Formatting for Kindle – How to Convert a Document to HTML


So you’ve written a great article, a short story, a novel that’s had you drinking more coffee and sleeping less than when you were studying for your college finals, and now you can’t upload it to Kindle because it’s not in HTML format, don’t you just love it when that happens? The problem doesn’t come with the conversion itself, if you know how to do it, that is. But if you have no clue about how you’ll make this happen and you have to go trough a few more sleepless nights to get to do it, chances are that your sweet ol’ self is gonna turn into the Incredible Hulk after a short while. There are different ways to convert your documents to HTML. It will all depend on what format are you using to write in. So, let’s start with Word to HTML conversion, later I’ll discuss conversion from PDF format.

1. FIND YOUR DOCUMENT- from the File Menu you’ll see in Microsoft Word, select your saved document and open it, you can’t make a conversion with it closed even if you have selected it, so keep this in mind.

2. UPDATE YOUR DOCUMENT- not all the content that you have put on your file in Word format will appear in HTML. Numbers, and some images, are better left out. Once you have taken away this things, you need to save your document again.

3. CONVERT IT- When saving your document now, go to File, Click Save As and you’ll get the option to save as a Webpage or Save as HTML. You can select either one and click Save. Now, open a webpage and go to your documents file, select this document to open it, it will do so in HTML format.

For PDF formats, I suggest saving them into Word first and then converting them into HTML format, but you can also save these documents as HTML using Acrobat Professional.

Now That you have saved your document as HTML, you’ll need to clean up the code. The formatting in an HTML document is marked by tags, which are text enclosed in angle brackets, for example is a tag found in HTML formats. The language used in HTML is fairly simple once mastered. It would be a good idea to get a tutorial guide to help you learn HTML coding.

4. FORMATTING THE DOCUMENT- the Kindle does not support the use of margins in ways you may be accustomed to. I suggest you use a style sheet to format your book, and don’t forget to use CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) as much as you can. Some CSS rules, unfortunately, are not supported or only supported minimally in the Kindle: most of the have to do with margins and fonts. The best control over font sizes can be achieved using heading tags: (



, etc.). The and tags will allow you to adjust the size up or down a couple of sizes.

Use the custom tags to mark page breaks in the text. Try to include one in front of every chapter of your book.

Now that your book has been formatted, preview it by upload it before publishing it to see how it looks.


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