InDesign CS6 Essential Training
Illustration by John Hersey

Exporting EPUBs


InDesign CS6 Essential Training

with David Blatner

Video: Exporting EPUBs

The EPUB format is quickly becoming the file format for eBooks around the world. You can view EPUB files on iPads, NOOKs, and most other tablets, as well as on Desktop computers. Now, InDesign can export your document as an EPUB, although it might take a little bit of work to get it looking the way you want. Let's take a quick look at how this document has been constructed. On page one, we have an image, and the title. When I look at the next spread, I see the title page, and it's made up of several different text frames, and an image.
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  1. 1m 23s
    1. What is InDesign?
      1m 23s
  2. 2m 38s
    1. Welcome
      1m 0s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 38s
  3. 21m 19s
    1. Getting started
      3m 33s
    2. Adding or editing text
      3m 23s
    3. Adding or replacing graphics
      4m 31s
    4. Moving objects around
      4m 55s
    5. Printing and creating a PDF
      4m 57s
  4. 26m 6s
    1. Exploring the application window
      6m 25s
    2. Navigating and magnifying pages and objects
      6m 24s
    3. Setting rulers and measurements
      2m 35s
    4. Working with panels
      3m 58s
    5. Setting the view quality of artwork
      2m 31s
    6. Adjusting view and preview settings
      4m 13s
  5. 27m 52s
    1. Creating new documents
      7m 39s
    2. Saving and reverting documents
      4m 2s
    3. Saving for CS4 and CS5 with IDML
      2m 24s
    4. Setting the margin and column guides
      4m 29s
    5. Putting ruler guides on the page
      5m 7s
    6. Bleeding colors or images off the side of the page
      4m 11s
  6. 23m 37s
    1. Inserting, deleting, and moving pages
      4m 32s
    2. Changing page size
      4m 38s
    3. Creating and applying master pages
      5m 18s
    4. Overriding master page items
      2m 43s
    5. Adding page numbering
      2m 22s
    6. Changing page numbering with sections
      4m 4s
  7. 52m 48s
    1. Understanding text frames
      3m 38s
    2. Typing and editing text
      4m 48s
    3. Inserting special characters
      4m 1s
    4. Importing text
      3m 47s
    5. Threading text frames
      3m 12s
    6. Setting text frame columns
      4m 31s
    7. Setting text inset and vertical justification options
      3m 48s
    8. Allowing text frames to grow and shrink
      4m 5s
    9. Putting text on a path
      5m 51s
    10. Using the Story Editor
      5m 10s
    11. Checking spelling
      5m 12s
    12. Using Find/Change
      4m 45s
  8. 28m 19s
    1. Importing graphics
      8m 20s
    2. Using the Links panel
      7m 17s
    3. Editing graphics in their original app
      3m 10s
    4. Fitting graphics to the frame
      5m 1s
    5. Taking advantage of image transparency and clipping paths
      4m 31s
  9. 35m 49s
    1. Selecting objects
      5m 2s
    2. Applying basic strokes and fills
      5m 6s
    3. Colorizing images
      1m 59s
    4. Adjusting transparency
      4m 4s
    5. Adding drop shadows
      3m 33s
    6. Using other transparency effects
      5m 15s
    7. Copying and formatting with the Eyedropper tool
      5m 59s
    8. Finding and changing object formatting
      4m 51s
  10. 18m 34s
    1. Creating color swatches
      4m 33s
    2. Understanding the danger and power of unnamed colors
      5m 46s
    3. Creating gradient swatches
      3m 53s
    4. Applying gradients
      4m 22s
  11. 15m 27s
    1. Editing frame and path shapes
      5m 8s
    2. Adding rounded corners and other corner options
      4m 8s
    3. Making polygons and starbursts
      1m 59s
    4. Creating text outlines
      4m 12s
  12. 37m 56s
    1. Positioning objects with the Gap tool
      3m 54s
    2. Stacking objects
      2m 5s
    3. Creating and controlling layers
      5m 27s
    4. Managing objects in the Layers panel
      3m 33s
    5. Grouping and locking objects
      3m 10s
    6. Nesting objects
      3m 23s
    7. Aligning and distributing objects
      4m 20s
    8. Understanding text wrap
      5m 51s
    9. Using anchored objects
      6m 13s
  13. 26m 17s
    1. Duplicating objects
      5m 37s
    2. Collecting, conveying, and placing content
      8m 58s
    3. Rotating objects
      2m 22s
    4. Scaling objects
      4m 21s
    5. Skewing objects
      1m 9s
    6. Mirroring objects
      3m 50s
  14. 24m 19s
    1. Applying basic character styling
      7m 31s
    2. Applying advanced character formatting
      4m 28s
    3. Changing case
      3m 23s
    4. Using Find/Change for text formatting
      5m 3s
    5. Using Find Font
      3m 54s
  15. 33m 11s
    1. Applying formatting to a paragraph
      4m 5s
    2. Spanning a paragraph across multiple columns
      2m 10s
    3. Splitting a paragraph into multiple columns
      1m 52s
    4. Using drop caps
      3m 26s
    5. Setting tabs
      7m 55s
    6. Adding rules (lines) above or below a paragraph
      3m 23s
    7. Adding automatic bullets
      4m 10s
    8. Numbering paragraphs
      6m 10s
  16. 19m 47s
    1. Creating and applying paragraph styles
      6m 10s
    2. Using character styles
      4m 45s
    3. Editing and redefining styles
      2m 20s
    4. Using object styles
      2m 47s
    5. Applying styles with Quick Apply
      3m 45s
  17. 39m 59s
    1. Creating a table
      4m 29s
    2. Adjusting rows and columns
      4m 36s
    3. Adding and deleting rows and columns
      3m 0s
    4. Formatting a table
      4m 32s
    5. Formatting cells
      6m 2s
    6. Applying table styles
      5m 33s
    7. Placing graphics in cells
      3m 1s
    8. Importing Microsoft Word and Excel tables
      8m 46s
  18. 16m 45s
    1. Building a multi-document book
      7m 27s
    2. Creating "continued on..." jump lines
      3m 51s
    3. Constructing a table of contents (TOC)
      5m 27s
  19. 23m 8s
    1. Exporting EPUBs
      6m 12s
    2. Creating an interactive PDF
      12m 49s
    3. Building a Flash SWF
      4m 7s
  20. 28m 1s
    1. Checking a document with the Preflight panel
      5m 26s
    2. Packaging for output
      3m 34s
    3. Using the Print dialog box
      4m 52s
    4. Printing a small booklet
      2m 46s
    5. Exporting a PDF
      7m 56s
    6. Exporting text
      3m 27s
  21. 1m 25s
    1. Next steps
      1m 25s

