It seems like just yesterday- my first Amazon KDP failed manuscript experience. I thought my book was NEVER going to get published, and the frustration made me want to cry! (Between you and me - I did cry! It was that painful). So I get it!
I understand how many aspiring authors feel when they encounter this part of the KDP publishing process. There are a few guidelines that your manuscript will need to meet in order for your upload to be successful, and it can be tricky to make sure everything is in order.
There are five main reasons why an Amazon KDP manuscript upload can fail; Let's take a closer look at each of these and how you can avoid or correct them.
- 1. Faulty Tables In Your Manuscript
- 2. Images That Don’t Follow Amazon’s Guidelines
- 3. Inaccurate Metadata (Book Details)
- 4. Content Missing From The Manuscript Or Typos
- 5. Unsupported Formats/Characters
Top 5 Main Reasons For An Amazon Kdp Failed Manuscript Upload
1. Faulty Tables In Your Manuscript
I know this doesn't seem like a likely reason, but if you opt to use tables in your manuscript, there are a few guidelines you will need to follow to ensure that your KDP upload does not fail.
The general guidelines to bear in mind when using tables are:
- Breaking up large tables into parts and reusing the table headers across all sections. You are allowed to use up to five columns, and 50 rows are allowed per table.
- Avoid using images within the tables.
- Also, avoid adding sub-tables inside larger tables.
2. Images That Don’t Follow Amazon’s Guidelines
Another major reason manuscript uploads fail on Kdp is faulty images. To ensure that the images in your book are suitable for upload on Amazon, be sure to follow the following guidelines:
- Images should only be in .JPEG and .PNG formats.
- You should be able to read the text inside the image.
- It is important that images in normal view are not too small. You can preview them in Kindle Previewer.
- Pixelated images should be avoided.
- Images should not be split into multiple images.
3. Inaccurate Metadata (Book Details)
The third main reason for failed manuscript uploads is inaccurate metadata. The metadata of a book includes things like its title, author name, and so on.
Inaccurate information or information contrary to the details filled in on the details page will be flagged during upload and cause it to fail.
Faulty metadata can result in inaccurate searches and hamper readers' ability to make informed purchasing decisions which is the last thing Amazon or you, as the author, needs. Here are a few common metadata issues you should be sure to avoid:
- Select the incorrect language from the language dropdown when setting up the title.
- The uploaded manuscript has less than 45% of the selected language in its content.
- The name of a co-author listed on the detail page is missing in the manuscript.
4. Content Missing From The Manuscript Or Typos
As a self-published author, it's important to make sure your manuscript is free of typos and other errors before you upload it for publication on KDP. Not only will this ensure that your readers have a positive experience, but it will also help to avoid any problems during the upload process.
Clear and concise writing is essential in order not to lose any content or meaning in your work. Therefore, editing your manuscript thoroughly before you upload it is essential to ensuring the underwriters at KDP find no glaring faults in it.
The most common missing content issues to look out for before uploading is:
- Missing open/closed quotation marks (" ")
- Missing explanations to accompany footnote references
- Missing punctuation marks
5. Unsupported Formats/Characters
Upon conversion, if your book contains text that appears as strings of question marks in boxes or unreadable jumbled characters it will typically result in a failed upload.
Usually, this is because your book contains an accent mark or character that is not supported. Kindle Previewer will help you determine if your book contains unsupported characters. A few common things to look out for are:
- Content That Is Automatically Translated
As a general rule of thumb, always have a fluent speaker carefully review the results of an automatic translation tool to ensure they are acceptable. Most auto-translation tools, through easy to use, are often inaccurate or may even ad unwanted characters.
Here's an automatic translation example of a quality issue:
का चयन करें… colTwo colun1,
तालिका Truncate विवरण
- Image of Text Used Instead of Actual Text
It's easy to see why someone might be tempted to use scanned pages from a physical book instead of typing out the text themselves. After all, it can be time-consuming to transcribe a book, and it's not always easy to format the text in a way that looks good on an eBook reader.
However, this approach is almost always a recipe for disaster. Scanned pages are often of poor quality, and they generally don't meet Amazon's standards for Kindle eBooks. As a result, your manuscript may be rejected if you try to upload it with images instead of text.
How To Handle Specific Error Message After A Failed Manuscript Upload
|Error message||Issue||Recommended fix|
|The language you selected for your book does not match the language. The language information needs to be updated and resubmit your manuscript.|
This is what you’ll see:
|This is a republishing of an old title in an Indian language that was suppressed earlier when KDP didn't support the language.||Ensure that the language in the Book Details section matches the language in use Kindle Previewer to check your content for errors. Republish your title in your KDP account.|
|You have entered your book details in a language different from the language from your book details.||Double-check the language selected in the Book Details section. Reattempt your manuscript upload.|
|Please update each section's language tag to reflect the language of the book you are using and resubmit.|
This is what you’ll see:
|Explore the language options for bilingual books.||Double- Check the selected language. You should select English as the book language if more than 60% of the content is in English.|
The error occurs if less than half of your book's content is in the selected language.
|Your uploaded file does not contain fonts that are Unicode compliant.|
This is what you’ll see:
|There is an encoding error in the Unicode format,||Recreate your Word document. Switch over your settings to UNICODE format.|
Make a copy of the content in the old file and paste it into your new one. Save your file and attempt to resubmit.
|Amazon’s system cannot read text in 8-bit proprietary ASCII fonts. The fonts in your language must be in UNICODE.||Your document likely contains regional language fonts that are not Unicode (a standard that represents characters). |
To fix this, follow the above steps to create a new Word document in the correct format. Then try to re-upload your new file.
KDP Support Runaround: Upload Failing (kdpcommunity.com)