Important: This page contains detailed information about our services and our prices. It is important for you to read the whole page, as it should answer all of your questions about what we do and how much our services cost.
Authors and publishers are typically too busy writing and publishing books to become proficient in eBook creation and optimization. With so many formats and devices available, knowing what to do and how to do it becomes just that much harder. At eBook Architects, we specialize in handling the eBook creation and design process for you, so that you can focus on what you do best.
After designing eBooks for many years, one thing we have learned is that there is little or no consistency between the files we get from clients. Some publishers use InDesign, some use Quark, and some use other programs. Authors typically use a word processing program like Microsoft Word, Apple Pages, or Corel WordPerfect. The variation in file types and quality, even from one publisher or author, can be extensive.
In addition to that, the complexity of a book can have a substantial impact on the difficulty of converting it into foundational XHTML and designing it in the eBook formats. Fiction books usually take much less time than non-fiction, but some fiction books are more complex due to formatting irregularities or images.
Our content conversion and eBook design processes take all of these issues into account. We accept Word and PDF files since those are the most common source files our clients have available, and we have tiered pricing for non-fiction titles that can adapt to the added time and effort that complex books require. We also include the Mobipocket/Kindle and ePub formats in our base prices because they are the eBook formats used in most of the eBook devices and software applications on the market.
Before we talk about rates, it is important that you understand what you receive when you choose eBook Architects as your eBook conversion and design partner.
Quality: We are not a typical eBook conversion company. We are known throughout the publishing industry as one of the most proficient eBook design companies available. We specialize in complex eBook projects, and we regularly consult with companies that have had issues with files converted at the big overseas conversion houses. Joshua literally wrote the book on the Kindle format, and he regularly speaks at conferences and on webinars, teaching authors and publishers about Kindle, ePub, and other eBook formats and topics. All of our eBooks exceed the highest standards in the industry for quality and validity. Our ePub files are tested with ePubCheck, ePubPreflight, and other validation tools to ensure that they are accepted by every retailer. Our Kindle files are not just converted ePub files; we build them from the ground up, with emphasis on the unique design requirements and limitations of the Mobipocket/Kindle format.
Personal Service and Integrity: We pride ourselves in being available and responsive to the needs and concerns of our clients. Joshua is happy to talk with you on the phone any time (call 512-939-3466), and we respond to e-mails personally. If your book has complexities or you have concerns about how it will look in the different eBook formats, we are happy to help you and take your concerns to heart. Our Texas warmth and our personal integrity are essential company assets we work hard to protect.
Design Excellence: Our eBooks are not just flat text versions of your book. We ensure that your eBooks are easy to read and fully functional on all the major eBook platforms. Every eBook we create includes:
Warranty: We warrant our eBook conversion work 100% for life. If you find an error we introduced into your eBook, even many years after it is completed, we will happily and quickly fix it at no cost to you. We are even happy to make minor editorial changes in your eBooks if you find them after publication. (Find out more)
Formats: Every standard eBook project we work on includes the two most popular eBook formats, Kindle/Mobipocket and ePub. We do not use automated conversion software like calibre to do our conversions; we build our eBooks from scratch, focusing on quality and design integrity all along the way. We also specialize in complex content, fixed layout eBooks and childrens's eBooks, and enhanced eBooks.
Standard novels and novellas are all charged in a flat-fee system based on the size of the book, as long as the book does not have any formatting complexities.
|fewer than 17,500 words||$125|
|fewer than 400 pages||$200|
|greater than 400 pages||quote required|
To determine whether a title falls into the lowest tier, we use the standard word counts set by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America for their Nebula Awards: A novelette or short story is defined as any title with fewer than 17,500 words.
Images: Some novels have images in front of each chapter, or they include maps or other graphics at the beginning or end. In an effort to make our rates simple, we will include up to 10 images in your eBook conversion at no additional cost. Titles with 11-30 images will be charged an additional $30 fee. Titles with more than 30 images will require a quote for the conversion and may be charged at a different rate or scale altogether. Cover images are not included in these counts (they are always included in our eBook files).
Scanning print books: We can scan hard copy books and create digital files from the scanned text. See our section on Scanning and OCR below for more details.
