Self Publishing using Calibre

Recently there has been a lot of news about authors self publishing or *independently publishing*. Including me. The vast majority of my work is now independently published, and more recently Love Lane has become an independent publisher in it's own right.

I deal with all the file creation. I could farm it out, but I am really nervous about someone else in fiddling... rofl... so, yeah, my normally non-existent OCD kicks in.

Following a chat yesterday with a couple authors, and a few emails I have received I thought today's post could be about Calibre.

Calibre is this awesome piece of FREE software that I use to create my Mobi, epub and pdf files. You can find it here:

Calibre is a powerful tool which you can use to sort out your ebooks and I know there are a few of my readers who use it to tag and group books on their Kindles. I don't, I just use it for file creation and management.

There are a few steps to getting the word file you need to use in Calibre.

Note - this is the way I use it, that doesn't mean it is the most effective way, or even the correct way, it's just the way it works for me.

Important things about the word file:
  • Use H1 code for chapter headings, and other headings such as *about RJ* or *Copyright* (This feeds the table of contents that Calibre creates for you)
  • Be as simple as possible with fonts and sizes (I use Book Antiqua 12 for my main text)
  • Save it as a filtered HTML file - Web Page, Filtered (htm, html)
Using Calibre is trial and error and you need to spend some time playing, and also checking your resulting files in a kindle app, and an epub app, and making sure the PDF looks ok... There are plenty of places to get support in how to use the software including the help screens inside Calibre.


  1. Hi RJ, as a reader I discovered Calibre when I wanted convert files to mobi. I am not very tech savvy and I found Calibre quite easy to use. I also discovered I can use Calibre to convert fanfic too.

  2. Hi RJ,
    I found Calibre great for conversion when I first started reading ebooks (lrf), but now I use Jutoh (also free) because I can fiddle more (I like to put series books together into one file). I'm afraid a lot of HTML coding scares me, and I couldn't quite get things right with Calibre. But I've also talked to people who went from Jutoh to Calibre, so I guess it's a matter of preference.

  3. Hi RJ, Ardent Reader & Alison
    I am very un-tech savvy so...
    I enjoy my Kindle paperwhite BUT have to create collections for each series ie Texas Sapphire Cay Bodyguards etc. Would Calibre help me with this & do I install it on PC first then download eBooks to Kindle? Sorry peeps Dinosaur this end. ☹