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Announcing Kindle Comic Creator


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Showing 1-25 of 166 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 11, 2013 4:25:14 PM PDT
We are pleased to announce Kindle Comic Creator, a free tool for authors & publishers to turn their comics, graphic novels and manga into great looking Kindle books. Kindle Comic Creator makes it fast and easy for authors and publishers to import artwork, create their preferred customer reading experience and preview how their book will look on Kindle devices. Kindle Comic Creator eliminates the need for authors and publishers to understand the complexities of HTML/CSS in publishing their book on Kindle.

Kindle Comic Creator makes it fast and easy to create a guided navigation experience with Kindle Panel Views. Kindle Comic Creator automatically detects and recommends Kindle Panel View placement in your book. Kindle Comic Creator also makes it simple to create books with double page spread, facing pages and right-to-left page turns.

Kindle Comic Creator accepts the most popular graphic file types, so authors are free to create art in their preferred design tools. Kindle Comic Creator can import single or multi-page images in jpg, pdf, tiff, png and ppm formats. Kindle Comic Creator also makes it quick to preview how the content will look across Kindle devices. With the integrated preview feature, authors can validate that their books look beautiful on Kindle Fire tablets and Kindle eInk readers.

We encourage you to see how easy it is to publish your graphic novel, comic or manga book on Kindle. Please visit http://amazon.com/kc2 to learn more about Kindle Comic Creator and to download Kindle Comic Creator.

We expect to make ongoing improvements to the Kindle Publishing Tools and encourage you to send us feedback in this forum or to kindle-publishing-tools@amazon.com

Thanks,
The Kindle Team

Posted on Apr 12, 2013 7:18:30 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 8:51:05 PM PDT
Charles says:
Nice, but Jutoh 2 is a LOT easier to use, is much more versatile, and can create ePubs aimed at a variety of devices.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 15, 2013 11:36:32 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 15, 2013 11:37:11 PM PDT
Good!
But language setting is no good.
"英語" means English, Japanese is "日本語", and Chinese is "中文".

Posted on Apr 16, 2013 10:46:45 AM PDT
Charles, I'm a great admirer of Jutoh, but you must be joking when you say it's easier to use. Within 20 minutes of downloading the Kindle Comic Creator, I had produced a rough Kindle version of my children's book, "The Adventures of Mouse Deer," previously available in print only. Two days later, after more experimenting and refining, I uploaded it for sale on the Kindle store. You can't get much easier than that!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 12:52:40 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 8:50:54 PM PDT
Charles says:
I said Jutoh 2; not Jutoh.

http://www.jutoh.com/preview.htm

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 2:26:30 PM PDT
Thanks, Charles, but I had already downloaded the Jutoh 2 preview and read its documentation before trying the Kindle Comic Creator.

If you're preparing ebooks for multiple platforms, there is really no tool as good as Jutoh. I recommend it often. But for a simple fixed-layout ebook with no bells and whistles that is going just to Kindle, I don't see how anything could be easier than the Kindle Comic Creator. Of course, you still have to deal with variations in how different Kindle readers display your pages -- and that's one reason I took a couple of days to finish my book. But no software can fully protect you from that.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 3:13:36 PM PDT
Yeah, and it's also free!

Posted on Apr 16, 2013 5:34:04 PM PDT
The docs do not give any indication what input format is best to keep book file sizes lower (PDF, jpeg, ?)

Also, any chance Amazon might consider a different delivery fee as big comics or graphic novels will need to be expensive due to their larger size compared to a mostly text ebook.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 5:52:08 PM PDT
I would also very much like to see larger image file sizes allowed. And not just for comics, but other illustrated books as well. This should be a choice left to the content creator, not the retailer.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 8:39:51 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 8:50:33 PM PDT
Charles says:
Thanks Aaron,

What is it about KCC that makes it easier for you? In particular I mean. In Jutoh 2 you define "fixed format" and your page size on start-up along with the amount of pages (which you can of course add or subtract from at any time). Then once the project is started, you can add background images by clicking on the formatting palette to the right where it says "Add Background Image" and browse to the folder you keep your imagaes in. You can set a different background for each page if you want to very easily.

Then to add other non-background images to the pages you simply right-click on the page and choose "Add Image," or choose the same command from the object palette to the right and browse to your image folder. You can drag the image around the page anywhere you like. You can enlarge or shrink it by dragging the corner of it just like in any image program. You can add a border to it by simply clicking on the "Properties" for the image on the object palette and choosing "Add Border" and the border properties including rounded or standard corners. From the object properties you can also choose a different margin or magnification than the defaults.

Adding text is done in the same way. Just right-click and "Add Text" and you'll create a text box which you can type into or paste from a Word processor. Double click on the text box and the text formatting palette will pop-up on the right where you can choose commands just like in Word for font, size, bold, color, styles, etc. You can drag the text boxes around the page and change its size by dragging the corners just like the image files.

