Microsoft Word Add-In From Kindle: New Self-Publishing Software

Amazon is offering an Add-In for Microsoft Word (beginning with Word 2010).  From Kindle Direct Publishing, the Add-In allows you to do the following:

  • Format your manuscript by specifying styles like Chapter Title, Chapter Subtitle and others.
  • Save time by using pre-formatted sample pages like book title, copyright, dedication to complete your book.
  • Preview your book any time as it would look to customers reading on Tablets, Phones and Kindle E-readers before publishing.
  • Work in Microsoft Word and publish your .doc/.docx manuscript as an eBook or paperback with Kindle Direct Publishing.

Beta Testing for Both KDP Word Add-In and Kindle Create

It’s new, and it’s offered in beta, which means some indie publishers may nix using it right off the bat. 

Why?  Beta can be scary.  That’s because “beta” by definition means not all the kinks are ironed out of the product. 

However, if you are beta-brave, then you might like Kindle Direct Publishing’s Microsoft Word Add-In.

Kindle Create Still Available

This does not replace KDP’s original Kindle Create.  You’re free to choose between them.  In fact, Amazon explains that they are separate tools, and that files cannot be moved between them.  
The initial Kindle Create has been available for several months.   According to Amazon, Kindle Create allows you to do the following:

  • Quickly apply a book theme to match your story.
  • Detect and style chapter titles automatically.
  • Preview your book any time as it would look to customers reading on Tablets, Phones and Kindle E-readers before publishing.
  • Works with .doc and .docx files exported from applications like Microsoft Word, Google Docs, Apple Pages, Scrivener and others.

What They Offer the Writer - Publisher

Amazon explains that both these beta tools offer the writer-publisher a way to compile content into an e-book or paperback format. 

  • Each tool provides the writer – publisher with an opportunity to apply “themes” to your content (KDP themes listed are Classic, Modern, Amour and Cosmos).   
  • Both allow the writer “preview functionality” for phones, tablets, and e-readers. 
  • Either version enables the writer to create a table of contents using chapter titles. 

Kindle for Self-Published E-books

For many folk, getting your e-book published for Kindle e-readers and sold via the e-book market on Amazon.com is enough.  

That’s fine.  It may not be the best option for maximizing your exposure and sales, but focusing on the Amazon marketplace isn’t a bad thing. 

Which means Amazon offering a new compilation tool provided within Microsoft’s popular word processing software Word seems like a great tool for lots of writers.

I think I’ll try it out.  It’s on my task list, anyway.

Word vs. Scrivener

However, my real interest here is how this enhances Word for self-publishing.  It’s making it more comparable to Scrivener.  

Maybe the real news here isn’t the alternative in KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) compilation tools.

The big deal here may be the new power of Microsoft Word to compile content for publication.  For some writers, will this be enough of a temptation to return to Word after they’ve been using Scrivener?