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Old 08-21-2013, 03:03 PM   #1
Le_Sparte
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TOC in Kindle UI, not in plain page

Hi guys,

I'm not sure I'm at the right place to ask that. If I don't, feel free to drive me elsewhere.

I'm trying to create my first Kindle ebook. In every single tutorial I read, people recommend to create a TOC. I can see how useful it is, but I've seen a lot of ebooks beginning with (a lot of) pages of TOC.

Is there an easy way to create a TOC which shows only using the Kindle UI? I'm not afraid about HTML & CSS, but if there's to create it from Apple Pages without pasting every single chapter to Sigil... Well, you'll save my day.

Best regards!
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Old 08-21-2013, 03:14 PM   #2
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TOC

If you can load your book tp Sigil, a TOC.ncx can be created based on the headers in the book.

If you then save the sigil book as an epub, and send this ePub to KindlePreviewer, the toc will display on the kindle.

An in-line TOC requires a bit more effort.
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Old 08-21-2013, 05:33 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le_Sparte View Post
I'm trying to create my first Kindle ebook. In every single tutorial I read, people recommend to create a TOC. I can see how useful it is, but I've seen a lot of ebooks beginning with (a lot of) pages of TOC.
It's actually quite easy to create an inline HTML TOC for Kindle books with Sigil assuming that you used heading styles in Word/LibreOffice to mark chapter headings before you saved the Word .doc file as an .html file.

Simply press CTRL+T in Sigil, select the headings that you want to include in the TOC and press OK. Then select Tools > Table of Contents > Create HTML Table Of Contents and you're done.

It no headings are shown in the TOC editor, you'll have to highlight each chapter heading and click h3 (or another heading size) on the toolbar to mark it for inclusion in the TOC.
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:01 AM   #4
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Many thanks for your help!
I'm not really fond of an inline Toc honestly.
I've exported my text directly to epub and opened it with Sigil. Let's start with the good news: my toc.ncx is here and it looks complete; the html is quite messy but links in the right panel are active.
Bad news: all my first pages (title, rights, quote) are mixed in my cover.xhtml file.

For sure, I don't want those pages to show in the TOC. But I don't want them to mix together either. How should I solve that issue? Should I create different .xhtml files for title, rights and quotes? In that case, how to extract them from the TOC? Erasing code in the .ncx?

Best regards,
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Old 08-22-2013, 03:32 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le_Sparte View Post
Should I create different .xhtml files for title, rights and quotes?
That's what most book designers do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Le_Sparte View Post
For sure, I don't want those pages to show in the TOC. ... In that case, how to extract them from the TOC? Erasing code in the .ncx?
Simply regenerate the NCX TOC in Sigil after you created separate pages for title, rights and quotes and uncheck all topics that you don't want to include in the TOC editor. This'll automatically update the .ncx.

Of course, you can also manually delete them from the .ncx file.
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le_Sparte View Post
Many thanks for your help!
I'm not really fond of an inline Toc honestly.
I've exported my text directly to epub and opened it with Sigil. Let's start with the good news: my toc.ncx is here and it looks complete; the html is quite messy but links in the right panel are active.
Bad news: all my first pages (title, rights, quote) are mixed in my cover.xhtml file.

For sure, I don't want those pages to show in the TOC. But I don't want them to mix together either. How should I solve that issue? Should I create different .xhtml files for title, rights and quotes? In that case, how to extract them from the TOC? Erasing code in the .ncx?

Best regards,

Hi:

I have several comments replying to things that other folks have said, as well.

Quote:
If you then save the sigil book as an epub, and send this ePub to KindlePreviewer, the toc will display on the kindle.
@Crutledge: No, it won't. The NCX only displays quasi-natively on the K4PC app, and, IIRC, the FireHD; on the K4PC app, it is restricted to a single level; if you have nested levels of TOC, it fails. On all the other millions of Kindles, the ncx will not display.

Quote:
In every single tutorial I read, people recommend to create a TOC.
Forget the tutorials; an inline TOC is actually an Amazon requirement. Moreover, if you upload your book without one, and anyone complains--anyone at all--Amazon will remove the book from sale and require you to "fix" it. I'm not regurgitating urban myth here; we've had to redo 3 books this year in which authors from prior years who'd insisted on "no TOC" had to come back to us when their books were removed from sale. Just so you know.

If you don't want something to show in the NCX, simply remove it. You can uncheck it during the "create toc" process, or you can edit the NCX and remove it manually. Either way is pretty painless.

If you're that opposed to a long TOC, simply make a short one (Title, Start Reading) and hope that it flies. Do not confuse and conflate the NCX, which provides useful information to the reader (% complete, and the like), with the inline TOC, which is useful but not part of the device's own navigation. Also, be advised that Amazon routinely puts the Start Reading Location--no matter WHERE you've coded it to begin--at the first "page" past the TOC.

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Old 08-22-2013, 04:43 AM   #7
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Thank you Doitsu. I know how to generate an appropriate TOC now!

And Hitch, many thanks for all those precisions. I've read on another thread the limitations of the .ncx on the Kindle Family. For sure, I won't kill my book for some cosmetic issues. I'll make my ebook respecting amazon Guidelines. 32 chapters numbered 1-32 will be ugly but, hey, if Daddy said to do so...

