Author Topic: Draft2Digital Formatting Question: How do you get the TOC to work in PDF form?  (Read 566 times)  

Offline TiffanyTurner

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So, I am finally off and running with the last book in my children's series. I'm publishing with Draft2Digital this time, and working on the formatting. I've got ISBN, everything looking good for the ebook. I can download the sample files for mobi and epub.

But I was hoping to use the PDF for Createspace. I downloaded the PDF, and it has all the great formatting and extra pages that you can add through Draft2Digital, EXCEPT FOR THE TABLE OF CONTENTS. There is no table of contents at all in the PDF version. Just blank pages.

I've done Createspace PDF formatting for some of my other books, but not using Draft2Digitals on-line formatting. I used Createspace templates. (Yes, I hear you groaning, but it was my first time.) So, feeling a bit stuck on how to get the Table of Contents in my new book and keep the wonderful formatting that D2D formatting.

I'm noticing D2D is great for ebook formatting, but not making me happy right now to make a decent PDF for Createspace. Even for the print book edition sample, it was missing too. So, kind of disappointed right now.

Has anyone figured how to work around this or add a TOC?

The Lost Secret of Fairies
The Lost Secret of the Green Man
$0.99-$2.99 on Kindle
New Kindle Release:
The Lost Secret of Dragonfire
$3.99
Children's Adventure/Fantasy series
www.tiffany-turner.com
Blog: http://crystalkeeper.wordpress.com

Offline Speaker-To-Animals

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The first question that comes to mind is whether there's a table of contents in the ebook files. And if so, is there both an HTML and NCX version.

Offline TiffanyTurner

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The first question that comes to mind is whether there's a table of contents in the ebook files. And if so, is there both an HTML and NCX version.
I've opened up an epub edition. How do you tell whether it's HTML or NCX version?
The Lost Secret of Fairies
The Lost Secret of the Green Man
$0.99-$2.99 on Kindle
New Kindle Release:
The Lost Secret of Dragonfire
$3.99
Children's Adventure/Fantasy series
www.tiffany-turner.com
Blog: http://crystalkeeper.wordpress.com

Offline SallyElliot

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Most of us know how to create Word document or convert PDF to document format. D2D takes doc format. Hope it helps unless you are looking for some other specific advice.

Offline Jeff Tanyard

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If you've got an epub, then you can use Calibre to do the rest.  Download the epub from D2D and add it to your Calibre library.  If everything looks right in the epub--and if I'm reading you right, it sounds like it does--then all you have to do is convert to pdf.  Then you can upload that pdf wherever you want.

I just tried this with Hostile Planet as a test, and the ToC and all the D2D links at the back work in the pdf Calibre created.  The graphics look fine, too.  Basically, everything about it looks indistinguishable from the epub.

Hope that helps.  Good luck.  :)
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Offline TiffanyTurner

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If you've got an epub, then you can use Calibre to do the rest.  Download the epub from D2D and add it to your Calibre library.  If everything looks right in the epub--and if I'm reading you right, it sounds like it does--then all you have to do is convert to pdf.  Then you can upload that pdf wherever you want.

I just tried this with Hostile Planet as a test, and the ToC and all the D2D links at the back work in the pdf Calibre created.  The graphics look fine, too.  Basically, everything about it looks indistinguishable from the epub.

Hope that helps.  Good luck.  :)



Thank you so much. This really did help.
I just tried it and got some issues that came up on Createspace. Apparently, I can't run the online viewer, because I have to get an adobe flash player upgrade. Grrrrrr.

I think I'm on the right track though. I did download Vellum to see if I could get a TOC done. Vellum did do all the hassle and figured out the TOC. But to get a PDF for print you have to buy the program for $250.

But if I can update my flashplayer, I can see if the Calibre works or not. I'll have to see. But at least it was progress towards a solution.

Being an author is so much more than writing. You have to coordinate cover designers, artists, freelance editors, and copy editors. It will be worth it once I get this all formatted. To note, I got a quote of $400 to do the formatting on my 130 page children's book and was like, I'd rather just buy Vellum. LOL
The Lost Secret of Fairies
The Lost Secret of the Green Man
$0.99-$2.99 on Kindle
New Kindle Release:
The Lost Secret of Dragonfire
$3.99
Children's Adventure/Fantasy series
www.tiffany-turner.com
Blog: http://crystalkeeper.wordpress.com

Offline Bill Hiatt

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Thank you so much. This really did help.
I just tried it and got some issues that came up on Createspace. Apparently, I can't run the online viewer, because I have to get an adobe flash player upgrade. Grrrrrr.

