How to read eBooks from Smashwords on Kindle

by Narelle Atkins

I recently received a free eBook from Ann Lee Miller after she visited my group blog International Christian Fiction Writers. Ann’s book, Kicking Eternity, is currently available for free on Smashwords

Ann sent me a lovely email which included instructions on how to download eBooks from Smashwords on to my Kindle. I freely admit I love my Kindle and as time goes on I’m choosing to read more books on my Kindle. When purchasing eBooks from Amazon, I press the “buy now” button and the Kindle eBooks magically start to download into my Kindle within seconds. After spending years waiting weeks for new releases to ship to Australia from the US, the instant gratification provided from a Kindle purchase still puts a smile on my face.

We have started selling Leader’s Guides to accompany the free Bible Study questions on our website through Smashwords.

Smashwords offer our eBooks in multiple formats, including the .mobi file format for Kindle. And it’s very easy to download the .mobi files and transfer them to your Kindle.

If you have “Kindle for PC” set up on your computer, the Smashwords .mobi files should automatically default to be saved in your My Kindle Content folder. The My Kindle Content folder is usually set up as part of your “Kindle for PC” installation and listed under “My Documents” in your computer.

Smashwords will save two files on your computer. The first is a Kindle Content .mobi file and the second is a .mbp file.

Once the Smashwords files are saved on your computer, your “Kindle for PC” program will be able to open the eBook and you can start reading straight away.

There are a couple of ways you can transfer the Kindle Content .mobi file to your Kindle. Firstly, you can plug your Kindle into your computer using the USB connection, open the Kindle drive and copy the Kindle Content .mobi file into the “Documents” folder in your Kindle drive.  It’s the same process as transferring a file to an external hard drive or USB memory stick.

If your Kindle has a wireless connection, you can set up a free email address in your Amazon Kindle account so you can transfer files directly to your Kindle. The format for the free email address is: yourname [at] free [dot] Kindle [dot] com

Amazon provides step by step instructions on how to set up the free “Send-to-Kindle Email Settings ” under “Personal Document Settings” in your Amazon account. I have set up my Amazon Kindle account so that the default destination for all files sent to my Kindle account is “Narelle’s Kindle”.

Once you have the free Kindle email address set up, all you have to do is attach the Kindle Content .mobi file to an email addressed to yourname [at] free [dot] Kindle [dot] com and the file can be wirelessly downloaded onto your Kindle device in the same way eBooks from Amazon are downloaded.

If the default destination in your Amazon account under “Manage my Kindle” is your iPhone, then the file will be delivered to the Kindle app in your iPhone.

When you email the .mobi file to your Kindle account, the eBook will be listed in your “Kindle Library” under “All Items”. Using the “Actions” button you can choose to deliver the eBook to a different device. This means you can have access to your eBook on your PC, Kindle and devices that have a Kindle app eg. iPhone.

Also, you need to set up an account with Smashwords before you can purchase an eBook. The eBook you purchase can be placed in your Smashwords library and you can download the eBook in multiple formats at a later date. If your computer crashes, you can go back into your Smashwords account and download the eBook to your new computer. You may want a pdf version of the eBook as well as a copy of the eBook on your Kindle.

I hope this quick overview will help you download Smashwords eBooks onto your Kindle. The process is straightforward and the instructions provided by Amazon are user-friendly. Happy reading!