Author Topic: big problem in look inside  (Read 1371 times)  

Online Herefortheride

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big problem in look inside
« on: February 08, 2018, 10:30:21 PM »
Hey guys, I have a big problem.

I just formatted my first book and I viewed the whole file through my kindle to fix any strange viewing problems with text, formatting, etc. Then I uploaded to Amazon and reviewed each page of the previewer to ensure it looked right.

Everything was fine.

Now it's live and the look inside has all kinds of errors. For example the text is all center justified in the live version but was not in the preview. The first paragraph in each chapter is showing up in a different font and larger  text size than the rest of the paragraph.

Help!

Why is this happening?

Book is called Blood Cauldron
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Online Herefortheride

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2018, 10:36:50 PM »
I have the same file loaded onto my kindle app and it has neither of these formatting problems. Why is the look inside giving me such trouble?  :'( :'(
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Online Rinelle Grey

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2018, 10:48:16 PM »
Ouch. There must be some rogue coding that Kindle is ignoring, but the look inside is picking up on.

What did you use to format it? Im going to guess word (or another word processor)?

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2018, 10:54:01 PM »
Ouch. There must be some rogue coding that Kindle is ignoring, but the look inside is picking up on.

What did you use to format it? Im going to guess word (or another word processor)?

I used scrivener (with kindlegen).

It looks fine in scrivener and on my kindle, AND the amazon previewer during upload process.

What can I do?
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Offline Patty Jansen

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2018, 11:06:09 PM »
I used scrivener (with kindlegen).

It looks fine in scrivener and on my kindle, AND the amazon previewer during upload process.

What can I do?

Ditch the file and use the free formatting tool by D2D.

Offline AaronShep

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2018, 11:55:54 PM »
I believe Look Inside still uses a rendering in KF8, instead of the current KFX. That means that coding that works on current Kindles may not work properly in Look Inside. You would need to use coding that works in both. You don't say how you generated your files, but it's apparently creating code that only works well in KFX. To check this, you can test your file in Kindle Previewer 2, instead of the current Previewer 3.

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2018, 11:56:23 PM »
Ditch the file and use the free formatting tool by D2D.

I will try that now. I was following a tutorial from youtube on the formatting and everything worked fine except this look inside. So annoying!
Havenglade Mysteries (Book 1): 75%

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Online Herefortheride

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2018, 12:00:15 AM »
I believe Look Inside still uses a rendering in KF8, instead of the current KFX. That means that coding that works on current Kindles may not work properly in Look Inside. You would need to use coding that works in both. You don't say how you generated your files, but it's apparently creating code that only works well in KFX. To check this, you can test your file in Kindle Previewer 2, instead of the current Previewer 3.

That's good to know. I will try to check with that before reuploading.

The lingering question is, how will I know if someone's device can see this correctly if it shows up well in some places but not others?? :o :o
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Offline Norman Steele Taylor

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2018, 12:01:43 AM »
If reuploading using different settings doesn't work, try getting an experienced Kindle formatter from places like Fiverr to do it for you. Use a top seller or a highly ranked provider.

They would have the experience you need to overcome "Look Inside"-related formatting issues.


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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2018, 12:12:28 AM »
If reuploading using different settings doesn't work, try getting an experienced Kindle formatter from places like Fiverr to do it for you. Use a top seller or a highly ranked provider.

They would have the experience you need to overcome "Look Inside"-related formatting issues.

Thanks for the advice.

The point of me learning to format is to eliminate the outsourcing though. Everyone has been telling me I should learn to do it for myself and I'm determined to do so and will likely be purchasing Vellum when I have the money but for now I need to try to figure it out without paid formatters.
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Offline Patty Jansen

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2018, 12:17:39 AM »
Seriously, use D2D. No fuss, the files are gorgeous, no look inside issues. Not worth losing brain cells over.

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2018, 12:21:38 AM »
Seriously, use D2D. No fuss, the files are gorgeous, no look inside issues. Not worth losing brain cells over.

I'm sure hoping so! ;D

I've paid for formatting with my first two books and wanted to start taking more ownership (gain knowledge) on that aspect of publishing. It's been extremely stressful for me because I am super excited about this book and think it's a really good read and don't want people turned off by my rookie formatting mistakes. :'(
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Offline Patty Jansen

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2018, 12:27:22 AM »
Formatting was the first thing I outsourced. Professional formatting helped me get my first Bookbub. People overlook its importance all the time. If the look inside looks funky, people will not buy, no matter how nice the file they'll get on their device.