I think I'm on the right track though. I did download Vellum to see if I could get a TOC done. Vellum did do all the hassle and figured out the TOC. But to get a PDF for print you have to buy the program for $250.

But if I can update my flashplayer, I can see if the Calibre works or not. I'll have to see. But at least it was progress towards a solution.

Being an author is so much more than writing. You have to coordinate cover designers, artists, freelance editors, and copy editors. It will be worth it once I get this all formatted. To note, I got a quote of $400 to do the formatting on my 130 page children's book and was like, I'd rather just buy Vellum. LOL
If your only problem is the TOC, it makes sense to use a free version. However, it's worth noting that Vellum can do a paperback interior PDF in just a couple of minutes with all kinds of adjustments that would take hours to do manually. It does spread-balancing (facing pages match in length, except for last pages in chapters) and has some kind of kerning control that handles justified text better than what Word could do on its own. In other words, the spacing looks more even. You can turn hyphenation on or off, and if it's on, the program uses it only when necessary. (It used to take me the better part of the day to hyphenate a novel manually.) It seems to weigh all kinds of variables in getting even-looking lines without creating other anomalies.

The PDFs I produced on my own were pretty good, though they took a long time. With Vellum, I can get more professional results in a fraction of the time. It doesn't offer all the flexibility you'd get with a professional formatter, but it's much cheaper over time.


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Offline notjohn

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I've done Createspace PDF formatting for some of my other books, but not using Draft2Digitals on-line formatting. I used Createspace templates. (Yes, I hear you groaning, but it was my first time.) So, feeling a bit stuck on how to get the Table of Contents in my new book and keep the wonderful formatting that D2D formatting.

I'm disappointed to hear that D2D omits the TOC! I'd begun to recommend it as a workaround for people who just can't bring themselves to take the plunge.

Word will output a perfectly good PDF, though I find it much easier to do in OpenOffice Writer (probably will switch to LibreOffice for my next book; it gets a lot of praise here and elsewhere) because the menus are more intuitive and there are no dang TABS.

Sure, it's fussy work, but the results justify the effort. To me, Vellum output is awfully bland, and the ebooks at least tend to have useless flourishes of the sort that appeal to people who have never actually worked in publishing. But then I don't believe in any automagical conversions except the several that will clean up Word's awful html (Word2CleanHtml online, Toxaris's plug-ins for Word, and others you can buy or find free online -- I don't know why Amazon can't adapt one of them, but after all these years it hasn't).
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Offline Speaker-To-Animals

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Quote
I've opened up an epub edition. How do you tell whether it's HTML or NCX version?

There are two kinds of tables of contents in an ebook. One, usually referred to as the html toc, is visible on the "page" and if you click on something, it will forward you to that chapter. The second is an invisible file that the reader itself picks up and allows you to move to different chapters via the navigate menu.

I don't know much about D2Ds creation system, I've always uploaded my own epubs to their system. But if it's not creating a TOC in a PDF, I have a suspicion its probably not creating something for the ebook as it would trigger off the same stuff.

Offline Bill Hiatt

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There are two kinds of tables of contents in an ebook. One, usually referred to as the html toc, is visible on the "page" and if you click on something, it will forward you to that chapter. The second is an invisible file that the reader itself picks up and allows you to move to different chapters via the navigate menu.

I don't know much about D2Ds creation system, I've always uploaded my own epubs to their system. But if it's not creating a TOC in a PDF, I have a suspicion its probably not creating something for the ebook as it would trigger off the same stuff.
That could be true, but on the other hand, D2D would have been deluged with problems if it produced ebooks without a TOC. It sounds as if there's some flaw in the routine for PDF creation. Or perhaps their assumption is that a TOC isn't necessary in a print novel. It might be worth contacting them about it if the OP is interested.


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Offline Bill Hiatt

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I'm disappointed to hear that D2D omits the TOC! I'd begun to recommend it as a workaround for people who just can't bring themselves to take the plunge.

Word will output a perfectly good PDF, though I find it much easier to do in OpenOffice Writer (probably will switch to LibreOffice for my next book; it gets a lot of praise here and elsewhere) because the menus are more intuitive and there are no dang TABS.

Sure, it's fussy work, but the results justify the effort. To me, Vellum output is awfully bland, and the ebooks at least tend to have useless flourishes of the sort that appeal to people who have never actually worked in publishing. But then I don't believe in any automagical conversions except the several that will clean up Word's awful html (Word2CleanHtml online, Toxaris's plug-ins for Word, and others you can buy or find free online -- I don't know why Amazon can't adapt one of them, but after all these years it hasn't).
I wasn't aware that you'd ever used Vellum.

