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Hint:  scroll to the bottom if you want a fast answer without reading through all my gobbledygook explanations and descriptions and chatter.

 

First, after uploading my Kindle cover and publishing my book, everything looked just fine.

HMU KDP

 

Later, when I went on the Amazon site to see what it looks like. This is what my book cover looked like:

Hint: ALWAYS go on the sites selling your books to verify how it looks to your potential readers.

amazon no image available

 

After some days where I unsuccessfully tried to re-upload the cover, even shrinking the file size a few times and trying again, and republishing it (because on the KDP publish your book site it all looked perfectly fine), and waiting for it to go live to view it on Amazon again, only to have the same “No image available” Kindle book cover, then abandoning it because I didn’t have the time . . .

(Wow, that is one run on sentence!)

After some days of doing nothing, my “No image available” Kindle book cover turned into this on the Amazon site:

Kindle Book Cover Wont Show

Pretty, huh? Not what I was going for.

 

Why won’t my Kindle book cover show on Amazon?

I tried to search this question online with zero hits. I’m a direct kind of person when it comes to online searches. (Obviously I did not word the question right because there is no shortage of blogs answering this question.)

“Odd,” I thought. After all, it can’t be an uncommon issue with so many self-publishing authors DIYing it.

I also had no issues with any of the other books.  So, after using the same template for the book cover, I knew it has to be something simple.

Either I had an internet connection issue, or it’s a problem with the file.

When it’s a file issue, the most likely culprits are an incompatible file type, or a problem with the size of the file.

 

On kdp.amazon.com’s help link, it lists the ideal dimensions for the cover file as being 2560 X 1600 pixels. The minimum size is 1000 X 625 pixels. The maximum size you can go is 10,000 by 10,000 pixels.

Now if you are like me, with limited digital and computer geek knowledge (geeks are beautiful people, by the way, so this is not to be insulting), you would be staring at your screen now with a confused look going, “Eh?”

These aspects, which are a foreign language to me, are in relation to the physical dimensions. The height and width of the cover.

Here’s a fancy fix to that confusion:

(This is in Adobe Photoshop Elements 2018)

Go to Image Size:

adobe image size menu

 

Adjust your Pixel Dimensions, which will also adjust your Document Size width and height.

If you look at this, my latest attempt to resize my cover, I did NOT do it right. My height is over the allowable pixels height.

Adobe Image Size

 

Changing that every time shrinks my cover size increasingly smaller than the print book size. That’s okay. This is a digital ebook cover that most people will not read on any device that big.

Adobe Image Size2

 

 

Now, while you need a decent sized cover file to have it show as decent quality to your readers who pay good money to read your book, file size also can’t be too big.

Kdp.amazon.com’s max’s out your file size at 50MB.

At this point I’m going “?”

HMU file size

 

How does KB translate to MB?

1 KB (kilobyte) = 0.001 MB (megabyte). I had to look that up.

 

Simple math: divide the KB (2,336) by 1000.

Ie) move your decimal left three spaces (the number of zeros after the 1 in 1000)

2,336 KB divided by 1000 = 2.336 MB

 

 

So why did my file NOT work on upload to KDP Amazon?

amazon no image available

Simple. My height is too damned big.  And at only 2.33 of a possible 50 MB, in my attempts to blindly reduce the file size, I also probably decimated the picture quality with shrinking the resolution. Yeah, I did shrink that multiple times.

Adobe Image Size3

The lesson learned:  take the time to figure out what you are doing before you do it.

Yes, it’s a no-brainer.  But, I figured, the problem is simple, and it was. And I was in a hurry.

 

The fix.  Since I already buggered my file (this is why you ALWAYS save an original unaltered version. ALWAYS!), I had to go back to the start and redo it.

Not so big.

  • I had to re-crop the print book cover to the front cover only for the ebook.
  • Save as a JPEG or TIFF (the only cover file types supported for ebook, unlike KDP’s print on demand book covers). I use TIFF.

(Yes, I did also commit the tomfoolery of changing the file to a JPEG, something I don’t normally do, in my efforts of reducing the file size while *hoping* without actually taking the time to check that this would solve my problem. As you can see from the TIF file size below, this was completely unnecessary.)

JPEG vs. TIFF:

  • TIFF = larger file size (not compressed, therefore detail is preserved)
  • JPEG = smaller file size (compressed file, causing detail loss)
  • JPEG in a TIFF = same limitations and detail loss as a JPEG (because it is a JPEG)
  • Resize the pixels to fall below 10,000 in either direction (height specifically, the width will fall in line because my proportions are “constrained”)

Adobe Image Size4

HMU file size2

 

YESSSS!!!!  SUCCESS!

Amazon HMU

 

 

The quick answer:

Make sure your cover falls within these specifications:

Digital cover size:

Smallest – 1,000 X 625 pixels (or 625 X 1,000)

Best – 2,560 X 1,600 pixels (or 1,600 X 2,560)

Largest – 10,000 by 10,000 pixels (or 10,000 X 10,000)

 

Digital cover size:

Largest – 50 MB (50,000 KB)

Really? 50,000 KB looks so . . . big.

 

 

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