Exceptions: As with most things in life, there are bound to be exceptions to these prices. If your novel has complexities like poetry, screenplays, etc. that make the eBook conversion process more difficult, we reserve the right to charge a higher rate than what is quoted above or even to switch to a per-page rate as described for non-fiction below. However, that is very unlikely to be an issue for the vast majority of novels.
Non-fiction titles are charged at either a per-page or hourly rate. As always, the Kindle and ePub formats are included for every title. We judge the complexity of a title on the time it will take to develop the eBook files. This is affected by a variety of factors, such as source file type, images, footnotes, lists, sidebars, pull quotes, indexes, glossaries, foreign languages, special symbols, math, multiple columns, complex page design, script/screenplay formatting, poetry, tables, and other formatting. Pricing is generally between $1 and $4 per page, or projects may be charged at a rate of $100 per hour. To receive an official quote on your project, please submit the files on our Quotes page so that we can assess its complexity.
Please remember that all of our files are certified with the QED seal. This certification sometimes requires that we make changes to the contents of an eBook file, such as adjusting tables to display better on small screens, removing worksheets and replacing them with a link to worksheet content on your website, and re-creating graphs and charts to be more readable, especially with small text. This work is all taken into consideration when developing the quote on your project, and we will give you information in the quoting stage about what we are planning to do, as well as what we will need you to do in order to make your files comply with the QED standard. If you have any questions about this, please let us know.
Many authors and publishers are looking for the ability to convert their back lists or reverted titles into eBooks. If you have a print book but no digital file, the easiest way to handle the conversion is to scan the print book and use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to convert the scanned page images into editable text. This scanning process normally involves cutting the binding off of the print book, but if the book is rare we can scan it without cutting the binding. Our OCR quality currently follows the industry standard of 99.97% accuracy, and we are constantly looking for ways to make that quality even better.
Many older titles like this have errors that need to be fixed or you may have new content to add to the updated book. Because this is such a common request, we split the development of all scanned books into two separate projects: the scanning/OCR and the eBook development. After we scan and OCR your book, we will create a Word document for you based on our XML code so that you can take your time proofing and making updates to the book.
Scanning: The cost for scanning a print book is $0.15 per page. We typically cut the binding off the print book, and scanned books will not be returned unless requested. If the print book you need digitized is rare, we can also scan the book without cutting the binding for an additional fee. You are welcome to have another company do the scanning and send us the scanned book file for OCR and processing (in PDF or TIFF format).
OCR: The cost for OCR, processing, and creating a Word document from the scanned book is $0.75 per page for fiction and $1.15 per page for non-fiction.
So, the cost of a Scanning/OCR project will be:
|Fiction||$0.15||$0.75||$0.90 per page|
|Non-Fiction||$0.15||$1.15||$1.30 per page|
Please note that if you send us a PDF or Word file that is the result of an OCR process performed by another company it could be charged in this same way. Most companies offering scanning and OCR conversions for PDFs do not combine paragraphs properly in their outputs, making common eBook conversion processes useless. Talk to us before sending your book to another company.
The fees for this scanning and OCR process are separate from, and in addition to, the eBook development fees for the title. We typically only charge the minimum flat fees of $200 (novels) or $250-$400 (everything else) for the development of the eBooks when you come back to us with the Word doc we created for you, but we do reserve the right to charge per-page fees for this process when the need arises. For an exact quote on the total cost of your project, including the scanning, OCR, and eBook development, please contact us.
While most eBook retailers do not require that you provide them with a sample file, sometimes you might want to make the sample larger than the default 10% the retailers generate. We can create Kindle and ePub sample files of your eBook with whatever pieces you want included. The cost for this is $40, and it can be done either at the same time as your eBook project or later.
Sometimes it also makes sense to sell each chapter of your book as its own eBook file. This is especially helpful for non-fiction titles with chapters written by different authors, or for large reports with chapters on topics that might be more appealing to some readers than the whole book. When breaking up a book like this, we charge $30 for each new mini-eBook. That includes pulling the chapter out, inserting the correct front and back matter, and creating the ePub and Kindle versions.
We'll need some files and instructions for each new mini-eBook, including:
These samples and chapter breakdowns are only offered on eBooks we have created.
