Formatting Tips for Kindle Book Success – Article #1 in the 2018 Self-Publishing Services UK Series.
Ready for some formatting tips for Kindle? Then don’t go anywhere because today I want to share a self-publishing services article packed with insider tips to help you get your Kindle book formatting just right. Your published book deserves the best possible chance of success, so bookmark this article when you start or are working on the e-book formatting process using Microsoft Word.
Formatting Tips for Kindle Success – 12 Quick Insider Secrets
Have you ever downloaded a book to your Kindle and been so put off by the formatting that you’ve given up reading? Incorrectly formatted e-books, or those which have been thrown together aren’t likely to appeal to your ideal audience nor do they project professionalism. Being sloppy at the last stretch approach is such a disappointment, too, because there are so many amazing books out there which bear the heart and soul of its writers, but are spoiled because of poor/rushed formatting.
So if you’re determined to be a successful Kindle author (and not a sloppy at the last stretch one), here are 12 Top Tips to ensure your Kindle book formatting is on point.
- New Chapter = New Page – press CTRL+ENTER to insert a page break at the end of your chapters or use Insert and Page Break from the menu bar.
- Use Minimal Fonts – no more than three fonts (otherwise it looks too messy) and choose easy to read fonts such as Arial, Garamond, Times New Roman, Trebuchet or Verdana.
- Headers and Footers – no need to set these up as they aren’t necessary for e-books.
- Manual Numbering Versus Automatic Numbering – sometimes gremlins can interfere with your numbered lists. So to avoid this, try manually inputting your numbers instead of using Microsoft Word’s automatic insertion. This will save you time having to fix misaligned numbered lists.
- Copyright Page – don’t forget to add your copyright page to the front of your book (usually after the cover page). Include the copyright symbol (use the Insert and Symbol options on your menu), your name and the year plus a standard copyright blurb. EG © Michelle Emerson, 2018.
- Create a Clickable Contents Page – after your copyright page and any dedication / acknowledgements page. Instead of adding a page number to your Table of Contents, add a hyperlink. Either use the Reference > Table of Contents > Insert Table of Contents or set up bookmarks and hyperlinks at each new chapter.
- Double-Check ALL your Hyperlinks – as well as checking that the ToC hyperlinks take you to where they’re supposed to in one click, double-check any other hyperlinks in your book – such as links to your website, social media pages, Amazon Author Central page, or further reading.
- Inserting Images – images need to be inserted into your page as jpegs (rather than being cut and pasted in). Check out KDP Amazon’s community network here if you want advice about formatting your images and inserting them correctly into your e-book: https://www.kdpcommunity.com/s/?language=en_US
- Inserting Tables – again, rather than cutting and pasting these from an existing document, use the Insert Table option in Microsoft Word. This should prevent lots of time-consuming fixing at the end of the Kindle formatting process.
- Checking the Final Presentation of Your Kindle Book – once your book has been uploaded to the KDP platform, use the Kindle Previewer option to double-check everything looks good on the page. Keep your Word document open as you preview, and fix any problems that occur as you spot them. That way it saves going the long way round (ie making a list of the errors and then actioning them.)
- Don’t Add Your Cover Image to the Book’s Interior – this will happen automatically when your Kindle book is published.
- Tab Indents or No Indents? – personally I prefer the ‘no indentation’ look when I’m reading books on Kindle or formatting e-books for my author clients. Why? Because some indents are way too big… I’m talking 1cm+ from the left-hand margin and this eats into your line spacing and on a relatively small Kindle screen you feel like you’re constantly clicking to the next page and the next page. Sometimes they’re inconsistent… just one extra tap (by mistake) on your tab button makes the first line of your paragraph jump out of place. And quite frankly, it’s a pain to go through the entire book/manuscript checking for this issue. My advice would be to stick to a left-hand alignment and spacing after the end of each paragraph (anywhere from 6-12).
Having formatted hundreds of book for my author clients over the years, I know the kind of challenges that usually crop up, and thankfully through my experience I’ve learned how to fix them. At times it can be tricky, that’s why I’ve prepared these formatting tips for Kindle book success, so you can spend your self-publishing time more efficiently.
Invest time and effort into formatting your Kindle book (or call in a professional book interior designer – such as me) and your readers will enjoy your book so much more. You’ll be rewarded with regular royalties filtering into your bank account and your readers will be first in the queue for your future books, too.
My Kindle formatting services are just £99 – regardless of word count.
If you’d like to book your manuscript in with me (turnaround is usually 36-48 hours) then feel free to get in touch.
Self-publishing Services for UK Independent Authors