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Old 06-01-2020, 01:41 PM   #1
Firefly25
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Please help KDP site preview vs Kindle Comic Creator differences

Hi, a graphic designer/writer new to ebooks with 5 q's. (Seems a lot more involved from the length of this than it is, expertise please!)

***We’ve produced comics via comic creator by plasq. We then export them as epubs. When we open them in Kindle Comic Creator all is as it should be—none of the following such issues when viewing in KCC (used to make the MOBI files).***

1) When we view our mobi file on the KDP site, we see the cover twice (location 1 and 2).
a. Our mobi file does NOT contain the cover (we upload it as a separate jpg as per the “add content” page).

2) Our first page. page-1, though present in KCC, does not appear when we view the uploaded mobi file on the KDP site previewer. We found 2 ways around this but even with our “corrections” a problem remains with Page-1 because the mobi file (when we look at it in the desktop finder folder it is in), is blank/doesn’t have an image. We’ve “corrected” just the missing Page-1 page by:

a) Going back to Comic Creator, duplicating Page-1, exporting it as an epub and opening it in KCC (where we now see two duplicate Page-1s). We then export it via KCC to get that mobi file and upload that mobi file to the KDP site. Now the KDP-site previewer shows 2 covers and Page 1.
-Though this gets the Page-1 to show (location 3), we are concerned if downloaded people will see duplicate page-1s and the cover is still appearing twice.

b) Going back to Comic Creator by plasq and rather than double page-1, we’ve inserted the cover ahead of page 1 (so the first page of the exported epub is the actual cover). We then open the epub in KCC (all looks just as it had in Comic Creator by plasq) and export it to get that mobi file. When we view the mobi file on the KDP site, we get the same thing as before: 2 covers and Page 1…
-We only tried this AFTER noticing page 1 was missing in the site-previewer, we did not compose most mobi files this way so this can’t be why the cover appears 2x.


3) When we upload our ebooks as MOBI files made by KCC, there is no option to view them in the phone device on the KDP-site launch preview.

**4) Uploading files as EPUBSs allows us to view them in the “phone” device. However, when we upload the epub files (rather than convert to mobi), and preview the book on the KDP site, the images (other than the cover) look too small/have large white borders in all devices BUT the PHONE device. (They still have borders, but the images are fairly centered and look ok.) Again, the epub looks great in our KCC (pictures go to the proper edges, no huge white spaces. etc).

*The page/image dimensions are the same for our epub and mobi files (we used these epubs to make the mobi files (which, on the KDP-site preview don’t have the border issues but lack the phone device).

5) We downloaded Kindle Previewer 3. No matter what, it fails to open our books. We tried opening the books after downloading them from the KDP site and we tried opening the books we uploaded, and though the xcel log says: "book conversion successful," Kindle Previewer 3 fails to open any of our files. We get a yellow exclamation point warning and it fails to open any files.
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Old 06-01-2020, 03:58 PM   #2
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I am not familiar with the software you used to create the source EPUB for your comic. My best guess is that the file it produced for you does not comply in some way with Amazon's proprietary comic format as documented in chapter 12 of the Amazon Kindle Publishing Guidelines.

It is hard to say more without seeing actual files.
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Old 06-01-2020, 05:21 PM   #3
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Since I'm neither familiar with plasq nor with KCC, here are some general remarks:
  • AFAIK, all Kindle content is first processed with KindleGen.
  • KindleGen doesn't not support HTML cover pages. (If an epub contains a cover page without additional text, KindleGen will simply discard the cover page HTML content and use the image as the cover image.)
  • KindleGen will also use an image as the cover image, if the epub contains a cover page meta entry, which typically looks like this in epub2 books:
    Code:
    <meta name="cover" content="cover.jpg" />
  • Since you're also having other conversion problems, you might want to check the epub with EPUBCheck.
.
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Old 06-06-2020, 06:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefly25 View Post
Hi, a graphic designer/writer new to ebooks with 5 q's. (Seems a lot more involved from the length of this than it is, expertise please!)

***We’ve produced comics via comic creator by plasq. We then export them as epubs. When we open them in Kindle Comic Creator all is as it should be—none of the following such issues when viewing in KCC (used to make the MOBI files).***
I don't know this program. What is it and why are you using it? Do you mean that you're using it to make comics for ePUB readers? To be distributed...where? ibooks? Nook? Where?

Do you know if this app exports fixed-layout, or reflowable, ePUBs? Do you have any ability to read the code inside it?

Do you mean Comic LIFE, the comic-drawing app?

Quote:
1) When we view our mobi file on the KDP site, we see the cover twice(location 1 and 2).
Wait. Are you saying that you're putting ePUBs into KCC? You do know that KCC was last updated what, 7 years ago? Have you tried Kindle Create, in panel mode, instead?