Look at how much time and stress you're wasting on it. You can get your book formatted for as little as $60. D2D does it for free. It really is not worth the heartache. Do you give up "ownership" of your book if you outsource cover design? No, certainly?

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2018, 12:39:18 AM »
Formatting was the first thing I outsourced. Professional formatting helped me get my first Bookbub. People overlook its importance all the time. If the look inside looks funky, people will not buy, no matter how nice the file they'll get on their device.

Look at how much time and stress you're wasting on it. You can get your book formatted for as little as $60. D2D does it for free. It really is not worth the heartache. Do you give up "ownership" of your book if you outsource cover design? No, certainly?

By take ownership, I mean learn to do something for myself.It appears the current problem is with Amazon using older software for their look inside than they use for the kindle. I think I can learn this. If not, I'll go back to paying others to do it for me.

I just see so many successful authors on Kboards doing formatting themselves I'd like to see if I can. And it seems I can, I just need to get the look inside to cooperate.
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Offline AaronShep

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2018, 01:12:35 AM »
If you're determined to take ownership of it, you might look at my series on Kindle formatting, starting with "From Word to Kindle." The basic suggestions work for all Kindles, based on extensive testing at the time of writing, when there was more variety than now.

Aaron

Offline Rica G

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2018, 01:17:05 AM »
This happened to me a while ago too when I tried to do formatting in Scrivener. It was all screwed up and I ended up  buying Vellum for the single book instead. I wish I knew about D2D formatting back then.

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2018, 01:21:02 AM »
This happened to me a while ago too when I tried to do formatting in Scrivener. It was all screwed up and I ended up  buying Vellum for the single book instead. I wish I knew about D2D formatting back then.

Good to know, Rica.

I'm interested in vellum, too. But I broke the bank a bit on cover, editing, etc. recently and will have to wait on it. As soon as KDP allows me to submit the D2D file we will see if this fixes things.
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Offline Patty Jansen

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2018, 01:25:31 AM »
Beware that it can take forever for the look inside to update.

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2018, 01:29:38 AM »
Beware that it can take forever for the look inside to update.

Thanks, Patty!

I'm learning a lot from this. Luckily, I have zero visibility so it's not as bad as someone who had lots of promos lined up lol.  ::)

I'll wait till I have all vendors versions looking clean before sending to my newsletter or dreaming of (finally) starting book promotions.

I do think Amazon's previewer should "match" with their look inside. There is no point of the viewer showing a clean preview only to find the look inside is all screwy.

Havenglade Mysteries (Book 1): 75%

Daughter of Dragons(DoH book4) prologue and character arcs: 5%

world-building and conlang for new series: 1%
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2018, 01:55:12 AM »
Wow, someone bought one of each of my three books just now (or a couple of hours ago).

I haven't shared that this book was live yet so that's kind of interesting.

I hope they like them :D
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Online Rinelle Grey

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2018, 01:58:37 AM »
Put something in the beginning, like a date or version number so that you can see if its been updated if the formatting doesnt change. :)

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Offline Norman Steele Taylor

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2018, 02:06:53 AM »
Wow, someone bought one of each of my three books just now (or a couple of hours ago).

I haven't shared that this book was live yet so that's kind of interesting.

I hope they like them :D

Lots of authors are also avid readers :) 


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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2018, 03:29:46 AM »
So I saw this and went to the amazon page where it is. I sent myself a free sample (to my iphone kindle app) and it looks mostly ok. The chapter headings butt right up against the beginning paragraph. But everything else is more or less ok.

Later in the game you should definitely check out Vellum. I use it myself and have no regrets. But if people here are saying D2D (I've used them in the past before they even offered extensive formatting) then go with that.

I keep thinking that the ebook formatting (and, for that matter, createspace formatting) issues are soon to be 'a thing of the past'.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #23 on: February 09, 2018, 03:34:30 AM »
So I saw this and went to the amazon page where it is. I sent myself a free sample (to my iphone kindle app) and it looks mostly ok. The chapter headings butt right up against the beginning paragraph. But everything else is more or less ok.

Later in the game you should definitely check out Vellum. I use it myself and have no regrets. But if people here are saying D2D (I've used them in the past before they even offered extensive formatting) then go with that.

I keep thinking that the ebook formatting (and, for that matter, createspace formatting) issues are soon to be 'a thing of the past'.

