As a writer I accept I should be up with all the latest ways a writer connects with his or her reader. But I’m not. I tend to find one thing that works for me and stick with it until something comes along to convince me to change.
As much as I love new technologies, I have trouble keeping up with all the options for ebook reading: there’s just so many new devices, formats and files to keep track of. That’s why I try and keep it simple. And when it comes to ebooks—reading, writing; selling and buying them—I’m currently focussed on one thing:
Now as a mac, iPhone and iPad user it might seem strange that my preference is a ‘PC friendly’ application but what can I say? Kindle works for me. And from what I gather from my googling I’m not alone. Sure there are plenty of people using other eReader/app combinations (and I bet they could teach me what makes their choice the best) but a growing number of us are doing the iPad/Kindle-app thing.
One of those new iPad ebook readers is Mandy, a friend and Tennis-playing chum of my mother-in-law, who bought and read my first book, The Last Great Day, and whom wants to buy my latest book, Zippin Pippin too. Since she’s due to go travelling soon though instead of the paperback version she wants to fire up her iPad and load my new book as her first eBook—and maybe add some other titles by other authors before she hits the road.
My mother in-law told me Mandy was wondering if I might give her a couple pointers via email, to help her out, and I thought I could go one better and not only guide Mandy in her first eBook download but anyone else who wants to know how to read an ebook on an iPad.
So here goes…
A guide to downloading your first eBook for iPad
To me there are two main options for reading ebooks on an iPad (or iPhone):
1) the ‘inbuilt’ iBooks app (which comes with a couple of books)
2) the downloadable Kindle app (for which you can also get ‘free’ books)
Personally I always choose to read in the Kindle app. My iBook library has a few books but I haven’t added any to it in ages while my Kindle library is growing almost daily. If you want to know the pros and cons and this versus thats of the various other readers and file formats I’ve included a few links at the end of this post. But for now, and since all I want to do here today is help any new iPad users get up and running as quick as possible, I’m going to focus on my choice of iPad eReader, the Kindle app.
Here’s what you do:
1) If you don’t already have an Amazon account surf over to and sign up for one HERE
2) Download Amazon Kindle app for iPad/iPhone HERE
3) Search Amazon for a book you want to buy. For the purpose of this example let’s say you, like Mandy, want to buy ZIPPIN PIPPIN. Go HERE. (N.B. Make sure you click on the ‘Kindle edition’ option when books are also available as paperbacks).
4) Click buy (or if you want to sample before you buy, navigate over to the right of the page and click ‘Send sample now’.
5) Watch as your eBook magically transports to your Amazon account.
6) If you have set up your account to automatically send new purchases to your iPad it should be there now. If not you can send any purchase to any of your registered devices (iPad/iPhone/computer) by clicking on ‘Manage your Kindle’ (even though you are technically ‘managing your iPad’) in your Amazon account management, and scrolling down on each digital copy and clicking ‘send to *whichever device you chose*’.
A couple of things to remember:
- When buying a new book you will need to be surfing Amazon via your web-browser (you can’t buy directly from the Kindle app).
- You can also email and/or upload mobi files and pdfs directly to your Kindle app (and I might do a little post about that sometime too).
Until then here’s a couple of eBook reading links. The first is to an interesting and comprehensive article, and the second to a helpful video:
Hopefully this post will help Mandy—and anyone else new to iPad ebook reading—to get started.
I’m no expert on these technical things but I’m willing to learn and very happy to share whatever I find out. If you’ve got any other tips for new eBook readers please feel free to leave a comment.