Pin It

The Most Popular Book Formats for Indie Publishers

Indie Book Formats Full WidthBetween books, ebooks and audiobooks there are so many different formatting options.

Indie Book Formats

Infographic – Book Formats

This infographic is designed to provide a quick overview of the most common formats. You may click here to open it full size in a new window or click here to see it in my Google Album.

Printed Books

A book’s format refers to the shape and dimensions of the physical book. Here are some of the more popular book sizes.

Printed books often have the following dimensions:

Trade Paperbacks
Often in the range of 5 ½ x 8 ½ to 6 x 9 inches. Most self-published books are in this category.

General Nonfiction
Nonfiction books tend to be 6 x 9 inches, sometimes a little larger.

Photography & Art
Size varies widely.

Manuals & Workbooks
Often in the range of 8 x 10 to 8 ½ x 11 inches.

Book Sizes

Ebooks

An ebook is a book in digital or electronic format. While many ebook formats have been introduced over the years, the clear leaders today are the Epub format, Mobi and KF8 formats used by Amazon & Kindle, and PDFs.

PDF

Portable Document Format was first created by Adobe Systems in 1993 as a standard format for document exchange. Still a very popular format that can be viewed on most platforms. Popular for non-fiction books.

EPUB2

A free and open standard for formatting ebooks used by most ebook stores except Amazon. Epub ebooks can be read on most ebook readers incl. Nook, Kobo Reader, Sony Reader, Apple iOS and Android devices.

EPUB3

This 3rd version of ePub format offers enhanced features: CSS features and multimedia display aspects; complex layouts; rich media; global typography; interactivity.

MOBI

The Mobipocket ebook format is the format most authors use to upload books to KDP for Amazon. Uses XHTML and based on the Open Ebook standard.

KF8

Kindle Format 8 enables rich formatting and design such as children’s picture books, comics & graphic novels, technical & engineering books and cookbooks. Introduced by Amazon in 2011.

More on ebook formats.

Audiobooks

An audiobook is a recording of a book being read aloud. Such recordings have been available in schools and libraries since the 1930s but the medium only began to attract book retailers in the 1980s. While it’s still possible to distribute audiobooks on traditional mediums such as records, cassette tapes, and CDs, these are quickly giving way to the popular and downloadable digital formats listed below.

The most important formats are the Audible AA format, since Audible is the biggest retailer of audiobooks, and MP3. Your readers, or ‘listeners’, can purchase audiobooks via several major retailers including Audible, iTunes, and Google Play Store.

AA

Audible’s own format that can be played in iTunes, Windows Media Player 11, and their apps for various devices. With this format you can easily return to the last playback position, select chapters, and change narration speed.

AAX

Audible’s enhanced format that includes support for images and links. Good for children’s books.

MP3

A format which compresses a recording into a very small file format, designed by the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG)

AAC

Advanced Audio Coding is the default audio format for YouTube and iOS devices.

WMA

Windows Media Audio format designed by Microsoft.

More on audiobook formats.

That’s a brief overview of book formats.

As indie authors we should remember there is not really any ‘best format’ for books. What matters is getting to know your readers and how they like to read. As an independent publisher you owe it to your fans to make your book available in the formats that they want to use.

Tweet: The Most Popular Book Formats for Indie Publishers [Infographic] via @GaryJMcLaren #indiepub
Twitter Takeaways

Click on any of the following to tweet…

The Most Popular Book Formats for Indie Publishers [Infographic]

Check out this Infographic of Book Formats for Indie Publishers

Words Are Sacred, They Deserve Respect

Words Are Sacred

“Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” ~ Tom Stoppard

Continue reading...

What is Important for Indie Authors in 2015?

GaryMcLaren2

It’s that season when people love to post resolutions and predictions for the year ahead. Along with others in the publishing industry I have been reviewing “where we’re at” and “where we’re heading” as an industry in 2015. When considering where we’re at it’s helpful to remember just how far self-publishing has come in the past decade. It’s just over 7 years since Amazon launched […]

Continue reading...

Quotations for Writers: The Unread Story

ReaderMakesItLive

“The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.” ~ Ursula K. Le Guin #writingquotes

Continue reading...

Amazon Unveils 8th Generation Fulfilment Center

Watching this video of Amazon’s 8th generation fulfillment center is a bit like watching something out of the “Jetsons”. Check out the robots running around moving shelves, robotic arms unpacking trucks, and organization systems that inventory entire shipments in just thirty minutes instead of hours!

Continue reading...

The World’s Greatest Storytellers

STORYTELLER_crop-760x428

Publishing house Raconteur Media has surveyed around 500 authors, journalists, editors, students, and media and marketing professionals, asking them who is the world’s greatest storyteller? The Infographic below shows some of the results. As Raconteur explains on their blog, “…we wanted to take a moment to celebrate storytelling as we know and love it – storytelling that comes […]

Continue reading...

Beautiful Scenery in Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown, New Zealand

I was fortunate to be in Queenstown, New Zealand a few weeks ago for a conference and took this snapshot one evening with my Samsung phone. This area of New Zealand has such beautiful scenery and it was nice to be back there. I worked around Queenstown and Wanaka in the late 80’s.

Continue reading...

The Indie Author’s Guide to Publishing Ebooks, 2nd Edition, is Now Available

I am very pleased to announce the release of “The Indie Author’s Guide to Publishing Ebooks, 2nd Edition“. It also reveals my new strategy, or recommended path, for creating ePub and Mobi formats as easily and painlessly as possible!The first edition was released in December 2011 and has helped many writers to self-publish their own […]

Continue reading...

Where I’m Blogging in 2013

In case you hadn’t realised I have been using this blog for major announcements and updates, usually several each year. Here are the web sites and blogs where I anticipate being more active throughout this year. Publish Your Own Ebooks – my blog for indie authors wanting to learn all about digital publishing and how […]

Continue reading...

I’ve Reorganized My Social Media Accounts

As 2013 gets under way I have been refocusing my efforts and objectives for this year and this affects my social media accounts. This year on Twitter, Google+ and Facebook I plan to engage on a (slightly) broader range of topics than ebook publishing.  If you follow me on these social media networks you can expect […]

Continue reading...