You can also choose the Z-order of the text and image files on any page by just clicking on the arrow buttons in the text/object palatte, so you can place the text on top of images etc.

The only thing I can think of that's not terribly intuitive is that you must go into the document configurations and choose to make the book either Childrens or Comic for the OPF file for both ePub and Mobi. Children's is the default if none is chosen.

When you're done, just click on "Compile" and whether or not to make it an ePub or Mobi. An Epub check is built-in.

Of course Jutoh also has a cover creator that's pretty nifty.

I'm having a hard time understanding how KCC can possibly be any easier than that. Aside from choosing Comic or Chidlrens in configurations (which you'll certainly remember after doing it the first time), I just can't think of any way to improve upon the process. Also, I haven't checked the code in KCC yet, but I have torn apart comics and children's books I've made in Jutoh 2 and can tell you that the HTML/CSS is about as perfect as it gets and ten times better that the books I've torn apart that people have made with InDesign.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 8:45:45 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 11:00:28 PM PDT
Charles says:
"The docs do not give any indication what input format is best to keep book file sizes lower (PDF, jpeg, ?)"

PDF is not really an image file, so that's moot. Only use gif for transparent images under 127MB in size. If they're bigger than that, KindleGen will convert them to non-transparent jpgs. Keep all other images in jpg format. KindleGen will convert all png files to either gif or jpg anyway, so don't even bother with those. Comics can have jpgs up to 800MB in size. Children's can have them up to 250MB. However, if you have a LOT of images (I'm not sure how many now), KG will often change their dimensions and compress them more.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 8:56:40 PM PDT
The primary advantage I can see for KCC over Jutoh - at least where Kindle comics are concerned (and that's the focus of this forum) - is in the creation of Panel View pop-ups for guided navigation. KCC can auto-detect panels based on the borders surrounding the panel art, and seems to do a pretty good job of it. You can change these manually at any time for more complex layouts, or to customize the viewing experience, just by dragging the corners or edges of a panel overlay.

Aside from that Jutoh has many more features for layout and styling of content. The ease of use is similar.

One other difference that should be mentioned, however, is that KCC only allows the "comic" book-type to be chosen. You cannot make children's books with it (or ebooks with the "children" book-type, at any rate).

I am personally very disappointed in the direction Amazon is moving away from live text in graphic-heavy content. This makes Kindle comics little more than PDF's, and negates most of the advantages of ebooks. Why is live text disabled in comics and children's books, even though it works in the same ebook when the book-type value is deleted? This is why I will continue to hand-code my illustrated content, and sell it simply as an illustrated book.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 8:58:56 PM PDT
"However, if you have a LOT of images (I'm not sure how many now), KG will often change their dimensions and compress them more."

This is not actually true. Kindlegen will *never* change the actual dimensions of your images, and will only compress them up to 40% of the image quality, beyond which the conversion will abort. The total number of images in your publication has no effect on the amount of compression, but files over 50Mb total file size will be rejected upon upload to KDP.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 9:56:54 PM PDT
Charles, my impression about this is probably dependent on my particular workflow. If you were starting from scratch, I don't know which would be easier. But as I come from POD publishing, I'm starting with an InDesign file created for print. Since it was for an illustrated children's book, the type was already oversize, so it was suitable for a small screen. All I had to do was generate a PDF file, convert to sRGB, and import it into Comic Creator. In fact, the first time I did it, I didn't realize the program accepted multi-page PDFs, so I took the extra step of exporting to individual files. So, I wasted part of that initial 20 minutes on an unnecessary step!

After that, I just exported to Mobi. That was it. Working through KindleGen, the Comic Creator converted all my vector-and-image PDF pages to JPEGs at 300 ppi with a file size limit of 800 KB each. What surprised me was that the resulting ebook contained both Mobi8 and Mobi7 files, so it worked even on Kindles that don't support KF8.

The next couple of days were spent largely in modifying my files in InDesign to make them more ebook-like, and also testing on various Kindles to perfect the results. (The biggest problem was the Paperwhite, which insisted on cropping out white edges on each page individually and enlarging the rest. And then Kindle for iPad would not respect the Comic Creator's double-page spreads, so I abandoned those.) I also figured out how to scale down my PDF page size to produce a more compact Mobi file.

The point is, anyone can create a PDF from almost any word processor or other authoring program, and then just import it and save it right back out again. Aside from a few choices at setup, there's no configuration at all. Again, I think Jutoh's great, and no doubt the best tool for a dedicated ebook professional like yourself. Obviously, it's going to give you a lot more control and versatility. But I don't see how you can knock this new entry on ease of use.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 10:02:19 PM PDT
Kindlegen will certainly reduce the pixel dimensions of a picture if needed to bring it under limits. First it tries heavier compression, down to the ridiculous level of around 5%. If that's not enough, it reduces the dimensions. That's easy to see if you use KindleUnpack.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 10:52:31 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 11:00:46 PM PDT
Charles says:
"Kindlegen will *never* change the actual dimensions of your images, and will only compress them up to 40% of the image quality, beyond which the conversion will abort."

