Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Kindle Is The Perfect Editing Tool


The book sampling facility is a powerful incentive to get a Kindle. Instead of relying on reviews, if they happen, you can download the first few chapters of most new books and see for yourself if it's the kind of writing you're going to enjoy. I used to rely on my local library for my browsing and reading piles, and still do, but now have more new irresistible new books on my 'shelves' than ever before.

For writers and editors there's an extra incentive to get Kindled-up, and that's the editing tool. Be it a book, a dissertation, a company report, you can email your own work to your kindle with the special email you're given with your purchase. Or you can transfer it direct from your computer.  Your MS magically transforms into 'book'. A nice chunk of that all-important distance is added that doesn't happen when you read to edit from the screen, or even from paper. You can highlight text and add in notes as you read. When you're ready to go back to your next computer edit you can bring your edits up as a list. This is best used for fine edits, i.e. when you think (ha!) you've got a finished product.

If you regularly write any kind of document and you're thinking of buying a Kindle (nobody  I know, writer or otherwise, has yet to be less than delighted with theirs), consider the Kindle with the push-button keyboard rather than the touch-screen one, which I gather isn't so nifty when it comes to note-taking. I don't know how the Kindle Fire, only available in the US at the moment, performs.

To transfer a MS to Kindle via your computer, email it to yourself via your special kindle email.

Or you can do it via the free ebook management system Calibre.

Save your file as a PDF - PDF works perfectly for me but some report conversion difficulties. You may instead want to convert your MS to RTF (rich text format).

Import it into Calibre via the "Add Books To Calibre Library" Red book icon top L.

Plug your Kindle into your computer with the charger lead which adapts for this purpose.

Highlight the title in Calibre.

Click the brown "convert book" icon in the top toolbar, next door but one to the red icon.

Click the blue "MOBI Output" icon bottom left of screen.

When the file has transferred, click the Blue "Send To Device" icon in the centre of the top toolbar.

Voila.

To edit on your kindle click on that big, square button at any point in the text and start writing, a window will open up at the bottom of your Kindle screen. Click "save" in this window and continue reading until your next edit.

To view your notes click MENU, then "View Notes And Marks".

Bye bye, thanks for visiting, come again soon.