Monday, December 1, 2014

Uploading to Google Play

Good Morning. As I said a few weeks ago, I was trying to upload to Google Play. Let me just say right now, it is a NIGHTMARE. I know what I need to do, and so far have managed to do it, at least THREE times, but the durn system at Google still says I have an unsanitized epub file. Whatever that means.

Here is what I had to do (and why so many people don't upload there.)

First, the interface is horrendous. Nothing is easy. Navigation is foggy at best. You need certain codes for countries, certain codes for monetary denominations, and if you don't have your own ISBN, they'll give you one, but write it down as soon as you get it, because you need to change the name of your files to that.

(Instead of THE LADY'S MASQUERADE.epub I had to write HQ873GKL4986_interior.epub. For the cover, you also have to rename that to HQ873GKL4986_frontcover.jpg. And you need the cover, otherwise the book won't show up in Google Play/Books.)

Second, well, I'll just tell you the steps I had to do. By the time you're finished just reading this you'll have a headache.

Upload the Mobipocket creator to computer. Also upload Calibre with the latest system (2.11.0), and Adobe Digital Editions. All are FREE downloads.

1)Save your Word.doc file to html. (File>save as>webpage filtered (a box will pop up and ask if you want to save it as some of the office specific tags will be lost -- click yes)

2) Upload your html file to the Mobipocket Creator with cover to create a prc.doc. (The same way you'd create a file for upload to Kindle.)

3) Upload your prc.doc to Calibre to create an epub version.

4) Download this file to Adobe Digital Editions to see if you can read it.

5) Then attempt to upload it to Google Play.

Now, as I said, I've done this 3 different times, using 3 different computers (2 laptops one of them a Google Chromebook and a pc). None of them took. Which I still can't understand if I'm using a Chromebook. Land sakes it's made by Google.

I've gotten the run-around asking the HELP desk for help. Bianca said that if I can read it on Adobe, then Google should be able to upload it, and if it's still processing in two days, then write back and they'll check the problem. It's been 4 days. I can read it just fine on Adobe.

I also tried uploading to this new interface called Liberio, which is supposed to create the proper document that Google wants. This is another nightmare. I tried it once, spoke to the creator of this new interface (who is very nice and tried to help all kinds of ways, but had no idea what the problem was with my documents.) Within a week of my problem, they rolled out a new way to upload -- through Dropbox -- which I then tried, but that too did not work. I gave up on Liberio.

Suffice it to say, uploading to Google Play is not easy. However, I'm going to give it one more shot. (Maybe two, I'm going to see if it makes any difference if I use a Word 2007 document rather than a Word 2003. It could make all the difference in the world, but then again it could be another exercise in futility.)

I honestly don't know what the problem is. I've never encountered this problem with any of the other booksellers before. My docs, no matter what they're written on, have always uploaded successfully.

If I had to guess, I'd say my problem is, I have no idea. They (Google) won't tell me. I mean, what is an unsanitized epub anyway? Is there doo-doo in the margins? Did my spilled tea make it into the document? Does it smell? Who knows. No one will tell me. I even Googled "unsanitized epub" and that's when Liberio popped up so you could make a sanitized one.

I wish they would just TELL me what I'm doing wrong so I could fix it. I'm not stupid. No matter what I have to do is a learning curve, but damn it, I've learned just about all there is to learn about publishing documents. I can even read html code. (I'm not very good at it, but I can do it.)

So, my experience with Google Play has not been very good. But that's not to say that uploading there can't be done. I'll let you know how the next round goes.

Tell me -- Do any of you out there have a clue what a sanitized epub is? Have any of you uploaded to Google Play? Did it work? How did you do it?

Anne Gallagher (c) 2014