How to turn a text into an eBook

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Lluis Enric Mayans

The diffusion of ebooks in recent years has increased tremendously. Anyone who has a book, a story or a poem can self-publish, even in this period of editorial crisis, thanks to the online tools available on the Internet, which allow turn any text into an ebook.

The ebook formats are:

  • LIT - Microsoft home format.
  • FB2 - FictionBook, is a specific Russian format for scientific and technical literature.
  • PDB - developed for the Palm OS platform.
  • MOBI - MobiPocket, is the native format of Amazon Kindle.
  • ePub - the standard currently most used.

The choice of the type of ebook is also conditioned by many other factors, first of all the audience we want to address. Currently there are various formats for digital publishing on the market linked to the specific reader, used to view its contents. Amazon with its Kindle, for example, has given a significant boost to the Mobi format, developed for its platform. The more widespread the format, the greater the potential audience for the work performed. To read a MOBI file you need to download the free Kindle application from the Amazon site, while to transform the original file format you can use the famous Caliber conversion software.

Another element to consider is the method of dissemination. You can choose to allow their duplication freely or to apply special digital rights: DRM, Digital Rights Management. The DRM used by Adobe to protect ebooks can be read by up to 6 devices authorized by it Adobe ID (obtainable by registering on the site Furthermore, this type of ebook cannot be printed or copied, and is not compatible with Kindle devices and applications.

There are numerous PC programs on the Internet that can help you make your first ebook.

Before you download them, you need to decide exactly what digital book you want to get. The Portable Document Format o PDF, by Adobe, is different from those multimedia products that integrate sound, movies and animations within themselves. Both are full-fledged ebooks. If your goal is to take a ready-made product and transform it into a digital product without intervening in any way, then you just need a converter like PDF Converter which allows you to turn a text file into PDF.

How to create an ebook

To create interactive and multimedia ebooks from scratch, however, you have to turn to more complex programs rich in tools such as Jutoh area of Anthemion Software, available on the official website in the basic version at a cost of 30 euros + VAT and in the Plus version at 60 euros + VAT. It can be used for free on trial, with some limited functionality. After downloading, installing and launching it, you will notice that the workspace is divided into three parts:

  • theOrganizer and Panel di Control, located on the left, which allows you to move between the various sections of the document.
  • Le Range, positioned on the right, the sections containing the commands to be applied.
  • The Preview, positioned in the center, to display the result.

To set up the structure of your ebook with Jutoh you will have to divide the book into sections, which can be reached through an index called Table of Contents. The index consists of a series of internal links to the text.

By clicking on the area Control Panel, the window will be activated Project Properties which allows you to act on every single aspect of the ebook. In addition to changing the cover, styles, indexes and display options you will be able to add metadata and various information.

The menu Document, located in the Bar to the commands, will facilitate you in adding to the project, on which you are working, any type of external document including text files, images, sounds, videos and links both internal to the text and external, which refer to web pages.

Once the document has been created, you can use the key Check, present in Control Panel, to verify that there are no errors. If everything is perfect, choose the final format of the ebook and launch the procedure Compile.

How to turn a text into an ebook

If you want to understand instead how to turn a text into an ebook then you have to try eCub. This is a great product always made by Anthemion Software, which has features embedded in a clean and very simple working interface. eCub for several reasons, is still at version 1.12 and is an excellent starting point for those who have never created ebooks or made digital publications, however, requires a minimum of knowledge of the English language.

After downloading eCub from link, at the end of the installation start it and choose New Project for creating a new publication. Enter the necessary information and select the folder containing the files you want to use as a starting point, in HTML o TXT. Now create both the file at the same time ePub be that MobiPocket.

eCub offers three import options:

  • from an existing file
  • from an empty project
  • from a previous publication.

The second option is the less interesting one since eCub it does not come with tools suitable for creating an ebook from scratch.

When the import is complete before clicking Next to create your first ebook, you need to specify additional options, such as how you want to import already paginated HTML files and more.

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