Formatting Requirements

Kindle (ebook)

Your Kindle document as it finally appears will be single spaced, first paragraphs all indented .5”, with chapter headings linked to the table of contents at the front of the online document. Submission in this format is highly recommended to facilitate upload. Black and white images can be placed in the document if the writer desires, including (with the artist’s permission) portions of the cover art. Bio, introduction, foreword, dedications and all other peripheral content should be submitted along with actual manuscript and will be published in the following sequence:

First page – Title (with or without art)

Second page – Copyright and credits

Third page – Table of contents (linked to chapters)

Fourth page – Foreword

Fifth page – Introduction, thanks, quotes and/or dedications

Sixth page – Novel begins

End of book – Author bio

Note that the novel itself will be set as “Justify”, not “Left Align”, in the final product so as to look best in Kindle. The same CAN be done with the peripherals like the bio and foreword, but generally those are either “Center” or “Left Align” because they’re short reads and don’t require the same flow as the manuscript. For the most part it is simply esthetics that we use to decide how to align the peripheral stuff and the writer will have input and feedback on it if they so desire.

Fonts are available for titles beyond the typical Times New Roman and Calibri, but those two fonts are the options most commonly used in novel text so they are recommended (although we can vary if needed).

Kindle uploads are given to the writer to review, adjustments are made, and the final upload document is provided to the writer as both a MS Word document (alterable) and a pdf file (non-alterable) made from it.

WHAT THE WRITER NEEDS TO DO: For submissions, the most important thing is that the writer keep her or his manuscript formatting AS SIMPLE AS POSSIBLE. Don’t put section breaks in. Don’t space or tab over to start your paragraphs…use the indent bar at the top of the document to pull the indent over to .5 for the whole document. Don’t vary font size, line spacing, paragraph styles, margins or anything we might have to work around to format your document for Kindle. Even page breaks have to be removed because your working page breaks won’t be the same as they are on the Kindle document. Use a simple symbol like (~) or (—) between sections and don’t worry about centering it, just keep it left aligned like the rest. This will all facilitate production and reduce costs.


The finished books will be 5.5 inches wide and 8.5 inches tall, which we have found makes for the most “professional looking” item on a bookshelf. Others use 6 x 9 in an attempt to cut down on page count, but most of those don’t use templates with the tight efficiency of ours and they simply use up the pages they attempt to save with extra blank space. Our books feature all of what’s in the Kindle version, including the artwork (if chosen by the writer as an option), but rather than having a linked T.O.C. (which is kind of impossible if you think about it), the pages have very optimized numbers centered at the bottom and—if the book is an anthology or a short story collection—varying headers featuring both current story title and writer’s name (anthos will feature varying names, of course).

Paperback interiors are created using the Open Office system and are basically taken directly from the Kindle MS Word (.doc) upload. Open Office makes all this highly professional interior design much easier and cleaner and produces a very impressive final look that puts the books we format on a visual par with the major publishing companies. Your book will look like they made it, in other words. The only thing we can’t give you is their logo.

For upload to Createspace, you will receive a pdf file (non-alterable), which is their preferred upload format. You will also be given the Open Office document for your files, but it is important to note that unless it is opened in the O.O. system itself, it will not “look right”. If you have Open Office or download it, open that .odt file (the O.O. document) through that and it WILL look like the pdf. BUT remember, you will be uploading the pdf…the odt is just for your records, in case you later want to make corrections to your text.


As with the Kindle upload file, the writer will receive the pdf of the paperback interior to review as well. In both cases, very careful inspection of the document is required to help minimize the possibility of having to make post-release corrections (which require re-uploads, waiting periods and quite possibly further mailings of paperback “proof” copies).