Smashwords Formatting Guide for Open Office

Smashwords Formatting Guide for Open Office

  1. Turn off auto-formatting (Format > Auto-Correct > While Typing). Make sure this is turned off or it will automatically make incorrect changes to your document.
  2. DO NOT USE TABS. If you used tabs in the original document, you must strip formatting by copying and pasting into NOTEPAD. (Click anywhere in original doc. Ctl+A (Select all), Ctl+C (Copy), Click into the notepad document and Ctl+V (paste)) Then, highlight the tabbed space, Ctl+C to copy, Ctl+H (Replace), Ctl+V (Paste) and click “Replace All”. This will remove all tabs.

    What you need to use instead of tabs are automatic indents. I will show you how to do this below in #4.

  3. This new document should not have any headers, footers or page numbers turned on. If you have them in there, remove them or start a new document that doesn’t have any of those things.
  4. Add all Italics back in to the manuscript if you “nuked” it as explained earlier.
  5. Create new style. Smashwords Heading – Arial, 16 pt font, centered, .30 below, .30 above, Bold. Go through the manuscript and highlight all of your chapter titles, then click your new style “Smashwords Heading”. This should now make your title Arial, bold, 16 point font, centered with a .30 space above and below.
  6. Create new style. Smashwords Default – Times New Roman, 12 point, Single Spaced, First line indent (.30). This style is for all of your text. Go through each chapter’s content and highlight each section, then click on this Smashwords Default style to make all of the text automatically indented to .30, single spaced and in TNR font.
  7. Create new style. Smashwords Center – Arial, 16 pt, centered, .30 above and below, Bold. You will use this for headers that are centered.
  8. Make sure all chapter titles are now “Smashwords Heading” and all text is “Smashwords Default”. Any other centered text like front matter and section breaks, use “Smashwords Center”.
  9. Do not use more than 4 or 5 returns in this document. If you want to give more space to separate chapters (or if you want to use page breaks), place a few returns above and below the page break or the between the old and new chapters in order to give plenty of spacing. I return 3 times at the end of a chapter before the next chapter heading. I personally do not recommend using page breaks.
  10. Add Bookmarks to each Chapter Heading (Highlight chapter name, then (Insert > Bookmark). When naming bookmarks, do not use any spaces or special characters like apostrophes or dashes.
  11. Create a Table of Contents (centered).
  12. Add Hyperlinks to ToC (Insert > Hyperlink. Click on “Document”, then click the bullseye on the right that says “Target in Document”. Bookmarks. Select the text of the chapter bookmark you created above. Test each hyperlink to make sure it works!!!
  13. Insert Book Cover into beginning of document. (Right Click > Anchor > As Character)
  14. Insert centered front matter. (copyright notice, dedication, etc.)
  15. Add centered and linked back matter. (links to social media, letter to readers, excerpts, etc.)

6 thoughts on “Smashwords Formatting Guide for Open Office

    • Louise, I’m not sure what you mean. Where are your headers getting cut off? Inside the epub after you upload and it converts? The best I can say is try it and see if it helps!

  1. I have a document that I know will work on Amazon. I wanted to see if I could put it on Smashbooks. Since I also don’t use Word, I was looking for how to go about this process and came across this site.
    Unfortuantely, most of the stuff in this guide makes no sense at all. The things I barely understand or don’t understand at all are items 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 11(I have one that works until I start trying steps 5-8 which breaks the TOC), 12, 13(the image in OpenOffice doesn’t display correctly if I use As Character).

    It looks like a good guide it those things were explained much clearer. With screen shots.

    • Makes plenty of sense. The Author is instructing you to make styles inn a VERY specific fashion. These styles are for different types of text. Headers, the body of your text, and centered matter

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