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E-book writing tool

Create e-books that are compatible with handheld readers with this free tool.

Books are here to stay, but paper is an endangered species. While libraries full of actual books won't be disappearing any time soon, electronic books like Amazon's Kindle have established a firm toehold in the market, a trend that will continue as more titles are published as e-books. That's where Visual Vision's eBookWriter Lite enters the story. It's a free tool for creating and publishing e-books, but it's not a compiler. It's a complete visual environment that requires no knowledge of coding to use, yet it creates single-source-file e-books that can be opened in any reader and distributed online. Built-in copy prevention, expiration dates, and password capabilities help protect your intellectual property from misuse and theft and give you more control over its distribution.

The program's quick-start tutorial includes links to online documentation and a PDF-based manual. We closed the dialog and pressed F1, per instructions, and the program's skinnable interface and tutorial opened. The interface resembles a typical word processor, with basic control icons and a ruler-defined field, though you can also customize the look and layout. This program works differently from most word processors in that it's based on HTML and uses browserlike functionality to search for, insert, and modify text. Since it creates a single eBook file that you can load and use in portable devices, you can't just string a bunch of individual pages together like with typical word processors, so it's important to follow the program's guidance. We started by clicking New eBook on the File menu and typing in some brief text, following the tutorial's recommendation for getting comfortable with the way eBook Writer creates pages. We saved our "book" and then reopened it for editing, which involves familiar procedures like insert, format, and spell-checking. The program offers unique and helpful features at every turn; for instance, right-clicking the main view calls up a menu with a useful "Quick special link" to regularly used items. You can import and export e-books in .ebw and other file formats, too.

This is a fascinating and unique tool that you can use to create whole electronic books or convert existing text into an e-book-compatible format, and we recommend it.

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