eBook Maestro  

Get Pages Ready

If you know HTML or have some experience in creating websites, the entire process of preparing pages can be briefly described like this. Turn your eBook into a website. Place all HTML and image files in one folder (let us call it the book folder). Save eBook chapters to separate files (chapter1.html, chapter2.html…). If you are creating a commercial eBook and want to require registration for accessing the paid part of the eBook, create a new folder in the eBook folder (for protected files). Save chapters available after registration to this folder.

Format the text and insert images. Add links for moving to the next/previous chapter to each page to make the navigation through it more convenient.

If you want to make it still more convenient, add the table of contents that will be displayed on the left panel of the eBook. To do it, create a new folder in the eBook folder (for the left panel). Save the HTML file with the table of contents pointing to eBook pages to it.

The file structure of the eBook should look approximately like this …

You will find ready-made templates for eBooks at our site. Just download them, unpack them and insert your text into them.

HTML

At this stage you should turn your eBook into HTML documents. If you do not know HTML, we recommend that you use a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) HTML Editor. NVU (a free HTML editor that does not require the knowledge of HTML) is one of such editors. Use it to format text, insert images and create navigation between pages. This stage of creating your eBook is no less important than typing the text. The comfort of your reader will depend on how good formatting and navigation will be.

Book folder

Start from creating a folder for your eBook. It will contain all HTML files, images and other files that you want to insert into your eBook. You will compile this folder with eBook Maestro later. All files stored in this folder (including its subfolders) will be included into the eBook after the compilation so try to get rid of unnecessary files in this folder.

We will use the folder named eBook in this tutorial. You will prepare files for your eBook in this folder.

Images

If your eBook contains images, create a separate folder for them (for example, Images). It is not required, but it will be more convenient for you to store images and other additional files in different folders. Copy all your images to this folder.

Attention: avoid using bitmap (.bmp) files because they are not compressed and will considerably increase the size of your eBook. Convert them into jpeg (.jpg) files of a smaller size. Use any image editor for that, for example, IrfanView. It is a free image viewer that can also convert images and apply effects to them.

Pages

Now split the eBook into HTML files.

- Create a new HTML page and save it to the eBook folder.
- Copy/paste the first chapter from your eBook.
- Format the text and insert images.
- Add text or image hyperlinks for moving between pages at the top or at the bottom of the page.

Repeat the same steps to prepare HTML files for each chapter of the eBook.

Protected pages

If you are going to sell the eBook and want to make some pages available only after the registration, you should create a separate subfolder inside the eBook folder (for example, Protected). It is required. All pages and images that you want to protect from unregistered users must be stored in this folder. Subfolders located in this folder will also be protected. Move all pages and images you want to protect to this folder.

If your HTML Editor has a website file management system, use it to move pages from one folder to another. The HTML Editor will automatically fix all hyperlinks in pages when you move them. If there is no such system, edit all hyperlinks manually and make sure that all pages are linked correctly after you move pages.

Tip. Arrange the eBook in such a way that free pages will be useful for the reader from the first lines. He must want to continue reading and read the eBook to the end, which means he will have to register and pay money. Spend some time to arrange paid/free pages. Finally, it will influence how many people who download your eBook will buy it.

Table of contents

If you want to make reading your eBook still more convenient, add a Table of Contents to it. It is an additional page that is displayed on the supplementary (left) panel. The user can hide and show this panel when necessary.

Create a separate subfolder inside the eBook folder (for example, LeftPanel). It is required. All pages that will be displayed in the left panel must be stored in this folder. Create a new HTML page and save it to the left panel folder.

Type the table of contents and add hyperlinks to HTML pages of your eBook. When you compile the eBook, the page with the Table of contents will be displayed in the Left Panel. Clicks on links in the table of contents will open the corresponding pages in the Main Panel.

Congratulations ! You have just created HTML pages that are ready to be converted into an electronic book.