't figure out why it's generating the following error:

"Paragraph separation error, mixing first line indent with paragraph return on blank line"

The file is up on Smashwords here if someone wants to look at it: https://www.smashwords.com/books/ori...commission.doc

I don't know if this is being caused by the fact that I have bullets in the document (someone else was recently complaining about bullets not working if I remember right) or if it's something else. But if someone can figure out why this is not vetting, it'd be a great help. Thanks.
URL is forbidden since I am not the author, so can not look at it. That error is usually caused by blank space placed by a word style between paragraphs.
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Old 06-08-2012, 07:09 PM   #3
Steven Lake
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A blank space placed by a word style between paragraphs!? o_0 How in the blazes so I find something like that? I'm confused. What am I looking for? Could this error also potentially be caused by trailing spaces? Also, since the other file is inaccessible, I uploaded the raw doc on my website. Link is below.

http://www.realmsofimagination.net/f...Smashwords.doc
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Old 06-08-2012, 08:30 PM   #4
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Nevermind. I finally figured it out. It apparently didn't like the way I was doing a couple of the paragraphs and threw a fit about it. Everything's up and running now.
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Old 06-08-2012, 11:35 PM   #5
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Nevermind. I finally figured it out. It apparently didn't like the way I was doing a couple of the paragraphs and threw a fit about it. Everything's up and running now.
Great! Glad you got it sorted.
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Old 06-09-2012, 05:15 PM   #6
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Yup, so am I. That was getting to be frustrating beyond words. I only figured it out after I went back through the style guide again. Apparently some readers have issue with mixing styles of paragraphs, even though doing that is completely allowable and normal in regular print publishing. Ugh.
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Old 06-09-2012, 11:47 PM   #7
Edward M. Grant
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If you think Smashwords is frustrating, try Createspace .

Personally I now always copy and paste the book text into a fresh document that's pre-formatted for Smashwords. But the first time I uploaded did take a day or two to get right (in part because the Meatgrinder used to take an hour or two each time).
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Old 06-10-2012, 07:02 AM   #8
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If you think Smashwords is frustrating, try Createspace .
I find that my Smashwords ready doc works well at Createspace. I have all my styles/etc in MS Word setup to follow what I know works at Smashwords and have very little problem using that doc anywhere that I need to submit a doc to.
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:54 AM   #9
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It's nonsense like this is why Smashwords needs direct ePub uploading. The meatgrinder is a pain in a a$$.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:14 PM   #10
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It's nonsense like this is why Smashwords needs direct ePub uploading. The meatgrinder is a pain in a a$$.
We've already had this discussion. I may not be a moderator, but I would appreciate it if you wouldn't keep bringing it up every time someone has even a little issue with the thing.
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Old 06-10-2012, 10:10 PM   #11
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I don't know. Direct Epub upload would be nice, but again you run into the same consistency issues with that as you would with the current system. What I think is needed is a program similar to Sigil that allows you to import a variety of formats, including epubs, then highlight any incompatibilities, and suggest ways to fix them. Once everything is done, it then spits out a compatible, properly formatted file that you would upload, and meatgrinder would do the rest.

If a full blow program is too much work, then how about something simpler, like an MS Office or Open/Libre Office Plugin that does the same thing? In fact, it probably wouldn't hurt for the programmers who lurk here to step in and help out in that regard. I'd help myself, but OO and MSOffice plugins are done in C/C++ and I'm a PHP guy. I used to do C/C++, but that was ages ago. Even so, something like that would go a LONG ways towards solving these kind of issues.

The only question now is, will someone actually do something about it, or will the perpetual whining continue? Just sayin'.
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:35 PM   #12
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The way I look at is that once you learn to deal with the meatgrinder, you still don't know how to make an eBook. Once you learn to make an ePub eBook, you know a lot more useful skill.
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Old 06-11-2012, 12:54 AM   #13
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I actually think it's great that Smashwords used a format like Word for upload as an attempt to bridge the gap for authors. However, I do also agree with JSWolf - that they should accommodate those who have gone into the realms of direct ebook authoring with formats like epub and mobi.

Steven - you wouldn't need any C/C++ really, a macro in either should be able to assist and in either OO or Word, these are just variations of basic. However, you'd need to understand the style guide very well I imagine both for the verification.

I'm assuming you want to copy n paste text from Sigil or from a browser, or from OO or wherever into Word and then run something that helps you format it as per Smashwords style guide - is that correct?
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Old 06-11-2012, 01:34 AM   #14
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Well, I'm basically after some kind of plugin (or program) that takes my existing manuscript (either read directly from the file, or copy/pasted in is fine), and sees if it'll pass muster in the meatgrinder. If not, then have it flag all the problems in the document so I can fix them. It'd be something similar in nature to how spellcheck or grammar check works, only a bit more detailed.
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Old 06-12-2012, 12:28 AM   #15
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You are supposed to use either an indent set in paragraph styles or a space between paragraphs. You can't use both. Glad you worked it out.
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