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Fiction, book, DTP, LaTeX etc

  1. Oct 12, 2014 #1

    Borek

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    Staff: Mentor

    I am in need of preparing a book for publication (collection of short stories). Simple text, no images, no formulas, the fanciest thing needed is some paragraph formatting with left/right margins, plus some titles/subtitles. Almost doable with any word processing software.

    But I don't trust word processors enough. Eons ago I would just use Quark, but I have no access to it, nor a legal version that I could install. Buying it for a single book is not an option.

    I can hire someone, but first I want to take a look at other possibilities. My first bets are LaTeX and Scribus (yes, completely different philosophy, but it is the end result that I am interested in).

    And other ideas? Any experience with using LaTeX for fiction?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 13, 2014 #2

    Borek

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    Staff: Mentor

    Sigh, I need more - I need footnotes (or endnotes, both will do). And I just found Scribus doesn't support them (at least not the stable 1.4.4). They should be supported in 1.5, but it is only in dev version as of now and I don't like the idea of using dev version of the program I don't know.
     
  4. Oct 14, 2014 #3
    If you already are familiar with latex I would use that.
    Aren't there latex style files that create good looking 'normal book' layouts? I remember creating and using style files a lot for my thesis work to tweak the layout of the defaults styles (article, beamer, book) to my satisfaction.
    I haven't used it myself, but the memoir package or the tufte-latex package sound very useful for non-science book-projects, but they are huge and powerful packages so it might take a while to create something nice. If you don't need extremely fancy things, maybe creating your own style file is sufficient for your purpose.

    This link also seems interesting if you need something fancy, like you sometimes see at the start of fantasy/medieval book chapters:
    http://tex.stackexchange.com/questions/1319/showcase-of-beautiful-typography-done-in-tex-friends
     
  5. Oct 14, 2014 #4

    Borek

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    Staff: Mentor

    I am afraid my knowledge of LaTeX is limited to the formatting of equations, not to LaTeX itself.

    That being said, I believe I have enough experience with different kinds of languages to make it work (and I can afford spending a day or two trying to fine tune the output to get what I need). memoir and some other style (devoted to SF books, I don't remember the name at the moment, but it can be localized in no time) seem to be a good starting point. That much I already know.
     
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