First of all, my books are already formatted as I write. I write them one chapter at a time and then put each chapter in a master file. I add the table of contents and hyperlinks to all my chapters. I also have everything formatted for submission to Smashwords, so there will be a lot of steps that you may need to do that I've already done.
This is the process for altering an individual file to all the sites I publish to. Perhaps I'll go through the details of settings for each site one of these times.
This whole process took me about 6 hours tonight, taking into account making dinner for the kids and running one to play rehearsal.
0. Beginning format
I have a chapter 0 that I use as a template. I've formatted it and set the formatting as the normal style that all my files use. When I go to write a new chapter, I change "Chapter 0" to "Chapter 1" and save it as that chapter name. I have a master book file that I insert each chapter into when I'm done with them. This is also based on the new normal formatting style.
I keep things as simple as possible with fonts and formatting so that the book looks uniform throughout all the stores. This helps to avoid issues.
0a. I set the font as Times New Roman 12pt. This is a personal preference. Use what you like.
0b. Set your paragraph style. It's on your home tab, paragraph style. It's also on the Page layout tab. There's a lot of info here. I set alignment left, outline level body text. Left and right indentation 0, First line .33, though I'd recommend .3 or .5. The emo bunnies liked .33 best, so I went with it. I set before and after spacing at 0. There's also the option of not using indents. You can do block style. If you do, then adjust it so that it gives you a space between paragraphs. While writing, I set line spacing at 1.5. Most people will use 2.
0c. While writing, NEVER use the tab button. Did I emphasize that enough? Use first line indent. Tabs mess up formatting.
0d. I set my margins at 1". That really has no effect on formatting the book, it's just a preference.
0e. Use Heading style 2 for each chapter. Edit the heading style. Format it, center it, increase the size of the font. Remove indentations for the heading style. I increase the size to 16 for chapters and I underline them. It's a personal style preference.
Note: I highly recommend using heading styles. It makes all the difference in the world with navigation and with creating tables of contents in Amazon and Createspace.
On the master book file:
0f. Use Heading style 1 for the title. Format it, center it, increase the size of the font. Edit the
0g. Add your copyright information. This is a sample of what it could look like. I add any artwork copyright info for the cover or inside illustrations here too.
Published by John H. Carroll at Smashwords
Copyright 2011, 2015 John H. Carroll
Cover Copyright 2011 John H. Carroll
Cover photography by Tracy Carroll
I keep it simple, but that's personal choice. I recommend registering your copyright as well.
0h. Optional: add a dedication.
1a. Ensure it says "Published by John H. Carroll at Smashwords". (This will be different for other people, in case you were wondering.)
1b. Change spacing to single spacing.
1c. Add author bio.
1d. Link author notes to table of contents.
1e. Check all links.
1f. Remove hidden bookmarks.
1g. Publish to Smashwords.
(Note - I distribute to B&N and other stores through Smashwords, so I won't be adding the process for those stores.)
Copy Amazon version of word document file to Amazon folder.
Copy Amazon version of word document file to Createspace folder. (If applicable)
2a. Remove "Published by John H. Carroll at Smashwords".
2b. Add page breaks before each chapter.
2c. Remove all bookmarks except the TOC bookmark if you make your chapter headings click back to the Table of Contents.
2d. Delete your Smashwords table of contents. Go to the references tab and select table of contents. Use this to create your table of contents. It's where heading style comes in handy. I have a tutorial on how to do that here: http://ryallon.blogspot.com/2013/02/how-to-add-table-of-contents-for-amazon.html
2e. Replace author bio with Amazon author bio.
2f. Publish to Amazon.
Copy the original word document to Kobo folder.
3a. Save file.
3b. Save as 'web page, filtered'. (html)
3c Use Calibre to convert html to epub.
3cc. (wait for Calibre to update *sigh*)
3d. Open file to ensure quality.
3e. Publish to Kobo.
(Note - If you do wish to publish to B&N directly, this process will work for that too. You can even use the exact same file if you like.)
This is a whole lot more complicated. *sigh*
4a. In the reference tab, click "Table of Contents" and then Remove Table of Contents
4b. ctrl-a (select everything).
4c. ctrl-shift-F9 to remove all hyperlinks.
Delete ALL bookmarks.
4d. change paragraph formatting to 'justify'.
4e. Open the 'page layout' - 'page setup' box
4f. Margins (for a 100k word novel) top: .75, bottom: .75, inside: .75, outside: .50. Gutter: .25 (left)
4g. Set 'multiple pages' to 'mirror margins'.
4h. On the paper tab, set size to 6 x 9. *This will be different if you're publishing your book under a different size.
4i. On the layout tab, select 'different first page' (so you don't number the first page) and set header and footer to .35.
4j. Insert page numbers. First page different so the title page isn't numbered. While in footer, go to page layout and remove first line indent. This will not effect the main text.
4k. Center title page.
4l. Change font style and size of title to whatever the theme is. (In the case of my Ryallon books, this would be Fairydustb, size 36 for the title)
4m. Center each chapter, change font style and size 26. Make this Heading style 2 for this document. That way you can have word Create the Table of Contents for you.
4n. Make the first letter of each chapter theme font style and size 16. Possibly add a space between the quotation mark and the letter if needed for the style. Make certain quotation marks are the same size as the letter.
4o. Embed the font. file/options/save/embed font/only characters in document/do not embed common fonts.
4p. Go through and search for section breaks *** with ctrl-f. Center them all. ctrl-e.
4q. Make certain the prologue, epilogue and author notes are all centered and font style themes are applied.
4r. Make certain the end ### is centered.
4s. Make certain there are no blank pages.
This may or may not help you, but perhaps it will give some a little insight as to the work that goes into submitting files to the different sites for publishing.
All my best,
John H. Carroll