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Possible/How? "Accordion" (expand and collapse) text in an ebook novel, please help

New Here ,
Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

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I'm writing my first novel and plan to sell it as an ebook on Amazon etc. I want to have several "optional sections" inside the body of the text (not a menu or table of contents). SO...
...in this way, at various points, readers can expand a section (for a nerdier/more thorough explanation of a subject mentioned), OR the user can choose to skim right by that accordion button and stick to the story.

Please advise as to the viability of that in an epub or AZW/AZW3 format and how InDesign can execute this (or which app I should use instead -- I have Adobe Creative Cloud, but I'm trying to figure out which app is best for me).


My guess/hope is that AZW3's capability to support HTML/CSS will enable the functionality I'm seeking.

Please correct me.


Thanks and good karma to you!

- Dan

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EPUB , How to

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Expert , Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

The only way I can think of to implement something like what the OP wants is to include the optional text as sections at the end, and using links to jump back and forth. Not elegant, but with some separator pages to help isolate the material, I think it would work well.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

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This is not possible natively with InDesign. You might want to explore multi state objects to see if you can at least get some kind of functionality that will let users tap to view more information.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

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This would be entirely dependent on the reader, and I'm pretty confident that Kindle readers don't support any version of these capabilities. It could be done with a web browser and Javascript, but not in any ebook reader I can think of. 

 

While EPUB and to a lesser extent Kindle are HTML based, most readers are about the equivalent of a browser from 15 years ago and support very few advanced features.


╟ Word & InDesign to Kindle & EPUB: a Guide to Pro Results (Amazon) ╢

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Community Expert ,
Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

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I assumed (yeah, I know) that this was for a fixed layout but if it's not, even thinking about it is a waste of time.

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Community Expert ,
Jul 25, 2023 Jul 25, 2023

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The only way I can think of to implement something like what the OP wants is to include the optional text as sections at the end, and using links to jump back and forth. Not elegant, but with some separator pages to help isolate the material, I think it would work well.


╟ Word & InDesign to Kindle & EPUB: a Guide to Pro Results (Amazon) ╢

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New Here ,
Jul 27, 2023 Jul 27, 2023

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Thanks @James Gifford—NitroPress  & @BobLevine  - appreciate your insight and advice. Be well!

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