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Do You Care About Your Reader?

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April 12, 2013 by S. K. Stewart

headthumpA notice came over Google+ from an author that his book was now ready and he wanted feedback. The first problem for me as a book reviewer was no offer to give the book to reviewers.I don’t limit my reviews to free books, but it always helps push me to download it.

The second problem for me was the preview of the Kindle product. I had decided to read the first few pages and if the story was compelling, buy the book, and then post a review. Honestly, I didn’t read a word of the preview.

The e-book was so poorly formatted that even the Kindle preview on Amazon couldn’t make it look better. My immediate thought was if this author doesn’t care enough to make sure the e-book is easy to read, he doesn’t care enough to be sure that his story is well written.

I could be wrong about the writing. I may never know. But this illustrates the importance of taking care with your e-product. Your reader deserves the best; A well written story, which has been edited carefully, and formatted correctly.

This isn’t the first time this has happened. A few months ago I bought an e-book from a bestselling author and large traditional publishing house. The formatting was horrible. Part of the text was black on black. So this problem isn’t limited to independent publishers.

There is really no reason for a Kindle book, or any e-book for that matter, to not be formatted properly. Amazon offers several ways to check the document before hitting the publish button. You can even send it to yourself or upload it to your e-reader to check.

I know how discouraging it can be when you’re excited about getting your creative work out for all to see and you have to tinker with formatting. It’s your baby, and like a new parent you want to show everyone. Like that new baby, you want to show off your new e-book right away. Also like a new baby, you want your e-book to look its best when put out for public viewing.

One of the great things about e-book publishing is that mistakes can be corrected right away. After launching my first Kindle book, I found a page that the formatting was off. I went to my file, corrected, and uploaded the new one. As a friend of mine says, “Easy, peasy.”

Don’t sabotage your marketing efforts by skipping the details. Take a few extra minutes, or even a few extra days, to be sure that your e-product is top notch. Your readers will love you for it.

Read It’s The Details

Do you have a peeve about e-books?

What is your number one formatting problem?

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