How to

Book2Look logo

Where to Use Book2Look Biblet and Add a Preview Book Option

Following a openday at Nielsen BookData where they introduced the Book2Look biblets (http://www.book2look.com) we immediately got some for our books. The Book2Look biblets are ‘the most advanced online marketing tool available for publishers’. We’d seen them before in the Nielsen newsletters but had initially thought the starter package of £150 for 5 was the price each and an annual price, but it wasn’t – it was a one-off price for the starter offer for a total of 5 biblets, once that was resolved we got them immediately and it is nice to be amongst the early adopters of a new tool.
We then had to decide exactly where we were going to use them. They give a book sample, as long a sample as you want, and incorporate links to shopping options, and to reviews. And they come with pre-generated QR codes. As well as giving give feedback options for reviews and comments and allow sharing and embedding options.

Examples of what the biblet looks like and how we’ve used the QR code – both link to here when selected http://book2look.com/book/ZrFHGPVxgR

Book2Look widget image for Inspector Hobbes and the Blood by Wilkie Martin

Book2Look widget image for Inspector Hobbes and the Blood by Wilkie Martin
Click to read an extract

Book2Look look inside Inspector Hobbes and the Blood by Wilkie Martin

Read some of Inspector Hobbes and the Blood by Wilkie Martin now in the Book2Look book preview widget
Scan and open the link to get to the biblet and read an extract

This is a list of where we’ve used them so far:

  1. this website, on the individual books page
  2. this website, on the shop page as it offers other places to buy the book
  3. this website, on the home page with latest information
  4. on authors’ website, on the home page
  5. on authors’ website, on the book pages
  6. on authors’ blog posts
  7. on our twitter feed and author twitter feeds
  8. on authors goodreads profile
  9. in goodreads on book information pages
  10. in goodreads giveaway details
  11. in goodreads ads
  12. on our facebook page
  13. on author facebook pages
  14. in facebook ads
  15. on book pages on iauthor platform
  16. on leaflets as QR code
  17. on bookmarks as QR code
  18. inside print and ebook as link and/or QR code on ads for related books
  19. inside print and ebook as link to current book for sharing and comment options
  20. on netgalley promotion pages
  21. in news releases
  22. in press briefing documents
  23. provided to book bloggers
  24. in email texts
  25. our own blog posts

Example of how we used the QR code in the back pages of the books.

Example of Book2Look QR code and link for ebook

Example of Book2Look QR code and link for ebook

We’ve probably missed some, so we may add to this list when we think of them. The QR codes can be scanned from the QR image when it is displayed on  e-readers or in print (in the book/leaflets etc).

Or here are some other places we’ve thought about but not tried yet:

  1. on t-shirts (promotional materials) as QR code
  2. on business cards as QR code
  3. in brochures as QR codes
  4. on banners, posters and dump-bins as QR codes
  5. on AI information sheets as QR codes
  6. in email signature blocks
  7. shelfari and other book websites
  8. in author profiles on other websites (provided the site doesn’t have its own options for previewing the book)
  9. in ebook metadata

If you have other suggestions for good places to use them then please let us know.

Nielsen are hoping to eventually incorporate them into the data they supply to bookshops so that it gives these shops the preview options.

For more information on Book2Look see the Nielsen website http://www.nielsenbookdata.co.uk/controller.php?page=88


13 November 2014


Definitions

AI – advance information sheet, sent to bookshops

biblet – the Book2Look widget

dump-bin – book/series/publisher specific display stands

metadata –  collection of data that describes a book (author, description, title, genre etc)

QR – quick response code. Scan with camera in mobile and go to direct to the linked website (via QR code reader)

iauthor, shelfari, netgalley – websites

Nielsen – the helpful ISBN  and bookdata people

Distribution Plan for an Independent Publisher for eBooks and POD

Before we started our publishing journey we considered how we expected to print and distribute books. This is the outline plan we put together. It focuses on distributing to Amazon as paperbacks and ebooks, and considers the routes to make books available more widely as paperbacks to online and physical bookshops. It assumes paperbacks are initially printed-on-demand (POD) via both LightningSource and Amazon Createspace (although it isn’t necessary to use both). We’ve not completed all the distribution paths we first thought of (those with dotted links are pending), as, for instance, we’ve not completed any audio books or distributed any short stories yet, partially as audio via Amazon’s ACW wasn’t initially available in the UK (although it is now). Some of the things listed were tried (like Amazon eStore and Amazon Select) and were a mixed success which we may or may now continue with (most likely not continue with).

Outline Production and Print Plan for Small Independent Publisher of ebooks and paperbacks (POD)

Outline Production and Print Plan for Small Independent Publisher of ebooks and paperbacks (POD)


4 November 2014

Generating Book Interior PDF for LightningSource with Adobe Acrobat XI Pro

LightningSource printing can be used for print-on-demand (POD) books, or for small print runs. Their book setup requires the cover and the interior to be loaded separately. The cover has to be built to a specific size and their website has a template generator (https://www1.lightningsource.com/covergenerator.aspx) to produce the right size of cover for the type of book, the number of pages, paper type and book finish. The book interior is however down to you, but must comply with LightningSource’s requirements for a PDF. We’ve uploaded a few interior files now, they have all been accepted on the first upload, and here we share the settings we’ve used.
First thing to note is that we use Adobe Acrobat XI Pro to generate the PDF. There are later versions of Adobe Acrobat available, or it can be run from Adobe’s cloud Software as a Service (SaaS) options, or have a look through eBay for a copy of a suitable version (with a licence key).
Once you have Adobe Acrobat the following may help as this is how we generate our PDFs. This assumes that you have already formatted the document into a mirrored page layout in MS Word with appropriate margins for a book being printed by LightningSource, and that the book is formated into pages, proofread and ready to go.

