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Author Topic: Is Scribus suitable for long books?  (Read 2887 times)

Hellerick

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Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« on: November 25, 2015, 05:57:16 am »
Earlier I already used Scribus for a short newspaper, but I am thinking of creating a book about 200 pages long.

No complicated formatting. The text I need currently is kept in DOC and HTML format (with all words soft-hyphened), I have to combine it with about 20 or 30 illustrations. It turned out quite difficult to force MS Word to position the illustrations where I want them to be positioned, also I want page numbers to be omitted on pages consisting of nothing but an illustration, which is why I'm currently seeking another software.

Can Scribus work for me?

Nermander

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Re: Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2015, 09:12:56 am »
Older versions of Scribus have some speed problems working with long documents, but I think those issues are solved by now. People used to try to split their books into one file for each chapter and then put everything together at the end.


But I wouldn't have any problem doing what you want to do in Word:

As for image placement in Word, you need to find out the anchor point (the image will move with the anchor point). The anchor is shown when you select the image and can then be dragged (without moving the image). Then an image can be positioned relative to a lot of different references: the paragraph where the anchor is, column edges, page margins, page edges etc.

To omit page number on some pages you need to use section breaks and set up a different footer for the sections where you do now want page numbers.

utnik

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Re: Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2015, 10:27:34 am »
hi hellerick

what nermander wrote is true – if you know ms-word good enough, there's no problem with the placement of the images.
but i would prefer scribus for this project, because:
  • better options for the .pdf export
  • automatic hiding of page numbers behind full page illustrations
  • better microtypology
but it will be a bit of a learning curve. layout programs and text editors are working different.
usually you don't have to split the document to work with 200 pages of text, but it's good advice to split the chain of connected text frames after each section (if there are any…) otherwise every change on one of the first pages leads to a time consuming reformatting of the whole book.


utnik

Hellerick

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Re: Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2015, 11:49:42 am »
How I'm supposed to start such book?

Let's say I want to create a 30-page document, would I have to create 30 pages, manually create a text field in each of them and manually link them together to make text flow from one to another? Is there a way to automate the process?

As for image placement in Word, you need to find out the anchor point (the image will move with the anchor point). The anchor is shown when you select the image and can then be dragged (without moving the image). Then an image can be positioned relative to a lot of different references: the paragraph where the anchor is, column edges, page margins, page edges etc.

The point is I don't want a picture to have any anchor. I want the pictures and the text to be independent from each other (it's fiction literature and there is no need for illustrations to be too close to the scenes they describe). But there were very complicated relations between text and illustrations in MS Word, like the text would refuse to fill up a page etc.

Nermander

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Re: Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2015, 02:00:19 pm »
I still think it can be achieved in Word, you just have to understand all the different options in Word. There are at least half a dozen settings that affect how text and images interact.

You won't get a "page" in Word unless there's a paragraph on it, and then the anchor can be in that paragraph. But the paragraph can be otherwise empty, and you only need one paragraph on the page.

Since you wanted the page to have no page number, you should use a separate section. So you will have:

Section break (start section on new page)
Empty paragraph with the image anchor
Section break (start section on new page)


But if the images are to stay on the same page no matter how the text is changed I think Scribus is a better option.

There is an option called Automatic text frames that is useful for adding many pages.

utnik

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Re: Is Scribus suitable for long books?
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2015, 04:08:01 pm »
hi helllerick

How I'm supposed to start such book?

first you have to decide about the program.
i fully agree with nermander. your book can be done either with word or with scribus – but you need to know the one you chose better the you do now!

Quote
Let's say I want to create a 30-page document, would I have to create 30 pages, manually create a text field in each of them and manually link them together to make text flow…

unlike with text processors like word, with scribus you really have to create your pages. but when creating your document of 200 pages (you can add or delete some later…), you may set the margin guides acording to the text area and check the box for automatic text frames. with this setting every page contains a textframe and the text flows from one to the next like in ms-word.

Quote
I don't want a picture to have any anchor. I want the pictures and the text to be independent from each other

every item is anchored somewhere. in scribus the anchor is related to the page. (but you could have this in word as well – text related anchors are only one option. just double click on an image and check your options…)

if you have a full page image, you may yust delete the text frame on this page – the chain wont break for this. with smaller images, you need to select one of the text flow options of the image under 'properties' (f2) → 'shape'

as i wrote in my last post, you should split the text chain in shorter sections.(import the first section, open the chain after the last used frame, put the second section in the next frame – and so on…)

…and i think you'll need the scribus wiki to get some scribus basics .

utnik
« Last Edit: November 25, 2015, 04:13:00 pm by utnik »