Conversion Experience

So Quest for Employment is being put into iBookstore form.  By hand.  So far I’m going to say I’m finding iBook Author friendly in all the wrong ways, and not exactly helpful.  There’s some slick elements to it, but the hand-holding functions really don’t help.

It’s very odd, but I I suddenly realized just how many formats I have to work with – not on an intellectual level, but a visceral one.

  • First there’s the main doc, which I just do In Libre Office.  I do a few formatting tricks (avoiding bullet points) to make sure it’s very cross-compatible.
  • I bring it over into Jutoh.
  • In Jutoh I configure it for ePub (for Nook) and Mobipocket (for Kindle).
  • I view it in Calibre to make sure it looks OK, and maybe other devices.
  • Since formatting the book often reveals things to fix, once I’ve done these conversions, I get the spacing and organization right for exporting to PDF from Libre office.
  • Now, if I want a print book, then I also have to take a file and format it to have proper page locations, spacing, etc. for a print format.  This is exported as PDF Inevitably I’m going to blow tens of dollars running prints to get that right, or burn my printer out.  Or both.

It’s educational, but it teaches me one thing – I bloody well love being an author.  Otherwise I wouldn’t do this stuff.

– Steven Savage

Steven Savage is a Geek 2.0 writer, speaker, blogger, and job coach.  He blogs on careers at, nerd and geek culture at, and does a site of creative tools at He can be reached at



Apple’s Easy iBook Author Tool

As everyone predicted, Apple released an ez-iBook maker and there's controversy over it's features and possible lock-in since you can only publish to the iBookstore. Admittedly that's not surprising as it's a specialized ePub format so you can only read it as an iBook (that and I'm not seeing a lot of anger over Kindle . . .).

So what do I think?

  • This was inevitable. Apple had a platform and a book system and of course an authoring system was coming.
  • Content is king, but delivery pays the bills. This is also an inevitable financial model. Right now being a gatekeeper pays.
  • Amazon is going to follow suit so fast it'll make your head spin.
  • I'm not sure what, if anything, Microsoft will do.
  • This might mean more effective freelance writers – and more jobs.
  • This also means that rating systems are going to be even more important, as is good relations. So build that author platform.
  • Have I noted we REALLY NEED a universal book format everyone uses? We do.

Steven Savage