What’s up with Ingram?

Ingram’s ebook conversion tool—how good is it?

Ingram Content Group owns Lightning Source and IngramSpark. Lightning Source was forefront of the print-on-demand publishing scene in 2010. The set up of books on this system was, and still is, complex. Ingram realized this after a few years and established IngramSpark with an easier system to navigate, specifically marketed to indie publishers.

IngramSpark offers ebook conversion from a print-ready PDF file, which did a remarkable job last year on my print-ready file of Save Yourself from Burnout: A System to Get Your Life Back by Dr. Marnie Loomis, ND, and Beth Genly, MSN. Filled with subheads, lists, quizzes, charts, illustrations, and indented material, this book was a true test for this free tool and I was amazed by the result. There was only one area where a few paragraphs were indented that shouldn’t have been. The rest of the elements looked great. From those results, I’ve been recommending this tool to my clients who want to use IngramSpark to print and distribute their books.

This month, I’ve been working with my longtime client Teresa Neumann on her fourth book. For her first book in 2010, she chose Lightning Source because IngramSpark wasn’t an option then. We’ve used Lightning Source for her other books because it makes sense to have all books in the same place for financial reporting, tracking, title set up, etc.

I told Teresa about Ingram’s ebook conversion tool, recommending we use that if we could test the results before releasing it to the public. (I meticulously design and test ebook files, which cost money so the free tool makes sense if the results are correct.) She agreed, and I proceeded with her print book title set up on Lightning Source.

Here’s the head scratcher: Lightning Source does not offer that ebook conversion tool! Apparently, it’s good enough for self-publishers using IngramSpark but when it comes to larger publishers (which is the target market of Lightning Source), then Ingram’s word is nope, that’s not good enough.

Frustrating at best.

Help for Independent Presses

Book Design and Production

Have you written a nonfiction or fiction manuscript? After it has been professionally edited, I can design the interior pages and cover, plus guide you through the maze of book publishing and printing. To get started, call me at 503-690-2438 to discuss your project and my helpful guide for authors.