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Field Guide to Fixed Layout for Ebooks

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In the fast moving world of digital content, one hot-button issue is the creation of static, fixed ebook "pages" called fixed layout. The popularity of fixed-layout ebooks is growing, but many people are still unsure why and when fixed layout is a good idea. To make matters worse, there is no single standard for creating fixed-layout products and information on creating them is rapidly changing and sometimes hard to find.

To help address these challenges, BISG, through its Content Structure Committee's Fixed Layout for Ebooks Working Group, created the Field Guide to Fixed Layout for Ebooks. It's a practical guide to the ins and outs of creating fixed layout ebooks from industry experts, featuring information on when to use fixed layout (and when not to), accessibility issues, interactivity, retailer standards, authoring tools, and much more!

Topics include:

  • When to use fixed layout
  • How to make fixed layout
  • Accessibility issues
  • Syncing text & audio
  • Retailer standards
  • Common problems
  • Authoring Tools
  • Cross-platform EPUB Fixed Layout content, specific EPUB Fixed Layout issues commonly encountered on different reading systems and specific steps to fix them
  • And more...


The newly revised Version 1.2, released in October 2014, includes a new chapter on "Authoring Tools" which covers the new Adobe InDesign CC fixed layout EPUB export tool. This revision also includes updated material on reading system conformance, with the addition of information about Nook and Kobo platforms, to help content creators ensure a consistently good reading experience across the various reading systems.

BISG intends theField Guide to Fixed Layout for Ebooks to be a living, evolving document and as such, plans to update the guide frequently. We welcome industry participation. If you know of recent developments, or have suggestions for other topics to cover within the document, please let us know. 

Edited by: Dave Cramer, Hachette Book Group

Copyedited by: Patricia Fogarty

Laura Brady, Brady Typesetting
Garth Conboy, Google
Dave Cramer, Hachette Book Group
John Costa, S4Carlisle
Markus Gylling, IDPF
Jean Kaplansky, Aptara
Bill Kasdorf, Apex CoVantage
Liz Kessler, Hachette Book Group
Liisa McCloy-Kelley, Penguin Random House
Julie Morris, BISG
Jonathan Thurston, John Wiley & Sons

© 2013, 2014 the Book Industry Study Group, Inc. 



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