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Amazon releases tool for cartoonists to create Kindle books

Kindle Comic Creator

Amazon has stepped in to the fray of releasing tools to help creators create digital versions of their comics for resale in different outlets. Apple has their iBooks Author, Comixology has Comixology Submit and now Amazon has released Kindle Comic Creator. It’s a free tool to help turn comics, graphic novels and manga into Kindle books to be sold through Amazon.

From their announcement:

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.

Good E Reader notes that using the free tool subjects the creator to the Amazon pricing terms.

Or not. As with other Kindle books, the author sets the list price and then can choose from two royalty schemes: 35% of the list price on every book sold or 70% of the actual sale price of the book in certain territories (including the U.S.) The catch with the 70% royalty is that Amazon can reduce the selling price to match a competitor?s price for an e-book or print book, or to match their own price for a print book. It?s interesting that Amazon recognizes the general reluctance to pay more for digital than for print. Also note that Amazon takes out the cost of ?delivery? before calculating the royalty; that seems to be about six cents per e-book. There are some other caveats as well, and naturally, it?s a good idea to read the terms and conditions carefully before proceeding.

Has anyone downloaded and worked with it yet? If so, what’s your impressions?

Community Comments

#1 Paul Tubb
April/24/2013
@ 10:11 am

I’ve not used it, nor heard of it till now…

would have come in useful, I created my Kindle Books Via trial and error…

#2 Tim Gibson
April/24/2013
@ 1:16 pm

The 6 cent delivery charge has been bandied about on a few blogs, but if you reverse engineer it (at 0.15c p/MB) that’s the ‘average’ because most novels are text files of less than 500kb.

You’re never going to be able to get that sort of low file size with a comic, which effectively restricts cartoonist to the 35% royalty tier, whether we are selling single issues or collected works.

Amazon is pushing modern HD readers, but charging creators old-fashioned delivery fees to supply content for them.

#3 Rich Diesslin
April/24/2013
@ 8:53 pm

I haven’t heard of this tool yet, but I’ll check it out. It’s not all that difficult to publish a collection of cartoons in Kindle using the basic book tools, but this is likely to help make it easier. In terms of pricing, I agree Tim, it’s a bit silly to charge for file size at all these days.

#4 Terry LaBan
April/25/2013
@ 7:51 am

I haven’t tried the Kindle tool or heard of it till now. I have tried iAuthor, for iBooks, and had some problems with it. Apple rejected the files a number of different times for what turned out to be really minor errors, but there were long waits to get responses on how to fix them.

#5 Bob Quick
April/25/2013
@ 9:51 am

I’m wondering if this could pertain to Comic strips as well.

#6 David Jones
April/25/2013
@ 2:34 pm

Cool. By the time I finish my first book, maybe any potential bugs will be addressed and that old world delivery change will be set to a maximum percentage so the authors can turn a profit!!! #CharmysArmy

#7 Dan Collins
April/26/2013
@ 8:27 am

Just got this last week and haven’t done anything with it yet. If it helps simplify creating mag targeted regions for comics it could be useful for some things. A no-brainer, universal epub creation tool is still a pipe dream and will be for some time. Stop waiting for it and learn to do it the right way if you want a book sometime this decade.

#8 Mick Horne
April/27/2013
@ 2:29 am

Hi Dan, what would you outline as the major hurdles in learning to do it the right way myself ?
And which major outlet would you use, or would you market it yourself ?

Cheers

Mick

#9 Mike Lester
April/27/2013
@ 10:30 am

I don’t get it. Why would a creative person want to create something not unique to themselves? This is photoshop and auto tunes but for comics. To the young aspiring cartoonists reading this here’s advice from an old guy:

Sometimes when everybody’s zigging, you should zag.

#10 Donald Rex Jr.
April/27/2013
@ 4:44 pm

I don’t get it? Why would someone use a pencil when goose quills are so readilly available, and delicious. yum.

#11 Dan Collins
May/5/2013
@ 7:17 am

Heres a review from a guy who knows Kindle e-books inside and out and has done some good testing with KC2. http://authoradventures.blogspot.com/2013/04/kindle-comic-creator-analysis.html

#12 Dan Collins
May/5/2013
@ 7:30 am

Mick, there are several online courses for learning how: I used Lynda.com. There are a few (good) books on this: check out Liz Castro’s books and websites. No matter how you do your e-book you will be doing all the marketing yourself and there is no best practice as yet for this. Even the syndicates ask me how I do it and I don’t have an answer for them either. Epub is an art form that is and has been in a constant state of change since it began. You check out everything you can find online, you follow other epub production folks on twitter. You don’t listen to old guys.
It is an art form that requires you know many different disciplines: InDesign, Dreamweaver, text editing programs, book design, typography, CSS, HTML, and Photoshop of course for images. It’s a lot but in the end you will be your own publisher and have no need of any outside entity to publish at will anything you wish and make money doing it. You can set up your own accounts with the big sellers or you can use an aggregator to distribute your ebook. It’s an exciting age for the cartoonist. Never before have we been able to publish so easily and with so much freedom. I personally can’t think of anything more unique to an artist.

#13 Dan Collins
May/5/2013
@ 7:34 am

You can keep up with what I’m doing on my new site and blog at http://www.fun-e-bookspublishing.com/index.html.

#14 Peter Stallard
July/14/2014
@ 7:24 pm

I purchased Jutoh 2 which according to my research is more versatile than the free Comic Creator and will simultaneously produce all the various files required for all ebook outlets.
I have not used it just yet although my cartoon book is finished and ready to go.
It is obviously a more complex program and requires more learning. I am studying the very comprehensive tutorial and in the next few days I hope to start working with it.
The creator of this program, Julian Smart in Edinburgh, Scotland is very receptive to questions and comments, He will get back to you very quickly to answer any e-mails in great detail, remembering that there is a time difference of course.
From what I have read Comic Creator has limitations when it comes to use on other devices besides Kindle and to fix those you need a background of HTML. Jutoh does all this HTML background work for you. It also allows extensive editing options that are not available in Comic Creator so in the long run I think it is worth paying for.

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