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Thread: What went wrong when I published my novel on the Kindle

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  1. #1
    figuring it all out
    Join Date
    Nov 2010

    What went wrong when I published my novel on the Kindle

    Last weekend I published my book as a kindle ebook on It looks beautiful, but the experience was full of pitfalls. Maybe it’s just scarier to publish in the same month as Halloween. I really did naively think that I would just be able to upload my files and it would appear on Amazon. Why not? I’ve been writing the book for years and it looks perfect as a Word document. But there were things I was seriously unaware of.

    The first thing wrong: For the last 12 years I used the space button to indent every first sentence of every paragraph. It looked great, until I uploaded my files and previewed my book for the kindle. Every first sentence, in every paragraph of my 283 page novel, was not indented! I’ll be honest, I considered publishing it like that, but after not finding ONE book whose paragraphs were not indented, I had to find a cure.

    I tried to use the “indent” button on Word to move the first sentence of each paragraph. I was ready to indent each and every one, but it moved the entire paragraph not just the first sentence. Thank God I have Microsoft Publisher; it allowed me to indent the first line without affecting the whole paragraph. I did not have to spend weeks changing, and probably screwing up, every paragraph in my book. The “select all” button allowed me to change every paragraph with one press of a button. Publisher saved the day!
    The second thing that went wrong: When I created my pages I used the “Enter” button to end my chapters and continued writing on the next page. Apparently I've spent years writting in a fool’s paradise.

    In order for your pages to look right on the kindle, you must use page breaks after the title page, copyright page, dedication page, chapter page (if any), and after the end of every chapter.
    The third thing that went wrong: Spelling errors! After editing the book 22 times I still found spelling errors. I was editing up to the last minute. My wife’s read it 4 times, and she missed stuff too. I can only hope it’s perfect.

    I'm convinced that the only thing you can do with this is to keep re-editing and give it to a trusted friend to read. Someone else MUST read it. There is always someone. limited.
    Last but not least: When you “look inside this book” on Amazon, the text of my book is green! I called Amazon’s tech support to learn how to change it to black. The support rep told me that I used color text and I must change my text to black. Yes, I did use some red text, but I changed it all to black BEFORE I published it on Amazon.

    I'm still trying to correct this so if anyone has any ideas I'd appreciate the help. The rep said she has never seen anyone’s text come out green before. I looks weird but kind of cool at the same time. My wife keeps reminding me it’s good luck because it is the color of money.

    These are all the things that went wrong when I published my book on the kindle. I wanted to share my mistakes with you in the hopes you’ll be better prepared than I was. But don’t worry Amazon’s instructions are great and easy to follow. I just wanted to give some of you advanced warning, hope it helps.

    Wish me luck, I am about to publish my book in paperback!

    my blog:
    my website:
    Last edited by Luis; 10-25-2011 at 03:29 AM. Reason: To make this legible

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