Accepted formats and choosing EPUB
Here are the formats in which you can publish your book:
- ePub: the standard eBook format. We recommend this format as it is compatible with every one of our online bookstore partners and can be read on most devices. The ePub you upload must be validated by the ePubCheck tool.
- mobi: Amazon's proprietary format, for reading eBooks on Kindle apps and devices. In the case of the reflowable mobi file, the mobi you'll upload will be distributed to stores accepting this format but not to Amazon, who will instead create its own mobi file for its store. In the case of the fixed layout mobi (KF8), the file you'll upload will be the one used for sale on Amazon.
- PDF: although not recommended, as it won't be published on major bookstores, you can upload a unprotected PDF file;
- iBooks: you can also upload in Apple's proprietary format. This is only for iTunes' bookstore: for reading on iPads, iPhones and the iBook app on Mac. Note: The Apple iBookstore and app also sells and supports ePubs.
Why choose the .ePub format
We highly recommend the .ePub format because it is supported by most devices and reading apps.
Since 2007, .ePub has been the official standard of the International Digital Publishing Forum (http://idpf.org/). The main advantage is that it is “reflowable”. In simple terms, the flow of text is optimised and adapted to the display device and settings. This means that all your readers will have the optimum reading experience, whatever their device. For more information, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EPUB and http://idpf.org/epub
There is also a Fixed Layout ePub, for books like comics or children books that need a fixed disposition in pages.
We also recommend the .ePub format because eBooks sold in PDF format could be not accepted by major stores.
How to get the .ePub format
So now you're convinced you want an ePub file, how can you get it?
There are 3 ways:
- You can create your own ePub eBook using StreetLib Write, the authoring tool to produce digital publishing content independently. Simply write your book with the editor of your choice (e.g. Word), sign up at write.streetlib.com, and build a professional-quality EPUB file. StreetLib Write is free, and requires no expert knowledge or skills of the software or formats.
- There are also other tools for creating your own ePub. However, be aware that saving text files as .ePub in Google Docs and other word processors will create an eBook that does not conform with bookstores' requirements. It will therefore not be accepted. So please make sure any software you use meet their requirements before starting.
Once your .ePub file is created, it must be validated. This is done using EPubCheck software, either:
- By using the IDPF's online epubcheck service
- By downloading, installing and running epubcheck software, available from GitHub.
eBooks created with StreetLib Write are already validated. StreetLib only distributes epub files that have passed the EPubCheck validation.
- Alternatively, you can ask for the conversion from StreetLib Ready.