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Watch the Online Video Course InDesign CS6 Essential Training
8h 24m Beginner May 07, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

InDesign is an essential tool for design firms, ad agencies, magazines, newspapers, book publishers, and freelance designers around the world. This course presents the core features and techniques that make this powerful page layout application fun and easy to use. Author David Blatner shows how to navigate and customize the workspace, manage documents and pages, work with text frames and graphics, export and print finished documents, explore creating interactive documents, and much more. He also covers popular topics such as EPUBs and long documents and includes advice on working with overset text, unnamed colors, and other troublesome issues that may arise for first-time designers.

Topics include:
  • Getting started in just 30 minutes: the quick start guide to InDesign
  • Understanding your workspace
  • Creating and setting up new documents
  • Creating and applying master pages
  • Entering and editing text
  • Placing graphics
  • Working with color and gradients
  • Editing frame and path shapes
  • Working with layers, objects, and groups
  • Rotating and scaling objects
  • Applying character and paragraph formatting
  • Using styles
  • Creating and formatting tables
  • Exporting to EPUB and interactive PDF
  • Packaging, printing, and exporting your final document
David Blatner

Exporting EPUBs

The EPUB format is quickly becoming the file format for eBooks around the world. You can view EPUB files on iPads, NOOKs, and most other tablets, as well as on Desktop computers. Now, InDesign can export your document as an EPUB, although it might take a little bit of work to get it looking the way you want. Let's take a quick look at how this document has been constructed. On page one, we have an image, and the title. When I look at the next spread, I see the title page, and it's made up of several different text frames, and an image.

The chapter opener is made up of two text frames; one that has the chapter number, and one that has the actual story. And then from there, we can see, we have the rest of the story. I do notice, however, that when I select one of these images, I get a little anchor icon in the upper right corner. That means that this object is an inline object. It's fixed in place, so that if the text reflows, the image will flow too. Let's go make the EPUB. I'll go to the File menu, and choose Export. InDesign asks me to save it with a name, and a location, and the key is that I need to choose EPUB from the Format pop-up menu here.

