3 Replies Latest reply on Sep 5, 2011 7:00 AM by BobLevine

    Need help with basic steps in creating ebook

    Martin S... Level 1

      I have a confession: I constantly use workarounds instead of stopping and learning the proper way of using Indesign to create ebooks. I wouldn't say I do it because I'm lazy, but rather because I'm simply inept lol. These are some of the basic steps I take:


      1. create new document: include master text frame (because I want page numbers to show)

      2. paste unformatted text into document

      3. adjust size of master frame to give text suitable margins (since its an ebook, right/left margins same on opposing pages.)

      4. highlight all text, adjust before- and after-paragraph spacing to half of the character leading (so bottom of text is at same point for each page)

      5. go to chapter titles; do page-break so title has its own page; highlight title, choose font, size; create new character style; apply style to other chapter titles (is it possible to create a ctrl + number shortcut to apply character styles?). Notice I didn't create a character style for body text. Should I do that first?

      6. insert page number markers on both master pages, then cover page number with white box on first page of chapters.

      7. drop pictures into textbox so that if more text is added, pictures move with the text.


      That's basically what I do when I create an ebook. Any suggestions as to better/proper way to do these things would be very appreciated.

        • 1. Re: Need help with basic steps in creating ebook
          BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          1. Master text frames have nothing to do with page numbers and in most cases are totally unnecessary. Set the margins appropriately and place your text.


          2. Without knowing what you're starting with it's impossible to tell if that's a good idea or not. My gut says is it's not. See number 1.


          3. See number 1.


          4. This is what paragraph styles are for.


          5. See number 4.


          6. This is what multiple master pages are for. Stop doing that.


          7. Well, you finally got one right. As my people would say...mazel tov.


          Now, it's time for you stop being inept (your word, not mine) and start learning the right way to do this. First thing you do is buy Sandee Cohen's Visual Quick Start Guide. It's the best InDesign book on the market for beginners. http://amzn.to/plsvxy


          Secondly, check out the video training on Lynda.com. This link will get you a free one week trial: http://bit.ly/fcGpiI



          • 2. Re: Need help with basic steps in creating ebook
            Martin S... Level 1

            Thanks Bob; i've got some handle on master pages now; and have started using paragraph styles. For chapter headings, I am using a master page on which there is a text box with the chapter heading font and size that I've decided on, so that when say on page 50 I reach chapter 3, I can apply the master page, then ctrl shift click to bring the text box out (which was on the master page, then change the chapter to whatever it is. Is this anywhere near right?


            Thanks for the link, I'll look into it

            • 3. Re: Need help with basic steps in creating ebook
              BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

              FWIW, I wouldn't do it that way. I would create a snippet for the chapter title text frame, apply the master page and drag the snippet to the page. If you left your preferences for snippets at the default, then you can cmd/ctrl+drag them out to have the positioned in the exact spot they were created from.