Hey Scott,

I've heard so many great things about Vellum and I'm very interested. I'll budget it in as soon as I can =  )
My first foray into formatting haha

There are so many steps to self-publishing and I want to get each one right.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #24 on: February 09, 2018, 03:55:10 AM »
I understand where you're coming from. I like to do it myself too. I uploaded some pretty messed up files along the way. I started out uploading Word docs. Then I converted Word to ePub with free online converters. (Don't do that. The files suck.) I also tried Calibre and Sigil but that just confused me. I eventually started using Jutoh and loved it. I'm a Vellium user now.

D2D probably is the easiest way to fix the problem right away. But if you want to do it on your own, you may consider Jutoh as a lower cost option.
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Offline Linn

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #25 on: February 09, 2018, 05:45:13 AM »
I used scrivener (with kindlegen).

It looks fine in scrivener and on my kindle, AND the amazon previewer during upload process.

What can I do?

There is some discussion about problems with Scrivener and a possible solution in this thread: https://kdp.amazon.com/community/thread.jspa?threadID=310235&start=30&tstart=0

HTH


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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #26 on: February 09, 2018, 07:01:07 AM »
I uploaded new files for the first two books on 21.12.07 and both are good on 'Look inside'. The two new books uploaded a week or so later are the same, good to go on 'Look'. I use what is probably the only legal copy of Windows 7 in Russia for all my writing and editing and I've never had a problem. I will say that everything on the 'publish' file is symmetrical, either centered or justified and I use narrow margins top, bottom and sides. If I ever get anything printed I'll have the printer to whatever manuscript changes are needed.

I did notice on the Blue Cloud upload that one word needed changing in the preface. I edited the word and uploaded the file again. Everything went well but that one word was not changed, from 'before' to 'after' in the text. I double checked the edit, all was good so I uploaded again. No dice, still 'before', not 'after'. Got busy for a couple days and did not check the little tome and went back after that time and, without me doing anything, the correct word was there. Perhaps Kindle is not as quick an upload as one would think even when the email arrives that the book is 'live'?
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2018, 07:15:28 AM »
I uploaded new files for the first two books on 21.12.07 and both are good on 'Look inside'. The two new books uploaded a week or so later are the same, good to go on 'Look'. I use what is probably the only legal copy of Windows 7 in Russia for all my writing and editing and I've never had a problem. I will say that everything on the 'publish' file is symmetrical, either centered or justified and I use narrow margins top, bottom and sides. If I ever get anything printed I'll have the printer to whatever manuscript changes are needed.

I did notice on the Blue Cloud upload that one word needed changing in the preface. I edited the word and uploaded the file again. Everything went well but that one word was not changed, from 'before' to 'after' in the text. I double checked the edit, all was good so I uploaded again. No dice, still 'before', not 'after'. Got busy for a couple days and did not check the little tome and went back after that time and, without me doing anything, the correct word was there. Perhaps Kindle is not as quick an upload as one would think even when the email arrives that the book is 'live'?

Yeah, I may have to wait a couple of days to see if the changes went through correctly. But it's so weird. The text looks fine on my kindle and in the KDP previewer and then in look inside the font of the first paragraphs is wrong, there is no page breaks for the map and TOC even though that part is absolutely correct in my source document. The paragraphs are center justified too, which is just bizarre.   :o
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Offline R H Auslander

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2018, 07:34:06 AM »
Not being terribly computer literate or for that matter formating literate, I have no idea why you would have problems and I don't. I don't have a kindle or any 'modern' communication device beyond my rather good and locally built computer and a cell phone that has 'Property of Noah' stenciled on it.
I'm sure others here will find a way to help you and I wish I could, but I simply stated what I do and when I find something that works, I tend to stick to it. I'm also a firm believer in the KISS principle.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #29 on: February 09, 2018, 09:05:26 AM »
Put something in the beginning, like a date or version number so that you can see if its been updated if the formatting doesnt change. :)

Yup, yup, yup! I always put the date I upload a new version at the very end of the front-matter copyright info, so I can always tell which version of my book is live and that the Look Inside feature has been updated.

Also, after recently running into a formatting issue such as the OP has encountered (affecting the Look Inside only), I spent the next two days making Sigil my very bestest friend.
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Offline SueSeabury

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #30 on: February 09, 2018, 09:15:38 AM »
Is there a reason you don't use Word for your file when you upload to kdp? I've never had a problem when I use it.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #31 on: February 09, 2018, 09:30:22 AM »
Is there a reason you don't use Word for your file when you upload to kdp? I've never had a problem when I use it.