What you say may be true of fixed format books Scot, which I haven't run many tests on, but for reflowable books, it will sometimes actually change the image dimensions to something less than 1200px on a side if you have a lot of them. It will also bring them down to about half of that 127KB size. Since we're discussing fixed format here, I probably shouldn't have mentioned it.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 16, 2013 10:56:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 16, 2013 11:00:55 PM PDT
Charles says:
Well I don't think you can import PDF files into Jutoh, so KCC may well be advantageous for people trying to convert PDF files.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 5:42:06 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2013 5:42:20 PM PDT
Charles says:
"This is why I will continue to hand-code my illustrated content, and sell it simply as an illustrated book."

Why not just use Jutoh and output the files as HTML. Then you could make whatever little changes you wanted to the OPF or any other file before bringing it into KindleGen. I can hardly see the point in hand coding everything when all you seem to want to do is delete the book type from the OPF. Or for that matter, use KCC and use mobi_unpack (or whatever they're calling it now) and to do the same thing.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 5:57:47 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2013 6:00:40 PM PDT
Well, for starters, I didn't say deleting the booktype is all I want to do. I make extensive use of magnification regions, not only for text zoom, but to switch one image for another, to move content from one position to another when double-tapped, and to auto-translate text from one language to another by inserting the secondary language in the magTarget region (the "magnified" region does not actually have to be zoomed, but can hold alternate text that is the same size as the default text). You can, for example, create a dual-language edition of a book in this way. You can also use this method to open doors or change facial expressions on characters in children's illustrated books. All this can be done using KF8 fixed layout code. But you can't even begin to do this with KCC or Jutoh. Check out my Advanced Template (www.authoradventures.blogspot.com/p/templates) and the 12-part tutorial on my blog, which is the first part of my upcoming ebook on the subject.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 6:24:39 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2013 6:38:49 PM PDT
Charles says:
Yeah, I do that kind of thing too, but I use the Image Slicer in PhotoImpact to break images into pieces and then bring them into Jutoh where I reasemble them. Each piece will then be a panel. I can easily hide MOST of a text panel behind one of the others and have it pop into view when someone clicks on it.

Also, I just discovered that Jutoh gives you a choice of Comic, Children's, or None for the book type, so yes, it will allow for live text without leaving the program. I just tested it and it works fine. You can highlight text to copy it or make notes etc. just like a reflowable book can if you choose None. Thanks for the tip.

I also noticed several months ago that if you make a reflowable book and give it the Comic book type, you can keep any photos in it up to 800MB in size just like in a comic book, but of course if there are too many, there will be consequences.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 6:38:37 PM PDT
Oh, wow, that's interesting about the reflowable with comic booktype. Does this have any effect on the live text functionality as it does in fixed layout? Do bookmarks and dictionaries still work?

Bear in mind with using the various booktypes (or none) that these each have a broad range of effects on the functionality of the publication. For example, currently two-page spreads only work with the comic booktype, and only under certain circumstances. The only exception is the Paperwhite (where all spreads are two-page regardless of the Spine property value), and the HD8.9 with no booktype added, where page spreads also work (although not with the children's booktype). Bookmarks also only work on the Fire line when no booktype is chosen, which is ridiculous. Why would you not want bookmarks to work in a graphic novel? Just inexcusable.

I have a chart on my blog that I keep updated that shows all the different functionality changes across seven Kindle devices and apps when the various booktypes are entered (search for Kindle Fixed Layout Functionality, or check the Top Posts section). The discrepancies are utterly boggling.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 6:45:08 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2013 6:45:25 PM PDT
Charles says:
I've never noticed any difference between a reflowable book with the comic type and one without except for being able to keep images larger in file size. The second to last version of Previewer would make the images blacked out in Fire mode if you used Comic, but it wasn't like that on an actual Fire. I haven't tested this latest version of Previewer yet to see if that still happens.

Yes, I've been to your blog several times Scot. Very well done mate. You and Liz Castro have both given me a lot of ideas the past year or so.

~~~
http://ebookpioneers.com

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 17, 2013 6:51:19 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 17, 2013 6:52:33 PM PDT
Cool. I'll have to play around with that. The book I'm working on right now is the first reflowable ebook I've actually done in years. I've been all focused on fixed layouts for the last few years, so it's almost like a new experience! I'll test out the comic value just to see what the variables are. I have a few images I'll like to embed at a higher file size, so it might come in handy!

I don't actually ever use Previewer either, since I have all of the Kindles there are. I just load them onto the actual device for testing.

Posted on Apr 26, 2013 1:06:30 PM PDT
Suzie says:
Is there any way to add touch sound images in KCC or Jutoh?

Posted on Apr 26, 2013 1:08:11 PM PDT
Suzie says:
The Elephant's Song
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Discussion in:  Kindle Publishing forum
Participants:  42
Total posts:  166
Initial post:  Apr 11, 2013
Latest post:  Nov 1, 2014

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