Is a Book 135x120 mm. something for scribus?

Previous topic - Next topic


I'm a Retired Typographer and Designer who has worked in QuarkXPress for many years (which I no longer have access to). Now I want to investigate whether Scribus can help me produce a book 135x210 mm, mainly with one font (straight and italics) + chapter headings and no illustrations.

Workflow: The author writes script in Ms Word with Times New Roman. I am proofreading and linguisticly editing continuously and checking correct typography. The text is then transferred as a whole to me in one document (word). Without a problem, I open the document in LibreOffice and save as odt. All text formatting is included in LibreOffice. My intention is now to be able to flow the text in its entirety to page templates in Scribus. Times New Roman in script will be replaced by Book Antiqua or similar. I have understood that the selected font must contain genuine Italic /Bold. This is what I would have done in, for example, QuarkXPress.

I have only used Scribus for a few days but already found some possible problems described as lost formatting between LibreOffice and Scribus. Therefore, I have described the workflow in its entirety.

As I described, it is important in my workflow to keep the formatting already in detail in the author's script (Word > LibreOffice (odt) > Scribus. LibreOffice saved as odt has been described by users as the correct way to keep the formatting). This has failed for me in various attempts. What am I doing wrong?

Returns with other questions separately. E.g. I have not found any command for indentation on the first line in a paragraph, even when I type a text directly in Scribus. A blanc line in manuscript is almost always replaced by square indentation.
Such things ...

Best regards and thanks for answers and comments.


QuoteI have only used Scribus for a few days but already found some possible problems described as lost formatting between LibreOffice and Scribus.

Others who are more experienced users of Scribus (I am recent to the Scribus field) will probably advise you that external text styling is lost when migrating content from external editors you have mentioned.  Scribus certainly comes with advanced features in layout of documents for the print shop but in my view the loss of legacy styling of content is a weakness in the import pipeline.

Recently I have been studying how to overcome this loss of external styling. I conclude that a way forward is to export epub from say LibreOffice (or other editors, including markdown/Pandoc which I am using). Then the problem to solve is how to transfer the epub document (ebook) into target Scribus document. At least an epub document (which internal content can be inspected in Sigil) is a standard and preserves original styles. However in going from ebook to Scribus the colour profiles will still need to be optimised for printing rather than the colour profiles used in web or ebook reader. That much I learned from studying this forum.

This python library seems to offer one bridge between external ebook and Scribus document model.  At least this is my own enhancement roadmap.  There are other migratory bridges I have investigated such as regarding Scribus document as XML document and using xquery to target internal xml elements. That option also works nicely.  The advantage is that Scribus document can be held in an xml database and can emulate some of the features of inDesign.

Look also at the scripting options in Scribus.


Thanks for the reply. The road you describe seems difficult and as an experiment, I'm considering following your path according to the link "ebooklib ...". At the same time, I will review the posts describing the possibility LibreOffice (odt) > Scribus. So far, not even the correct font, italic/bold, indent the first row followed by to Scribus in my attempt. Nevertheless, I've read somewhere (Text and Typography) read that it would work, while it does not seem to be a big deal for users. The way I described as my workflow seems, from my horizon, to be natural. That the author, the designer and the Scribusartist are not usually the same person (unless a simple print is made for the sake of pleasure). And in that case, LibreOffice is perfect. I myself have easily tested templates for the author to approve in lLibreOffice. Even a simple brochure should be easier to produce without the help of Scribus or InDesign. With long learning curve.

I am completely ignorant of the difficulties with formatting between, for example, LibreOffice and Scribus. It's easy to think: it works without problems between eg Word, OpenOffice and LibreOffice, it should be easy to fix it even in Scribus.

Forgive my long expulsion. Just my curiosity to understand how everything is connected. Feel free to comment on other Scribus users. Greetings.


hi erix

Quote from: Erix on October 30, 2018, 07:18:44 PM...possible problems described as lost formatting between LibreOffice and Scribus.

you may keep the paragraph styles while importing your text from .odt. but unfortunately character styles and direct formatting will be lost (unless you do something along the markdown lines described by dragonfly...)

QuoteI have not found any command for indentation on the first line in a paragraph.

take a look at 'tabulators and indentation' in the 'style manager'.