Confusion among authors of digital and print books on several writer forums and discussion boards show that page count is a mystery to many authors.
Question at the KBoards:
“I’m a little confused about the Amazon page count for Kindle. I published my first book with a word count of 19,000 and it’s listed as being 71 pages.
A year later I published a second book with a word count of 25,000 and it’s listed as being 65 pages. I thought the formula Amazon used for page count was approx. 250 words a page, but this doesn’t seem to be the case…”
A Seasoned Author Explains:
“Once a print edition is made, the Kindle version description will display the count for the print version. Until then, it’s an estimate on Amazon’s part.”
“What I’ve found over time, however, is that Amazon seems to be doing more than just counting the number of words; they’re also checking out page breaks. Amazon is probably taking the file content and runs it through a formatter to come up with an estimate that comes out close to a real-world print book. Tellingly, my first book’s print edition has a page count almost identical to what Amazon estimated for the non-print edition, and they did that estimate before the print edition was ever uploaded to CreateSpace.”
“Based on my print layout matching the results so closely, Amazon’s estimates might use a template of 4.75″ x 7.5″ after margins, factor in page count, and either respect the original font sizes you picked or else use 11pt for the base and scale everything else appropriately. In print my first book uses those exact dimensions (next book I’ll give the gutter a full inch; here it was 3/4) and has 11pt Cardo for the body font.”
“We have no firm idea what actual algorithm Amazon is using, except it’s obviously not merely dividing words by a fixed Word-Per-Page.”
Check the Page Count.
Author Lewis Carroll: “I published print first, then e-book. Unfortunately, Amazon never carried the page count over to the e-book and continued to display an estimated page count for weeks. But a quick e-mail solved that problem and within a couple of hours they updated it.”
Find a useful counting tool / page calculator at TranslatorsBase.com that shows you word count, pages, lines, characters, etc.
Paste the text of your book (after formatting or layout) into the field, click “calculate” and voila! you receive all the numbers.
Readers Are Wondering Too…
Questions like these are appearing: “How do I view real page numbers on my Kindle?” or “Why doesn’t my Kindle book have real page numbers?”
Answer: “The page number update is only for the kindle 3. If there are page numbers odder for the book (the publisher has to do it), then you’d simply press the menu key while reading the book and you will see the numbers. The numbers are not viewable without pressing menu, they do not remain on screen.”
“On your Kindle, you will tend to have many more screens of text than there are pages in the book – make the type bigger or smaller, and you’ll have that many more or fewer screens – so it’s completely fluid. Thus it’s not really what people tend to use for navigation – you use software bookmarks and the table of contents and the percentage of the book you’ve read.”