Thursday, February 19, 2015

Cracking the Lulu ebook Reject Problem

A faster way to clear up those cryptic Lulu ebook rejects.

Just a note in passing...

I was working away converting and uploading when I stumbled on a faster and surer way to get your book through that meatgrinder that Lulu uses to process it's ebooks.

This is when you submit an .epub file to them. (I long gave up on anything else. I test them locally and submit - much faster. Epubs are also faster on Smashwords, btw.)

All you get is a text file telling you where the problem is according to it's script. Unfortunately, these are less than useful in many cases. Some are really stupid (like naming your graphic wrong will show up as something like "'id' isn't a valid reference."

I used to export my files from LibreOffice with a plug-in called Writer2Epub. And that's a very nice tool, but I'd have to go back and fix the style sheet as it wasn't easy to read those files - space between paragraphs are what people are used to, and makes it easier to read. And on a smartphone, justified text will break up a book so it can't be read unless you turn your phone sideways.

Today, I ran across a reject which shouldn't have been a problem. I've been using Calibre's ebook editor as it has epubcheck built in. Yesterday, I found that "id" reject was caused by images when I ran something that passed Calibre through Sigil.

But I had this nice file all ready to go, but wouldn't fly on Lulu. In the past, I've shrugged it off and then ignored Lulu for it - I don't get all that many sales directly from Lulu, even though I get a higher royalty there than anywhere else, hands down.

This time, I had Calibre convert the epub from the original LibreOffice .odt file. I epubchecked that output file on the Calibre ebook editor and then with Sigil. Since Sigil passed it, I then uploaded it to Lulu and it now passed.


Yes, I have more tests to go - and a lot of rejected files from a past batch to run through this.

Thought to give you a heads up, through.

Luck to us all...

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