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Old 10-03-2021, 03:02 PM   #1
RBossler
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Formatting Issues with ebook on KDP

Hi,

I just published my first children's book on KDP and I'm having 2 major issues.
I uploaded a fixed-format epub (written in Sigil) to KDP.

1. The pages advance in the wrong direction: swipe left-to-right/tap left instead of the standard swipe right-to-left/tap right.
I thought the issue might be the primary-writing-mode meta tag, which I originally set to horizontal-rl (as per Amazon Kindle Publishing Guidelines). I've since changed that tag to horizontal-lr and have the same issue.

2. My Regional Magnification is wonky. For example, on one page I have text taking up 1/4 of a page vertically, and the rest of the page is illustration. So I split the text into two sections to magnify separately. When I magnify the top half the text from the bottom section shows through the background of the magnification text block. However, when I magnify the bottom section, the text from the top does not show through.
Both sections are using the same div.target-mag element to define the magnification text block. And the code is the same format for the app-amzn-magnify.
This problem occurs on all pages that have this format.

Any thoughts on what I might be doing wrong?
I can provide more details/examples of the code if that would help.

Thank you.
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Old 10-03-2021, 06:01 PM   #2
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Possibly Fixed

So, I have figured out what was going on, and my have a fix.

1. This is fixed. Setting it to horizontal-lr was the fix. I was still looking at the old file when I thought this wasn't working.

2. I understand now that the text wasn't "showing through" but was actually being written after the magnification text block.
As a fix, I'm placing the entire text in one div container. Then placing the two separate text files in div containers with display:none. I'll call those containers with the magnification app, and hopefully that will do it. Uploading the test now.
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Old 10-04-2021, 07:49 AM   #3
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It won't work well on Kindle eink readers. Or not at all. Fixed layout is for apps on tablets.
My grandchildren read ebooks on dedicated ereaders.
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Old 10-04-2021, 11:30 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RBossler View Post
Hi,

I just published my first children's book on KDP and I'm having 2 major issues.
I uploaded a fixed-format epub (written in Sigil) to KDP.

1. The pages advance in the wrong direction: swipe left-to-right/tap left instead of the standard swipe right-to-left/tap right.
I thought the issue might be the primary-writing-mode meta tag, which I originally set to horizontal-rl (as per Amazon Kindle Publishing Guidelines). I've since changed that tag to horizontal-lr and have the same issue.

2. My Regional Magnification is wonky. For example, on one page I have text taking up 1/4 of a page vertically, and the rest of the page is illustration. So I split the text into two sections to magnify separately. When I magnify the top half the text from the bottom section shows through the background of the magnification text block. However, when I magnify the bottom section, the text from the top does not show through.
Both sections are using the same div.target-mag element to define the magnification text block. And the code is the same format for the app-amzn-magnify.
This problem occurs on all pages that have this format.

Any thoughts on what I might be doing wrong?
I can provide more details/examples of the code if that would help.

Thank you.
I do feel compelled to note that Amazon's basically abandoned their own FXL coded-eBooks and have released Kindle Create, meant to create FXL/Print Replica eBooks in a proprietary way (that displays zero code).

You might find it's far, far less brain-damaging to try that.

Amazon has also made a choice not to allow ANY FXL/Print Replica eBooks on eInks, only Fires, and desktop/other software (browser-based, in other words) readers.

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Old 10-04-2021, 01:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hitch View Post
I do feel compelled to note that Amazon's basically abandoned their own FXL coded-eBooks and have released Kindle Create, meant to create FXL/Print Replica eBooks in a proprietary way (that displays zero code).

You might find it's far, far less brain-damaging to try that.

Amazon has also made a choice not to allow ANY FXL/Print Replica eBooks on eInks, only Fires, and desktop/other software (browser-based, in other words) readers.

Hitch
Thank you for the response.

I'm running everything on a Chromebook (ChromeOS and Linux) so I couldn't find a way to run Kindle Create.

I'm actually still in the midst of reworking the code with my "fix" above. I'm hopeful it will work (it makes sense to me), but I'm relatively new at coding and I don't know exactly how the amzn-app-magnify code works. Do you have much experience with FXL on KDP? Any thoughts on coding this to work?
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Old 10-04-2021, 02:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RBossler View Post
Thank you for the response.

I'm running everything on a Chromebook (ChromeOS and Linux) so I couldn't find a way to run Kindle Create.

I'm actually still in the midst of reworking the code with my "fix" above. I'm hopeful it will work (it makes sense to me), but I'm relatively new at coding and I don't know exactly how the amzn-app-magnify code works. Do you have much experience with FXL on KDP? Any thoughts on coding this to work?
Yes, we've done a bunch. I wouldn't say a thousand, (ha!), but hundreds of fxl, over the last 12 years, yes.

Well, Region Magnification ("RM") zooms text, by and large. I don't mean to argue with you, really, but you're hampering your ebook, because to use RM, you create an eBook wherein the pages cannot zoom. This standard, using FXL with not-zoomable pages, and RM is...gosh, 7-8 years old and hasn't been updated, really, in all that time? And more importantly, is more or less abandoned?

Have you tried to see if Kindle Kids' Book Creator will run on your Chromebook? I ask because KKBC does exactly what you're trying to do. I do not pretend to remember what that does and doesn't run on, but if you can get it working, use it. You're manually doing a lot of extra work, otherwise.

The problem with FXL on Kindles, whether you hand-code them or not, is that no two Kindles are the same. They're not. You have at least 5x different Fires, with different screen resolutions, and dimensions; you have an endless list of variables, on the desktop readers--Kindle for PC, Kindle for Mac, for Chromebook, for Win8, for this tablet, for that tablet, for iPhones, for iOS, for...I mean...it's bloody endless.

If you use the method you're using now, you present the reader with fait-accompli and here's the thing--no way to size the background of the eBook to suit themselves. They can't zoom the pages larger or smaller. All they can do is tap-zoom the text, up to 200-250%, if it works. They don't have virtual panels, like comic books. (n.b.: you use magnify in both, kids' books and comics, but you have to declare the meta for a comic, to get the panel view to work. And then you can't make the text zoom in addition to the panel.

It's one trick and one trick only. Increased RM for text, or a pop-up panel and that's all she wrote.

So...RM works for text, only. It doesn't really magnify the backgrounds. You create your text by re-entering it (at least, we do) in the RM coding.

I assume, since you're familiar with magnify, etc. that you got all this from the 2019 Publisher's Guidelines, right? 2019.2, which I believe was the last new release? (You should be able to tell how old those coding instructions are, by the devices that they talk about in the Kids' book sections, by the way and the pixel resolutions.)

I doubt that helps. Do you have a friend or a library with a PC? It's one thing for my guys to make hand-coded FXL; it's another thing altogether for a newbie to try it.

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