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How To Format Manuscripts for Amazon Kindle

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As publishers and self-publishers rush to make the Kindle e-book transition, they must also face unique formatting problems. In a Tools of Change lecture yesterday, consultant Joshua Tallent from eBook Architects explained simple HTML fixes that publishers and self-publishers can make to become more Kindle compatible.

First, he explained that Microsoft Word adds stray HTML code to any document, and it must be cleaned out before transferring a manuscript to Kindle. Secondly, Kindle code does not offer HTML support for tables, so publishers must reformat charts as images or text. Finally, he recommended that publishers add a Table of Contents to all Kindle books so readers can easily browse the text.

For more detailed instructions, the digital self-publishing company Smashwords released a free style guide that helps self-publishers format for a variety of e-book readers, including Kindle, Epub, and PDF.

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