Kindle Tips and Tricks

I just uploaded Second Stories to the Kindle. I’d been uploading it all along to my device, as a personal file so that I could use it as an editing tool. I noticed some strange behaviors but didn’t think too much of it. I had saved my Word docx file in Rich Text Format, but noticed that the margins were indented strangely in places. I couldn’t figure that out. When it came time to load it up to the Kindle for sale, I decided I’d better fix it.

I started with my main manuscript file, removed the headings, the dropped caps, and small caps, and saved it to a separate file for the Kindle. I didn’t care much about hyphenated words or paragraph breaks where I didn’t want them because that is irrelevant where the Kindle is concerned. It formats it how it will, and it can change according to the font the reader selects on his own device. But still, when I loaded it, there were the strange areas where the margins weren’t right.

I googled it and discovered that it should be saved in html format, so I saved the Word doc as Web Pages (Filtered). That made a difference, because now I had no more strange margin errors, but other anomalies surfaced. My section breaks, which were the wingding version of the letters “e” and “f” now displayed as just that so now my section breaks were


Ugh. Not what I wanted. I changed that to asterisks. Now, with the dropped caps gone, and the small caps changed to regular, and the section breaks, it should have been perfect.

I paged through and yes, it did look good except one chapter was bolded text. What the…? I checked my Word doc and looked at the unprintable characters, and tweaked this and tried that and nothing worked. It was bolded and I had no clue why. I decided to try to peak at the html itself to see if I could figure anything out. I opened my htm file using the browser and did View Source. I thought it wasn’t going to work because it seemed to freeze there, with a blank screen.

I thought well, after all, it is a complete novel so maybe it will just take awhile. I clicked on Facebook to look around, kill some time while I waited, and after a bit, I got the blinking orange tab notification that my file had loaded. I found the offending chapter and compared it to another chapter that was not bolded. The class was different. The good chapter’s class was MsoNormal and the offending chapter was MsoTitle. I had a clue now, what it was and sure enough, on the Home tab in Word is the Styles tab and my chapter had erroneously been tagged as a header style when it should have been normal.

I have no clue how that happened, and it didn’t make any difference until I converted it to html. After fixing that, the file was perfect.

It takes a few hours for the book to be available on Kindle, and as of this writing it’s not there, but will be shortly. I’ll post it on my Facebook fan page when it’s there. The paperback format takes a bit longer, 5 to 7 days before that’s ready, and I’ll be sure to let everyone know when that’s ready too.

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