  1. In MS Word, select Print and then select ‘Adobe PDF’ as the printer.print adobe pdf
  2. Select the button under ‘Adobe PDF’ for ‘Printer Properties’.adobe start menu
  3. Select ‘Adobe PDF Page Size’ and either pick the size you want or select ‘Add’ and create a customized size. We created a customized size. The size for our books is 5.25in x 8 in or 133.35mm x 203.2mm.ls book size
  4. Select ‘Default Settings’ and ‘Edit’ to choose the settings to configure the PDF file. These are the settings we use, first for ‘General’. Here select the ‘Compatibility’ mode and set the default page size.general
  5. then for Imagesimages
  6. for Fonts. Select to embed all fonts.fonts
  7. for Colorcolor
  8. for Advancedadvanced
  9. for Standards. We chose ‘PDF/X-3 (Acrobat 4.0 Compatable)’, although more compatibility options are supported by LightningSource so choose one available at LightningSource.standards
  10. Once you have all the settings you want select ‘Save As’ and give the format a name you can find again later.
  11. With the ‘Adobe Properties’ selected, choose ‘Print’ to create the PDF file.
  12. Once the PDF is created, Adobe Acrobat will open automatically, if not, open the document with Acrobat, and then check that all the fonts being used in the document are the ones you want and that no others have snuck in.  Select File->Properties->Fonts. If any are wrong or not embedded, then go back to the MS Word document and remove or correct them before recreating the PDF again as above.loaded fonts

The PDF file created can also be used at other printers provided they don’t have different print sizes, different margins, or different PDF standards, so, for instance, the file output from these instructions can alternatively be loaded at Amazon’s CreateSpace although the MS Word file margins for CreateSpace can be different.


20 October 2014

 

ePUB logo

ePUB to MOBI in 5 Steps on Windows Platform

Here is a simple method showing how to convert your book from ePUB into a MOBI file for Amazon Kindles. It can use the same steps as for a conversion from MS Word. If you have a lot of photos and pictures, or weird or fixed layouts then this won’t be quite right for you, but if you have a text or fiction book with a few pictures this should be fine.

  1. Download Amazon’s KindleGen program (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765211). Get the latest version. Save it to the same directory/folder as the epub file you  want to migrate.
  2. Create a new text file and call it runkindlegen.bat. Put the following text into it (change the two names “your html file.epub”  and “your book name.mobi”) and save the file.

    @echo off
    “kindlegen.exe” “your html file.epub” -c2 -o “your book name.mobi” -verbose
    pause

  3. To create the .MOBI just double-click on the runkindlegen.bat file you have created. It will open a small black command window and as ‘verbose’ is set it will list any errors, warnings and information messages on the screen.
  4. Go through the messages and look for any that start Wxxx or Exxx. You can ignore the ones that start Ixxxx as these are just for information. If you don’t include a cover file then there will be at least one warning message for the missing cover. For any other messages check to see what the problem is and if you can fix it.
  5. Download and install Amazon’s Kindle Previewer (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765261), and use it to check the .MOBI file loads and reads ok.

The KindleGen program page (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765211) has some help options if you want more control on the formatting.

If the ePUB includes a cover, then if you’re planning on uploading the MOBI file to Amazon then you should remove the cover from the ePUB first otherwise you end up with two covers.

Good luck.


19 October 2014

MS Word to MOBI in 7 Steps on Windows Platform

Here is a simple method showing how to convert your book from MS Word into a MOBI file for Amazon Kindles. If you have a lot of photos and pictures, or weird layouts then this won’t be quite right for you, but if you have a text or fiction book with a few pictures this should be fine.

  1. Make sure your book is nice and tidy in MS Word first. That you have consistent fonts, and not too many of them etc. If you are planning to load the .MOBI to Amazon then you don’t need to have the cover in the file as this is loaded separately and added to the file by Amazon.
  2. Use the ‘save as’ option to save as type ‘Web Page Filtered’.
  3. Download Amazon’s KindleGen program (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765211). Get the latest version. Save it to the same directory/folder as the html file you created in step 2.
  4. Create a new text file and call it runkindlegen.bat. Put the following text into it (change the two names “your html file from step2.htm”  and “your book name.mobi”) and save the file.

    @echo off
    “kindlegen.exe” “your html file from step2.htm” -c2 -o “your book name.mobi” -verbose
    pause

  5. To create the .MOBI just double-click on the runkindlegen.bat file you have created. It will open a small black command window and as ‘verbose’ is set it will list any errors, warnings and information messages on the screen.
  6. Go through the messages and look for any that start Wxxx or Exxx. You can ignore the ones that start Ixxxx as these are just for information. If you don’t include a cover file then there will be at least one warning message for the missing cover. For any other messages check to see what the problem is and if you can fix it.
  7. Download and install Amazon’s Kindle Previewer (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765261), and use it to check the .MOBI file loads and reads ok.

And that’s it. The KindleGen program page (http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html?docId=1000765211) has some help options if you want to control the formatting a bit more.

Good luck.


17 September 2014