I don't own windows. I also have heard people have trouble with word as well when formatting files. Hopefully, I can get this figured out.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #32 on: February 09, 2018, 09:33:23 AM »
No time to read the replies, but the exact same thing (same formatting errors) happened to my latest release. I emailed KDP support and they fixed it within the hour. The book itself was fine when purchased but the look inside was horrific.
  

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2018, 09:46:11 AM »
No time to read the replies, but the exact same thing (same formatting errors) happened to my latest release. I emailed KDP support and they fixed it within the hour. The book itself was fine when purchased but the look inside was horrific.

Good to hear it wasn't only me and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel!

I've emailed them. Let's see what happens.  :)
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Offline Ryan W. Mueller

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2018, 10:31:23 AM »
Is there a reason you don't use Word for your file when you upload to kdp? I've never had a problem when I use it.

Same here. It works well as long as you understand how to format a document correctly in Word.

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Offline SueSeabury

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2018, 11:30:04 AM »
I would also recommend Mark Corker's style guide to learn about formatting. It's free on smashwords.
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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2018, 11:44:38 AM »
There have been threads both here and on the Literature & Latte forums about how formatting with Scrivener can give you a messed up Look Inside even though the ebook itself is fine. It's the reason when I knew I had to give up my long-time method of creating ebooks with Mobi Creator because it was dated, I didn't go with Scrivener and did go with Vellum.

L&L says the new Scrivener 3 takes care of the problem, which evidently has to do with the way the older versions of Scrivener did CSS. Of course Scriv 3 is only available for the Mac right now. The Windows version won't be out until later this year. I have seen others post that they contacted Amazon over the messed up Look Inside for a perfectly good Scrivener-produced ebook and Amazon fixed it.

Offline notjohn

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #37 on: February 09, 2018, 01:41:27 PM »
Look Inside is much improved over what it was when introduced in 2010 (as I recall). A lot of us had to go back and format books that we had upload in Word. The problem then, and I suspect the problem the OP is having now, is that while KDP software will always gently close an html tag like <center>, Look Inside follows stricter html rules. If you don't close such a tag (and the same is true with boldface, italic, and whatnot), then the style is followed until and unless a closing tag is met with. Word is especially prone to this; I'm sorry to hear that it can arise in Scrivener too.

My solution was to ditch Word, or rather to clean it up and make an epub out of it. A validated epub will always convert just find on the KDP, with never a Look Inside issue. (Well, that's not entirely true. If you float text around a left-aligned image, Look Inside will do as the old KF7 devices did, and start the text at the very bottom of the image, so that most of the paragraph comes below it. Nothing you can do about that except avoid such formatting in the first ten percent of the book.)

It should be some comfort to the OP that the purchased or borrowed book will look just fine in a Kindle device or app.
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Offline ibizwiz

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #38 on: February 10, 2018, 04:09:54 AM »
I've learned five main lessons in three years of my residency in Kindleopia:

1  Release in series
2  Have a plan
3  Build up an adequate fund for the launch - including formatting tools or services
4  Have more $$ to grow the launch reader base over three years
5  Listen to Patty Jansen

Online Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #39 on: February 10, 2018, 04:26:13 AM »
Same here. It works well as long as you understand how to format a document correctly in Word.

Same here. Word is used so often that KDP must know their way around any possible problems. But Word doesn't seem to be available to the OP.

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Online Herefortheride

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #40 on: February 10, 2018, 04:36:03 AM »
Seems like they've fixed it.
Havenglade Mysteries (Book 1): 75%

Daughter of Dragons(DoH book4) prologue and character arcs: 5%

world-building and conlang for new series: 1%
H.C. Harrington

Online Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #41 on: February 10, 2018, 05:20:27 AM »
Seems like they've fixed it.

That's good. Are you jumping for joy?  :D

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Offline kw3000

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #42 on: February 10, 2018, 09:57:28 AM »

5  Listen to Patty Jansen

I just skip all the steps and do this.  8)

Ken Ward

Offline Norman Steele Taylor

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #43 on: February 11, 2018, 04:41:19 PM »
Seems like they've fixed it.

Did they indicate if it is a system-wide thing or something particular to your situation?


Offline Avis Black

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Re: big problem in look inside
« Reply #44 on: February 11, 2018, 04:51:15 PM »
I use Scrivener to create an epub, then use the stand-alone Kindlegen program-NOT the one you hook up to inside Scrivener--to create the mobi file for Amazon.  This seems to avoid the Scrivener problems.  Once you've made the epub in Scrivener, save it, then open the separate Kindlegen program and browse for your epub, and convert it to mobi that way.  This only takes about 60 extra seconds of work.