How to Convert Digital Books to PDF

by Judy Kilpatrick

Create an e-book from your digital book by exporting the file to Portable Document Format (PDF). PDF is the format of choice for many personal and business uses. PDF can be password protected and locked for secure transmission via email, Internet and e-readers. Many popular software programs have plug-ins or add-ins that make exporting to PDF simple and fast. Two popular word processing programs, Microsoft Word and Open Office, include features for exporting documents to PDF. PageMaker, a widely used document layout and design software program, also lets you export files to PDF. Methods for exporting are largely the same, regardless of the word processing or page layout program used.


Create your digital book using a word processing or page layout software program. If you do not already have a word processing program, you may download a free one, such as Open Office.


Prepare to export your digital book to PDF by bookmarking chapters. Under Format, click on "Styles and Format." Scroll to the first chapter of your document and insert your cursor. Then go to your "Styles and Format" menu and click on "Heading 1." Continue throughout the document to set bookmarks, internal hyperlinks that let a reader move quickly from one part of the book to another.


Complete bookmarks by scrolling to your index and highlighting the text for your first chapter. Highlight the text. Go to your toolbar and click on "Hyperlink." In the box that opens, click on "Document" and select "Headings." Click on the bookmark for the chapter highlighted. Click on "Apply."


Create hyperlinks to external sites. Highlight the text you wish to hyperlink to a Web address. On your toolbar, click on "Hyperlink." In the box that opens, click on "Internet." Type in your Uniform Resource Locator (URL, the Web address) and click "Apply."


Save your digital book. Review, edit as desired and save again.


Go to File and select "Export to PDF." Select parameters of your choice. Go to "Security" to password protect the book, if desired.


After establishing parameters of your choice and password protection, if any, click on "Export." Select a location on your computer where you will save your e-book. Give your e-book a name and click on "Save."


  • check If you already have Microsoft Word, Version 2007, you can download the Microsoft Save as PDF Add-In. With this add-in installed, you will be able to export your digital book to a PDF e-book.
  • check If you do not have Microsoft Word, you may download a free word processing suite, such as Open Office, that lets you export documents to PDF.

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About the Author

For Judy Kilpatrick, gardening is the best mental health therapy of all. Combining her interests in both of these fields, Kilpatrick is a professional flower grower and a practicing, licensed mental health therapist. A graduate of East Carolina University, Kilpatrick writes for national and regional publications.

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