Tools of the Trade

Guest post
by Dick Waters

This is something I found very handy, and some writers might not know about it.

I write my novels in my office, which is mostly during the daytime. With many other distractions, it may have been days since I last wrote manuscript content. So, I have to refer to my spreadsheet outline to get an overview of what I wrote the last time. Inevitably, that is not enough and I have to read the last few chapters to get a better sense of chapter content etc.

This takes time, and time takes away from manuscript progress. I have found an easy way to accomplish this without taking away precious writing time. I send a copy of my in process manuscript to Amazon. That allows me to read the current draft in bed and pick up where I left off the next day without impacting writing time. This has nothing to do with the publishing process.

Let me explain how to do this using Amazon and the Kindle:

I send an email to my email address on Amazon with the following extension – ‘’.

Example: ‘’

The subject of the email needs to say ‘convert’

Attach the manuscript file to the email message.

(I use Microsoft Word and just attach the .doc file without saving it as anything else.)

Approximately five minutes later I receive an email in my email account that the file is waiting for me on my Kindle. I could just have gone to the Kindle to wait for the file.

If you try this; when you go to look for your file, it will be in a ‘documents’ folder on your Kindle device. Books are in one large segment and documents in another.

On the same line as – ‘Cloud | Device Books (##) v Title v’.

Click on Books and a popup should appear that lists something like – ‘All Items, Books, Periodicals, Docs, Active Content.’

Click on ‘Docs’ and you should see a list of documents. Your manuscript will be listed as the file name you sent for conversion. Click on your manuscript file and you should see your draft manuscript in Kindle format, just like it was a published book.

What is nice is that it shows what your manuscript will look like on the Kindle. For me, it gives me the opportunity to read the last few chapters, or even the whole manuscript, without impacting writing time.

Note: I have an account with Amazon, and if you do not have one; setting up an account is easy to do.

I hope this gives you a tool you can use to help with optimize your writing time.

Dick Waters is the author of the Scott Tucker mystery/thriller series. He is a member of Arizona Authors, Desert Sleuth Mystery Writers and Sisters in Crime. He is also a multiple winner of the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction writing competitions. Learn more about Dick from his Amazon author page.

Author: Dick C. Waters

Dick C Waters is a Contributing Author for Indies Unlimited and author of the Scott Tucker mystery novels; Branded for Murder, Serial Separation, Scent of Gardenia and Fragrance of Revenge (soon to be published). For more information please see his Author Central Page

13 thoughts on “Tools of the Trade”

  1. This is a cool idea, Dick, thanks! I can also recommend this for the editing process. I find that my book looks different enough on an e-reader that it helps me spot errors.

    1. DV – my pleasure. Please let me know if you have any issues, because I have not had any. I could see this process working for beta readers. (i.e., send the draft manuscript to them, and let them follow the process to send to their Kindles.)

  2. Very nice Dick,

    I’ve use the same method, in fact, I also email it to one of my beta readers as I go, not so much for editing, but to have them up to speed when its time for them to get going.

    Thanks for sharing.

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