How to Export Your Kindle Highlights and Notes

I love to save money by buying used books, because I read a lot. But if the book is one I plan to highlight a lot, I pony up and get the Kindle e-book. Here’s why you should too.

How to Export Your Kindle Highlights—and Save Them

(Photo courtesy of Unsplash.com)

While reading an e-book I like to highlight key quotes or passages, add my own notes, and even share some of that content on social media. My Kindle reader on my iPad mini allows all of that. Pretty sweet.

While these features are nice, they aren’t compelling enough to fork over the price of an e-book (even though most are only about $9).

But one additional reason makes it totally worth it—especially when highlighting your Bible.

The Benefit of Kindle Highlights vs. a Physical Book

Highlights in a physical book stay stuck in a book. If you want to see your highlights you have to flip through the book. If you want to copy them, you have to type them out.

But I’ve found at least two benefits of using Kindle highlights:

  1. An E-book allows you to export your Kindle highlights and notes and save them (as I do) in Evernote or in a word processor. That way you have them to use wherever and whenever you want. (I picked up this tip from Michael Hyatt.)
  2. If you can also export and save Bible verses you want to share or memorize.

Here’s how.

7 Steps to Export Your Kindle Highlights

If you’d like to try this without buying an e-book, just download any free Kindle e-book from Amazon. There’s a huge selection.

NOTE: If you’d like to export your highlighted Bible verses in your Bible e-book—and you also want to know the reference after you export—you’ll want to add a note to the verse with the reference in it. That way the reference exports beside the highlight.

1. After you have highlighted your e-book, go to your Amazon Kindle page. (Yes, you have one.) Log in.

2. Click Your Books at the top (don’t click Your Highlights).

click your books

3. The page will list all of your Kindle e-books. Click a title of one you’ve highlighted. (You may have to scroll to the bottom to click forward to see more books.)

click a book.

4. At the top right, click the link that says “You have XX highlighted passages . . .” You will then see all your Kindle highlights for that book.

click highlights

5. You can select and copy your highlights, of course, but I prefer to save them to Evernote via the Evernote Web Clipper. With a couple of clicks, all of my Kindle highlights are exported to Evernote. (Evernote has a Web Clipper for your browser, if you don’t have it yet.) In Firefox, it looks like this:

evernote clipper

EvernoteIf you don’t already use Evernote, it’s free for a basic account. What’s nice is that you can get a whole month of Evernote Premium FREE as my guest. I use Evernote to help organize my piles of papers and files at work and home. From bills to blogs, from songbooks to sermons, from cards to conference notes, Evernote has helped me go virtually paperless.

6. Go to Evernote, sync your account, and see your note of Kindle highlights!

7. You could stop here, but I like to remove all the unnecessary linked text like “Read more at location” and “add a note.” (If you’re anal-retentive like me, read on.)

  • Copy all the text in your Evernote note and paste it in your word processor.
  • Use your “Find and Replace” command (or its equivalent) and type in the text you want to remove, (such as Read more at location). Leave the “Replace with” field blank.
  • Click “Replace All” and all that text disappears!
  • Repeat this to remove any other unwanted text or formatting.
  • Select all of your text and copy it; then paste it back in your Evernote note.

One more tip: Did you know that you can borrow a Kindle e-book from someone else (if you’re an Amazon Prime member) and highlight the book as you please? Then, before you return the book, just export your Kindle highlights.

Tell me what you think: What other benefits of Kindle highlights can you think of? To leave a comment, just click here.

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