With the announcement on January 27, 2010, of Apple’s iPad, and its support
for the EPUB format, the world of electronic books, or ebooks for short,
took a quantum leap into the future. According to IDPF (International Digital
Publishing Forum), ebook sales in the U.S. in January and February of 2010
were $60.8 million, $5 million more than the entire fourth quarter of 2009 ($55
million). The iPad is not responsible for all of the excitement, but it sure isn’t
hurting things.
This book is for people who want to create their own EPUBs, and publish them
for the iPad in particular, but also on other ereaders, like the Barnes and Noble
Nook, Sony Reader, and desktop ereaders like Ibis and Stanza.
In this chapter we’ll talk about:
X The differences and similarities among print books, ebooks and websites
X The EPUB format itself
X The size and structure of a page on the iPad
X Who this book was written for and where you can find updates, example
code, and extras
Almost overnight, EPUB has become the favored standard for displaying digital text on ereaders. The EPUB specification is a powerful method for creating gorgeous ebooks for EPUB-capable readers such as the iPad, Nook, and Kindle. Alas, it is far from perfect, with frustrating limitations, sketchy documentation, and incomplete creation tools. This extensively researched guide to creating EPUB files by best-selling author Elizabeth Castro shows you how to prepare EPUB files, make the files look great on the screen, work around EPUB weaknesses, and fix common errors. In this essential book, Liz shares her hard-earned experience for how to:

Create EPUB files from existing Microsoft Word or Adobe InDesign files, or from scratch.
Tweak EPUB files to take full advantage of the power of EPUB in each respective ereader.
Control spacing, indents, and margins.
Insert images and sidebars and wrap text around them.
Create links to external sources and cross-references to internal ones.