Check out Atlantis Word Processor. Works a lot like Word 2003 but is a tiny download for only $35.
The big huge feature is that it will create EPUB files directly from your manuscript. They may not be perfect but the free Sigil app is almost always able to make up the difference.
Look in page set up in your document.
I use 1' margins and it was okay for Nook and Kindle.
I did use .doc, but I think .rtf is supposed to work.
It may, I'm not sure, be the page size is fouling things up.
When I saw my preview, it looked like the manuscript page.
I don't know if there is another thing causing the problem.
Let us know how you do and if you need, ask more questions.
I hope tp see you published here.
Thank you! The Atlantis worked. I still had to clean up a bunch of formatting problems, but it's almost finished. The one problem I still ahve that is truly mysterious is that the preview shows a garbage page that is almost blank with a few black patches as the first page before the cover.
Problem is neither the Atlantis doc nor the pub doc have anything before the title page so I'm stumped about how to get rid of it. Any ideas?
When you say a 'Nook color preview' do you mean a Nook Color or the nook app running on a PC?
It's been my experience that there is no substitute for the actual e-reader hardware for verifying your work. Generally, if it looks good on the device it will be fine on the PC app. But the PC app will often do things that are allowed in EPUB but not necessarily well supported on the dedicated devices.
It's even worse on the Kindle. There are certain functions supported in the MOBI format that the Kindle itself won't do because of how Amazon implemented the menu system. I've had several occasions when something looked fine, especially tables, on the Nook but couldn't be done on the Kindle and I had to create a graphic as a substitute.
You have to go by the lowest common denominator. Unless you're project is strong color oriented, you need to make it work on the regular Nook. All other platforms will have mitigating factors. The tablets have higher resolution and the smartphones have scaling features.