Mobileread
Converting from MS Word 2007 (.docx) to MOBI
#1  DreamWriter 11-08-2010, 02:51 PM
Hello,

I am brand-new to this forum and also to the world of eBooks, so please be patient with me. I am thinking about buying a Kindle 3G, but don't have any eReader yet. I have used the forum's search feature, but I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by ALL the information available here!

I have a book that's in both MS Word 2007 (.docx) and PDF formats. I would like to get it into a format that Kindle can read (MOBI?). From what I can gather from searching the forum, I need to get the Word document into unfiltered HTML format first. Then I can convert into MOBI by using Calibre? Is that correct? Or is there a free conversion program that can do this more directly (from .docx straight to MOBI), that produces excellent results?

If I do use Calibre, are there intermediate steps that I need to take to clean up the messy HTML that's produced using Word's "save as unfiltered HTML" before Calibre can properly convert it to MOBI? If so, what do you suggest? Is the BookCreator macro what I need to do that most efficiently? I do know HTML, but I don't know exactly what needs to be corrected for proper conversion.

Do I need to specify margins at all, or does Calibre do this automatically? If I do need to specify margins, what ARE the suggested margins? Do I need to specify that there's a page break before the start of every chapter? Having never even used an eBook reader before, I don't know what the output is supposed to look like!

Thanks to anyone for your assistance with this. I know that I will catch on quickly once I know that I'm heading in the right direction!
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#2  =X= 11-08-2010, 07:26 PM
Well the answer to your questions is yes.
You can

- Export Word to a filtered html and use calibre to create an epub
- Format your word document with BookCreator then build an eBook *

Actually BookCreator essentially does the first step for you. After you format the eBook based on your liking. You can use a GUI driven macro from withing BookCreator to create an eBook for you. In the background it exports the file to an HTML then has calibre create an ebook from there. The only problem is there is no batch file conversion in BookCreator.

I don't know if you're happy with the formatting in your docx file, if you are, then you have a few other options. You can save your docx as an "OpenDocument Text (odt)" book and calibre can convert from there. Or you can save your word documents as a "Rich Text Format(rtf)" and K3 reads that for naively, no conversion required.

Personally I like all my documents to have TOC, chapter breaks and additional formatting so I tend to modify all my books with BookCreator before converting them to MOBI.

=X=
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#3  DreamWriter 11-08-2010, 08:18 PM
Thank you so much for your very helpful reply, =X=!

I'm sure that this will all make more sense to me once I download and try BookCreator and Calibre, but I am still confused as to whether I need to create margins for MOBI (and other eBook formats), like I do for print files. Can you give me some guidance regarding that? Also, do I need to make the page a certain size, or is that all done through BookCreator/Calibre?

Thanks again!
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#4  dwig 11-08-2010, 09:35 PM
Quote DreamWriter
Thank you so much for your very helpful reply, =X=!

I'm sure that this will all make more sense to me once I download and try BookCreator and Calibre, but I am still confused as to whether I need to create margins for MOBI (and other eBook formats), like I do for print files. Can you give me some guidance regarding that? Also, do I need to make the page a certain size, or is that all done through BookCreator/Calibre?

Thanks again!
1. Either no margins or absolute minimum margins. The outer frame/body of the ereader device serves for visual margin. The text should fill as much of the device's display as possible. Most format conversions will ignore the margins in an original file if that file is not a true ebook format.

2. Ebooks don't have pages and shouldn't force any page-like structure. Text is flowed at the discretion of the reader device. This makes the original document's page size a non-issue.

Everyone has the personal favorite set of tools. I currently use Calibre to create ebooks from non-ebook formats (e.g. RTF, HTML, ...). I usually generate an ePub format ebook in Calibre as a first step. I then use Sigil, a free ePub editor, to tweak the book formatting before using Calibre to convert the ePub into the desired final format, which for me is a MOBI file for my K3.
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#5  DreamWriter 11-09-2010, 02:19 AM
Thanks, dwig!!!
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#6  eping 11-18-2010, 03:47 AM
Why not use Mobipocket Reader to convert Word to mobi directly,
Isn't it the easiest way?

And here's an detailed article of word to kindle by Sarah
http://selfpublishingadventure.com/converting-word-files-to-kindle-books/
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#7  DreamWriter 11-18-2010, 08:03 PM
Thanks for the suggestion, eping. That's a very helpful article.

I didn't know about Mobipocket when I began the conversion from MS Word to MOBI. If I had, I would've tried that! Instead, I used the command-line program KindleGen.

I probably went about it the hard way, but I saved the file as filtered HTML from MS Word and then I cleaned out all the garbage code manually. Fortunately, I already knew HTML! Then I manually created .opf and .ncx files using examples that came with KindleGen and created the MOBI file using that program.

I just ordered a Kindle 3G, which will arrive on Monday, so I'll be able to test the file then. I'm still tweaking things, but it looks very good on Kindle Previewer.

KindleGen and Kindle Previewer
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#8  DDHarriman 11-20-2010, 12:32 PM
Hi

If you want, you can check my post in the forums (from point 2 on) about creating mobi eBooks from word files using Mobipocket Creator (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...68&postcount=2).
Maybe you can find some useful information in it.

Best regards,
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#9  DreamWriter 11-20-2010, 03:52 PM
Thanks very much DDHarriman. I will try Mobipocket Creator on any MS Word conversion projects in the future. Your instructions are very helpful.
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#10  daesdaemar 12-02-2010, 03:48 PM
My quick/easy/dirty way to format a Word file to read on the Kindle 3 is to format it to a page size of 3.6 x 4.8 inches with 0.1 inch margins all around and at an appropriate font/size (I like Times Roman at 12 pt). I then convert this to a PDF (I set up a custom page size in Acrobat at 3.6 x 4.8 inches). And, Voila, I have a PDF perfectly formatted for the Kindle. The whole process takes less than a minute.
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