When I click Save, InDesign opens the EPUB Export Options dialog box, and there are a lot of features in here. I'm not going to go into all of them, and in fact right now, for my first EPUB, I'm simply going to click OK, and see what we get. InDesign exports the EPUB, and opens it in Adobe Digital Editions. Now, if you don't have Adobe Digital Editions, or some other EPUB reader on your system, you may have to go to, and download the newest version of Digital Editions onto your system. I can see here that I have the image. I don't have the name of the book; I'm not sure what happened there, and when I go to the next page, I can see, here's where the problems begin.

The name of the book completely disappeared, except for the letter A, and all of this other text is out of order. There's the rest of the name of the book, and this image, which is also out of order, and what happened to the words Chapter I? Where did those go? Well, I happen to know that if I scroll all the way to the end of this book, there they are: Chapter I. That's definitely a mistake. So let's go back to InDesign, and fix it up. The thing you have to understand about EPUB is that it's a lot like a Word document: it's very linear; starting at the beginning, ending at the end, and you have to control what is going to go in what order.

InDesign by itself has no idea what order you want. So let's go back to the title page by pressing Option+Page Up, or Alt+Page Up a couple of times, and I'm going to open up, from the Window menu, the Articles panel. The Articles panel is the way you that you can control the order in your document. The first thing I'll do is add a new article. I'll click on the New Article button, and give this a name: frontmatter. Click OK, and now I need to start adding objects to my frontmatter section.

I'll select all three of these text frames, and simply drag them in, until I see that little black bar, and when I let go, all those objects show up here. It's not necessarily in order yet; I need to move AHISTORYofART up. That looks pretty good. Now let's go to the next spread. Option +Page Down or Alt+Page Down, move this out of the way; let's create a new article. I'll call this chapter 1. Now I'm going to add Chapter One -- that actual text that says Chapter I -- and then the rest my story.

Because the story threads from one frame to the next for the rest of the document, I don't have to go and add the rest of those frames to my article; just the first one. I've decided that I don't want that cover image in my EPUB. I want to open the EPUB directly to the title page, so I'm not going to include that in my Articles panel. It's really helpful, when you make an EPUB file, to give the reader some navigation tools, like a table of contents. The way you do that is to go to the Layout menu, choose Table of Contents Styles, and then create a new table of contents style that looks for the paragraph styles that you want to put in the navigation.

I've already done that in this document. I've created one called Contents. Let's edit it. You can see that it's looking for two different paragraph styles: subtitle, and Chapter title, and it's going to put any paragraphs that are tagged with those paragraph styles into the Navigation panel in Adobe Digital Editions. We'll see that in just a moment. Click Cancel to come out of that, and let's go make our EPUB. File > Export, save this out again; it'll ask if I want to replace it.

Sure, I don't need that old one. Now, I want to change the Content Order from Based on Page Layout, which is like saying, InDesign, you pick the order, to Same as Articles panel, which is like I pick the order. I also want to choose the table of contents style that I just looked at from the TOC Style pop-up menu. And finally, I'm going to go to the Advanced pane of the Export Options dialog box, and I'm going to tell InDesign to split the document every time you see a chapter number. By splitting the chapter, it ensures that the chapter number always begins on a new page.

Now I'll click OK, and let's see the EPUB. Our EPUB is now in exactly the right order, based on the Article panel. Starting with the title in the right order, now we see Chapter I starting on a new page, and it goes right into our story. The great thing about EPUBs is that they always reflow based on the device, the font, and even the size. So, for example, I can change the size here to a larger font, and it'll automatically reflow. If I want to jump to a specific section in the EPUB, I'll open the Navigation panel from the Reading menu.

In this case, I only exported one chapter of my document. Here, I'll open this little twirly triangle, and we can see the various sections that are inside this chapter. Jump to ANCIENT GREECE AND ITALY; you can see it takes me right there. While this brief introduction to EPUB will get you started, there's obviously much more to creating high-quality EPUB files. It's an art as much as a science. If you want to get into making great quality EPUBs, and Kindle Books, I highly recommend that you watch Anne-Marie Concepcion's titles on EPUB, here at the Online Training Library.

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