I actually can't recall seeing any flourishes I haven't seen in trad-pubbed books, but most of that is controlled by user choices. If you don't want the flourishes, you don't have to have them. As far as blandness is concerned, given the widely differing capabilities of various ereaders and other hardware, I would think the blander the better in some respects.

I probably wouldn't have bothered with Vellum just for ebooks. I was happy with the ones I produced pre-Vellum. The ability to rapidly produce a good print PDF, though, is priceless to me.


Tickling the imagination one book at a time
Bill Hiatt | fiction website | education website | Facebook author page | Twitter

Offline TiffanyTurner

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I wasn't aware that you'd ever used Vellum.

I actually can't recall seeing any flourishes I haven't seen in trad-pubbed books, but most of that is controlled by user choices. If you don't want the flourishes, you don't have to have them. As far as blandness is concerned, given the widely differing capabilities of various ereaders and other hardware, I would think the blander the better in some respects.

I probably wouldn't have bothered with Vellum just for ebooks. I was happy with the ones I produced pre-Vellum. The ability to rapidly produce a good print PDF, though, is priceless to me.

Thank you everyone for your comments. They are really helping. I mean, when you get to the formatting step, you have that option to do it yourself or higher someone. Since I'm tight on money, I'm trying to cut some costs. I agree with Bill, it can take hours to do the TOC yourself and a huge headache. Vellum is worth the investment if you have a lot of books to format. I am taking some other books out of KU and having them go wide. So, I'll need to format a whole bunch more, and I upgraded my Mac to hopefully be able to run Vellum.

But I did try your suggestions and the PDF I translated through Calibre didn't create a good PDF. In order to make a professional one, it is looking more like I'll have to do it on Vellum. I'll keep the ebook on Draft2Digital, and it will look a little different. Since it's a children's book, I do sell a lot of paperbacks. You kind of need both when selling children's books. Since I have a lot of other books to format after this one, it is looking more and more a good idea to buy Vellum. I like what Draft2Digital does for ebook formatting, but it is kind of sucking for PDF and Print. Well, this is how you learn, right?

Plus, it is to note, I do have a Mac, not a PC. Not sure if this has to do with why I'm losing the TOC in the PDF from D2D. It could be. I just updated the operating system too. So, you know, just trying to problem solve this can give any good Indie writer a big headache.

Hope it helps others having the same prob out there though. ;-) I do panel talks on self-publishing locally, so all this experience is passed on to people starting out and learning about self-publishing. I've just learned everything from over the last 10 years. Going to add this to my bag of tricks now that I'll share with others with the same prob.  ;)
The Lost Secret of Fairies
The Lost Secret of the Green Man
$0.99-$2.99 on Kindle
New Kindle Release:
The Lost Secret of Dragonfire
$3.99
Children's Adventure/Fantasy series
www.tiffany-turner.com
Blog: http://crystalkeeper.wordpress.com

Offline TiffanyTurner

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Okay. I've been still working this problem, since $250 is a lot to consider before buying Vellum. And the husband added, is there any other way to do this that might be cheaper?

So, I went to my monthly self-publish/Indie author support group, and put out the question and the problems I've been having. A fellow author recommended a formatting software program called Jutoh. It seems to be far cheaper, like $30. But I'm wondering, will it be good? Do I fork out the $30 to just try it out?

Has anybody on Kboards used Jutoh, and what do you think if you have? Love some feedback before I try it out.
The Lost Secret of Fairies
The Lost Secret of the Green Man
$0.99-$2.99 on Kindle
New Kindle Release:
The Lost Secret of Dragonfire
$3.99
Children's Adventure/Fantasy series
www.tiffany-turner.com
Blog: http://crystalkeeper.wordpress.com

Offline notjohn

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That could be true, but on the other hand, D2D would have been deluged with problems if it produced ebooks without a TOC. It sounds as if there's some flaw in the routine for PDF creation. Or perhaps their assumption is that a TOC isn't necessary in a print novel. It might be worth contacting them about it if the OP is interested.

I can testify that there's nothing whatever wrong with D2D's ebooks if one uploads an epub. I send them the identical epub I upload to the KDP, though with an included cover. (It's not that I ADD the cover, exactly, but that I deleted it from the version that went to KDP.)

But you're quite right. D2D couldn't have prospered if its ebooks, however uploaded, lacked an actual or html TOC (or a virtual or logical one, for that matter!).
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Offline Speaker-To-Animals

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I'm not suggesting that D2D has a problem with Tables of Contents. In fact, quite the opposite. I'm suggesting that they don't and the source file has problems that may have affected an ebook as well as a PDF.