I think I'm on for a funny copy & paste session on Sigil. My workflow adds a lot of mess to the code (Apple Pages > Word > KDP). I think I'll win a lot of time time starting over. Should have guessed it, but hope is hard to kill.

Thanks for all!

Best regards,
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Old 08-22-2013, 05:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Le_Sparte View Post
Thank you Doitsu. I know how to generate an appropriate TOC now!

And Hitch, many thanks for all those precisions. I've read on another thread the limitations of the .ncx on the Kindle Family. For sure, I won't kill my book for some cosmetic issues. I'll make my ebook respecting amazon Guidelines. 32 chapters numbered 1-32 will be ugly but, hey, if Daddy said to do so...

I think I'm on for a funny copy & paste session on Sigil. My workflow adds a lot of mess to the code (Apple Pages > Word > KDP). I think I'll win a lot of time time starting over. Should have guessed it, but hope is hard to kill.

Thanks for all!

Best regards,
Pages really is the WORST, but you might consider exporting from Pages to ePUB, and work from there, instead of Pages-->Word-->Sigil-->ePUB. Give it a go, and see if that saves you some time. If you've been scrupulous about using Pages' styles (I forget what Apple calls that now), you can get a remarkably clean ePUB. It might be easier to edit that than to mess around with copy-paste.

And you're welcome. No problem.

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Old 08-22-2013, 07:57 AM   #9
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To be honest, (almost) everything went right with Pages. My doc was easy with styles (one for the chapter, one fort the body). I sent it to my Kindle with Calibre and was really happy with it (Calibre even created a TOC at the end of the book).

But creating an inline TOC is another story. Pages can't create an active unnumbered TOC. Neither does my 2011 Word for Mac. When I tried to create manual links, problems started. Considering other issues, it looked better to change my mind and start from Scratch with Sigil. Easier CSS, easier debugging, right?

I'm done with the importing now (that chapter split button is my new best friend) and have only some little things to fix left, like the backspace at the beginning of a paragraph and the vertical space between them. But I think I'll find quickly a solution playing with Sigil or with the css file.

So thanks everybody!
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Old 08-22-2013, 10:44 AM   #10
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Well, everything went fine. I'm ok with my styling (no vertical-align for my title, but there's no way to do it, right?).

There's a last problem though. I now have a three-pages TOC. I'm fine with it, but if I select the start of the book with the previewer, the second page of my TOC shows up.

Hitch, you're saying there's absolutely no tick to change this?
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Old 08-22-2013, 12:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hitch View Post

@Crutledge: No, it won't. The NCX only displays quasi-natively on the K4PC app, and, IIRC, the FireHD; on the K4PC app, it is restricted to a single level; if you have nested levels of TOC, it fails. On all the other millions of Kindles, the ncx will not display.

Hitch
I am confused, dear lady. When I load to KindlePreviewer some form of toc.ncx shows in all except for the original Kindle. (NOTE: I just rechecked and the ncx does show in the kindle and all levels of the ncx are displayed)

Which brings me to the dumb question of the day. Where is sgc-toc.css located? I have searched the Sigil folder and all of the User folders (Win 7 Pro) and have not located it. I wish to make some additions and making those additions each time Sigil runs is repititous.

Last edited by crutledge; 08-22-2013 at 01:05 PM.
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Old 08-22-2013, 01:19 PM   #12
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Which brings me to the dumb question of the day. Where is sgc-toc.css located?
It's in the Styles folder where it belongs.
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Old 08-22-2013, 01:33 PM   #13
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It's in the Styles folder where it belongs.
I think the question is 'Where is the default Template'

IIRC there was mention that you could have a customized SGC-TOC.CSS
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:01 PM   #14
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I think the question is 'Where is the default Template'

IIRC there was mention that you could have a customized SGC-TOC.CSS
Great!! Where can I find it so I can have a "customized SGC-TOC.CSS?"
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Old 08-22-2013, 02:37 PM   #15
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http://web.sigil.googlecode.com/git/..._contents.html


Quote:
Custom HTML TOC Stylesheet
The generated HTML TOC page uses a separate CSS file (sgc-toc.css) to format the TOC. If the file already exists in your book it will not be overwritten (so you can customise it without losing your changes). But if it does not exist, it will look for sgc-toc.css in your preferences directory and use that as the default file. If there is no file in your preferences directory, then Sigil will create a default stylesheet for the TOC.



http://web.sigil.googlecode.com/git/...eferences.html

Quote:
Open Preferences Location
The Open Preferences Location button on all the Preferences screens can be used to open the directory containing all of your preference files. You can copy the files for backup or for sharing with others.

The preferences location will likely be in the following locations:

Windows:

…\Local Settings\Application Data\sigil-ebook\sigilMAC:

~/Library/Application\ Support/sigil-ebook/sigil/Linux:

$HOME/.local/share/sigil-ebook/sigilAnd the files you are likely to see will include:

•hunspell_dictionaries: Where any standard dictionaries you add are stored.
•sigil_index.ini: Your Index entries.
•sigil_searches.ini: Your Saved Searches.
•sigil_clips.ini: Your saved Clips.
•sigil.ini: General configuration information for Sigil.
•user_dictionaries: Where any personal user dictionaries are stored.

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