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Why do some epubs look better than others?
#1  GnRFan79 09-22-2022, 04:07 PM
I’m talking specifically about epub files sent to Kindle via email, either direct or via the Kindle IOS app.

I’ve found that some epubs come through to the Kindle and look great - the formatting is good, chapters are in place etc.

Whereas other epubs come through and the formatting is really poor - no paragraphs, no chapters etc.

Is this all due to how the epub was originally created?

Is there a way to easily copy the formatting from a good/well formatted epub and apply that to a poorly formatted epub?
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#2  jhowell 09-22-2022, 04:38 PM
Yes.
No.
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#3  Sirtel 09-22-2022, 04:50 PM
When an epub is poorly formatted, then the only way to fix that is to edit it manually (in Sigil or in the Calibre editor).
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#4  GnRFan79 09-22-2022, 05:41 PM
Would that mean editing each page? Or editing a specific part of the code in one place to affect the whole epub?
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#5  Sirtel 09-22-2022, 06:12 PM
Quote GnRFan79
Would that mean editing each page? Or editing a specific part of the code in one place to affect the whole epub?
Editing the code, not each page.
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#6  JSWolf 09-22-2022, 06:18 PM
@GnRFan79, Can you name some of these poor ePub that come through with no paragraphs and/or chapters? That just seems odd if the source ePub has these.
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#7  jhowell 09-22-2022, 07:04 PM
Quote Sirtel
Editing the code, not each page.
Usually true. However an EPUB that was originally sourced from a PDF or scan may require extensive page by page clean up.
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#8  Sirtel 09-22-2022, 10:40 PM
Quote jhowell
Usually true. However an EPUB that was originally sourced from a PDF or scan may require extensive page by page clean up.
That's not worth the bother, IMO. Better to read the original PDF.
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#9  haertig 09-23-2022, 03:07 AM
Quote jhowell
Usually true. However an EPUB that was originally sourced from a PDF or scan may require extensive page by page clean up.
I rarely mess with PDFs. Sometimes I'll have a PDF that I really want to see on my eReader. But Kindles, and probably every other eReader, are horrid for viewing PDFs (larger tablets that you can quickly/easily zoom back and forth are much better).

I have been able to rescue some PDFs though. Most of the time the problem is that pages have a header and a footer after being converted to EPUBS, and these headers/footers don't match page boundaries on your eReader. I have had some luck in Calibre's editor after initial conversion to EPUB. Sometimes you can look through the book's markup text and come up with a regular expression that matches the header/footer. Then you can "search" for this regular expression and "delete" it wherever you find it. For all I know I am ending up with invalid EPUBs doing things like this. But if they display well enough on my device for me to read them, I call it good enough. I'm no publishing these for the general public.

I have not done this in eons. IIRC, I didn't have to do it on a page by page basis. But I don't think I could do it once, for the entire book in one fell swoop, either. But I really don't remember. What I think I remember is having to do it once for part0001,html, once for part0002.html, ... etc. However, I am not very good at book editing and I could have very easily missed "the easy way" to do this. It is doable my clunky way - for some books - if you are really determined to turn that PDF into an EPUB. And if you understand regular expression matching.
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#10  jhowell 09-23-2022, 10:17 AM
Quote Sirtel
That's not worth the bother, IMO. Better to read the original PDF.
I agree, if you have the original PDF. However the person sending the EPUB to Amazon may not be the person who created it. To me the original question implied that only a badly formatted EPUB was available.
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