You can use ePUBs, and import them into KCC, but they MUST have the supported Comic Book coding and formatting. Do you have any idea if that's the case? have you compared the ePUB's coding against the required and stated coding in the Publisher's Guidelines?


Quote:
a. Our mobi file does NOT contain the cover (we upload it as a separate jpg as per the “add content” page).
Yes, but does your ePUB have the cover file inside it? Even if it's just in the images folder? Do you know?

Quote:
2) Our first page. page-1, though present in KCC, does not appear when we view the uploaded mobi file on the KDP site previewer. We found 2 ways around this but even with our “corrections” a problem remains with Page-1 because the mobi file (when we look at it in the desktop finder folder it is in), is blank/doesn’t have an image. We’ve “corrected” just the missing Page-1 page by:

a) Going back to Comic Creator, duplicating Page-1, exporting it as an epub and opening it in KCC (where we now see two duplicate Page-1s). We then export it via KCC to get that mobi file and upload that mobi file to the KDP site. Now the KDP-site previewer shows 2 covers and Page 1.
-Though this gets the Page-1 to show (location 3), we are concerned if downloaded people will see duplicate page-1s and the cover is still appearing twice.

b) Going back to Comic Creator by plasq and rather than double page-1, we’ve inserted the cover ahead of page 1 (so the first page of the exported epub is the actual cover). We then open the epub in KCC (all looks just as it had in Comic Creator by plasq) and export it to get that mobi file. When we view the mobi file on the KDP site, we get the same thing as before: 2 covers and Page 1…
-We only tried this AFTER noticing page 1 was missing in the site-previewer, we did not compose most mobi files this way so this can’t be why the cover appears 2x.
Back to, do you have any idea what sort of coding is contained inside the ePUB?

Second question, is there some reason you're not simply putting a PDF into the KCC? Or doing that with Kindle Create/panel view, instead? Some reason you're torturing yourself this way?

Quote:
3) When we upload our ebooks as MOBI files made by KCC, there is no option to view them in the phone device on the KDP-site launch preview.
Which tells me that there is something wrong and incompatible with your ePUB.

Quote:
**4) Uploading files as EPUBSs allows us to view them in the “phone” device. However, when we upload the epub files (rather than convert to mobi), and preview the book on the KDP site, the images (other than the cover) look too small/have large white borders in all devices BUT the PHONE device. (They still have borders, but the images are fairly centered and look ok.) Again, the epub looks great in our KCC (pictures go to the proper edges, no huge white spaces. etc).
Because, in the world of Amazon, you cannot, repeat, cannot build a fixed-layout MOBI file (Kindle file) from a fixed-layout ePUB. When you upload your ePUB, it obviously does not have the sort of coding that Amazon is expecting, for a fixed-layout file, so it's "shrinking" the images to fit a reflowable environment.


And no offense, but how the ePUB looks in KDD is kinda moot. A similar thing happens when unwitting new publishers export a fixed-layout ePUB, from inDesign. They put the resulting "perfect" ePUB into Kindle Previewer 3 and they're thrilled. Oh, boy, it looks perfect! They upload it at KDP and in the online previewer, it looks perfect! Hooray...

and then, they download the for-sale ebook and HOLY CARP, it's a disaster. This is because the publishing workflow finally processes the coding for the REAL environment that the book will be in, not the browser-like environment that is KCC, Kindle Create or Kindle previewer 3 and voila, all the kerning and other cruft is showing up as it really looks on a Kindle.

Quote:
*The page/image dimensions are the same for our epub and mobi files (we used these epubs to make the mobi files (which, on the KDP-site preview don’t have the border issues but lack the phone device).
Which are...??? What page dimensions are those, please? No offense, but ePUB readers and Mobi readers aren't the same critters.

Quote:
5) We downloaded Kindle Previewer 3. No matter what, it fails to open our books. We tried opening the books after downloading them from the KDP site and we tried opening the books we uploaded, and though the xcel log says: "book conversion successful," Kindle Previewer 3 fails to open any of our files. We get a yellow exclamation point warning and it fails to open any files.
Which means that your files are corrupted, (by which I mean, incompatible with Kindle/MOBI) one way or the other. lIf KP3 can't open your files, give it up. I mean...don't use those files, under any circumstances. You should be testing your KCC mobi files with KP3 in the first place and if it can't open them, then you have a problem. If KP3 can't open your ePUB files, you have a problem and putting that same ePUB into KCC isn't going to magically fix it.

Honestly, it's hard for me to even guess what's happening here. Most fixed-layout ePUBs are targeted for iBooks or at least, the iPad reading environment, which is completely different than even a Fire Kindle, much less eInks. Without knowing more..we're all just throwing spit at the wall.

Hitch
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