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46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13297 Members Latest Member: - Shane786 Most online today: 32 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Scribus?  (Read 3203 times)
David Artman
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Posts: 606

Designer & Producer


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« Reply #15 on: May 22, 2009, 07:58:43 AM »

A couple other freeware publishing apps:
Kile - Yet Another LaTex Editor, but quite full-featured for all that.
Open Office - Good for both structured documentation AND doing manual layout. If you find Scribus's page-layout paradigm too klunky for a large book, go with OO. Not a bad drawing app in it, either (for charts, graphs, flowcharts, etc).
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Designer - GLASS, Icehouse Games
Editor - Perfect, Passages
Selene Tan
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Posts: 167


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« Reply #16 on: May 22, 2009, 12:21:38 PM »

My ideal medium to write a book would be a good markup language like reStructuredText and an automatic conversion into a layout I like. RST looks like this:

(snip)

I like it because it's trivial to edit, it's very readable, can be stored in a VCS, and it can be automatically converted to html, rtf, latex and pdf (through latex). Maybe I'll work on turning that into a proper output (custom latex and scripting?) eventually but in any case, I don't want to put my text in a DTP until the text is done.

I seem to remember that when Clinton wrote The Shadow of Yesterday in reStructuredText, exported it as HTML, and imported it into OpenOffice Writer to do layout. OO Writer kept his styles intact so he was able to do the initial layout with the headings, etc. in place. He wound up switching to Scribus later, and picked it partly because it could read his OO Writer files.

Here's an article about Clinton's process.
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RPG Theory Wiki
UeberDice - Dice rolls and distribution statistics with pretty graphs
Vordark
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Posts: 58


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« Reply #17 on: May 22, 2009, 01:24:24 PM »

I've used Open Office extensively and finally gave up on it.  I bought MS Word and Excel a few months ago and have been using them ever since.

Is it possible/not-hair-pulling to layout a full book that looks nice using Word?  My understanding (from back in the day) is that trying to make a word processor do DTP type things is like chewing razor blades.  Has this changed?
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greyorm
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My name is Raven.


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« Reply #18 on: May 22, 2009, 04:36:22 PM »

Has this changed?

It has improved. Today it is more like trying to chew dull razorblades.
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Rev. Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan
Wild Hunt Studio
redalastor
Member

Posts: 22


« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2009, 04:09:06 AM »

Is it possible/not-hair-pulling to layout a full book that looks nice using Word?  My understanding (from back in the day) is that trying to make a word processor do DTP type things is like chewing razor blades.  Has this changed?

If you want a Word Processor that does not suck at layout, you have to look at WordPerfect.

There's a free trial (one month, full functionality) available at Corel's website: http://www.corel.com/servlet/Satellite/ca/en/Product/1207676528492#tabview=tab0
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reason
Member

Posts: 19


« Reply #20 on: May 27, 2009, 08:32:49 PM »

I've found Scribus sane, useful, and good for getting the job done. BUT, you really have to go with the 1.3.5svn branch at the time of writing here. The 1.3.3 stable branch is terrible in comparison.
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Clay
Member

Posts: 559


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« Reply #21 on: June 01, 2009, 11:03:58 AM »

I haven't ever tried to lay out anything of size in Scribus.  It's really good for character sheets and one or two page items.  I don't think that I would like trying to lay out something like a GURPS or World of Darkness book using the package.

If you need automation of any kind though, Scribus is going to be hard to beat.  When I interviewed Clinton for that Linux Journal article, he mentioned that without the ability to use Python to automate things he never could have used it to lay out The Shadow of Yesterday.
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Clay Dowling
RPG-Campaign.com - Online Campaign Planning and Management
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