Book Review Observations

I read most books on my Kindle Fire. Lately, I’ve been surprised at the quality of ebooks. As an author myself, I discovered that when I use Word, or Scrivener for a manuscript, there are a few things to check before uploading to the Kindle Creator, or whatever you use to upload your ebook to Amazon. Let me share a few of my observations.

I read my Kindle set with a black background. In numerous books, I’ve discovered sections of text that were copied and pasted into the manuscript with a white background around the text. There is nothing wrong with adding and changing text, except in Word, you must do a cut and paste special, and select unformatted text. That gets rid of the background settings you brought forward from your other document.

I double-check my manuscript by going into Word settings to set the entire document with a black background. This is a quick and easy way to find all of the ghosted text. I learned this one the hard way! If you leave the background on your manuscript white, you will never notice the cut and paste issues until someone like me points it out.

Another issue I see are text changes. For no reason, I can discern, the text will suddenly change to another font, often much smaller in size than the original text. It actually overrides the text settings on the Kindle. The only thing I could think of was that the text was copied from another document and pasted correctly, but the font and size were never aligned to the rest of the document. If you do a cut and paste, always check your font as compared to the rest of your document.

Before I upload my manuscript, I always do a command A (I’m on a MAC) to select all the text. Then, I select the correct font for the entire manuscript. I don’t change the size of the text because that will affect your titles and headings. It’s my last effort to make sure all of the text is uniform.

These issues affect your book’s quality and make it seem like you were in such a hurry to publish your book that you didn’t make it the best presentation of your writing. It breaks up the rhythm of your writing, which makes it harder to read. Plus, these formatting issues make it harder to review.

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I hope these tips help other authors. Have you discovered something similar when reading a book on your Kindle? Share it here so we can figure out how to correct the issue.

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