Children’s books with images and text overlaid can sometimes require a substantial amount of re-designing to make them fit into the formats used on the different eBook devices. Please see our Fixed Layout eBooks page for details about how these eBooks work on the different devices and what options are available.
Many non-fiction books include subject indexes or other types of indexes at the back of the book. Most eBook conversion houses and will ignore these indexes or just insert them into the eBook without making the page numbers into active links. The misconception many authors and publishers have is that since eBooks are searchable you do not need an actual navigable index. However, subject indexes are much more than just nicely formatted search results. They are informative lists of detailed data found in the book, with topics and subtopics, related areas of interest, and other helpful information. (For an extensive explanation of the value of indexes in eBooks, see our Subject Index services page and listen to our eBook Ninjas podcast on the topic.)
Linking the page numbers in any standard subject/person/etc. index is included in the cost of your conversion. However, if you have other sections of the book that you would like to link, such as large indexes that point to other locations of your book, please see our Enhanced eBooks page for more information on how we can link those sections in your eBook file.
Tables are one of the main problem areas in eBook design. Some eBook formats and devices do not have very good support for HTML-based table layouts (especially the Kindle). Even with the industry-standard ePub format, the support for beautifully-designed tables in the different software applications and devices is inconsistent at best. With this lack of consistent formatting, we typically insert all tables into our clients' eBooks as images. (These images are created by taking a screenshot of the table in the source file.) This design process ensures that your tables will be displayed as you designed them regardless of the format or device.
However, we can also insert your tables in other ways, depending on how they are formatted in the print book and what platforms you are targeting. Please see our Enhanced eBooks page for more information.
We offer a variety of options for adding features like video and audio, embedded PDFs, non-linear tables, and more. Please see our Enhanced eBooks page for descriptions, examples, and prices of these services.
Sometimes we are asked about converting files from other source formats like InDesign, Quark, and XML. Because of our established conversion processes it is usually easiest to convert from PDF or Word, but we can sometimes make exceptions to this in special circumstances. These projects have to be quoted on a case-by-case basis, so please contact us to find out more.
Please note that we do not usually take on jobs that involve cleaning up ePub files that someone else has started working on, or ePubs that were converted using calibre or other software conversion tools. If we do start from an ePub file, the project will be treated the same as any other project because cleaning up the HTML, CSS, and other formatting issues that typically come in those files is not actually less work than starting from the PDF.
Every eBook conversion we do includes the Mobipocket/Kindle and ePub formats. Sometimes distributors require that your PDF files contain a linked Table of Contents, a bookmarks content list, and an embedded cover image. We can add these extra features for $40 or $80, depending on the complexity and size of the table of contents to be linked.
Please note, we do not create eBooks in the eReader and .LIT formats. These formats are no longer being sold by the major eBook retailers, so the time and cost investment does not pay back for our clients. If you need these formats for some reason, please contact us directly to get a quote.
Also, we no longer create Smashwords Word documents. The Smashwords Meatgrinder system uses automation processes to create ePub and Kindle files. In our opinion, creating valid and beautiful eBook files using automation processes (whether using Smashwords, calibre, or other systems) commonly results in quality issues. We are happy to create a standard Word document based on the HTML code we use in our eBooks (priced at $40/$80), but we do not offer any support or guarantee any uploading capabilities into the Smashwords system.
We offer lifetime discounts to publishers and authors who use our services for 5 or more books. Please contact us to discuss these rates.
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Don't wait! Turnaround times are currently about 4-6 weeks, so get the process started now.
Please note, we reserve the right to turn down any project that does not fit our content standards.
We accept checks (business or personal), cashier's checks, money orders, PayPal and Google Wallet payments. All payments must be made in U.S. dollars; payments made in other currencies will be charged a US$40 processing fee. We require a 50% non-refundable deposit on most projects, with the remainder due upon your approval of the final files. If you have any questions about this policy, please contact us.
In addition to eBook design services, we offer eBook consultations and process development, and, through close partnerships, a variety of other services related to print and eBook creation, including subject index creation, cover image design, interior layout, and PR/marketing. Please click through to see what those services cost and how they might fill your eBook and print book needs.
Also, we are always open to new opportunities. Please contact us if you have an idea that just needs to be fleshed out, or if you have a need that does not fit into the models listed above.