Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

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Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby Moe Shinola » Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:01 am

I want to prepare the pages of a short book of poems & 1 short story that my mom wrote years ago and finally wants to see in print. I'll upload the PDF to Magcloud(most likely) and have them make 5 or 10 perfect bound copies. I've been researching different freeware publishing programs, like Serif(not able to DL from their site) and the Adobe Creative Suite 30-day demo(same problem). Also DL-ed Scribus, but the tutorials indicate it's for brochures and anyway they're confusing. A friend chided me for starting this project in a word processing program, but then she went to a swanky publishing institute and looks down on word processors, I guess. If anyone has a word of encouragement or any advice I need before I get too much farther into this, please feel free. I've also been listening to Hamish MacDonald's DIY Books podcast which has some great advice for 1st-time publishers. Thanks for any good word you can offer and best wishes!
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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby Hagar Delest » Thu Mar 08, 2012 10:09 am

Learn about styles first, it will spare you time later if you need to make global changes to your formatting.
There is a link at the top of the Writer forum to the online guide.
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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby rudolfo » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:42 pm

As long as you have content that is in a rectangle format (paragraphs of text, most tables, pictures or graphics in a rectangle format) and some headings in between OOo Writer is good enough for you. Multiple columns on a page would be still okay. But headings that spread over 3 columns while the rest of the page is following this 3 column layout are more difficult. This is where a desktop publishing software as Scribus has its strengths. Also if you have text that should flow around a round picture, this is an area where a DTP program is the better choice.
But usually if you are writing a book "everything is happening in rectangles", so OOo Writer should get it done.
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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby TheGurkha » Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:45 pm

Backups.

And plenty of them.
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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby EdIsenberg » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:16 am

Where to begin?

First, I echo The Gurkha & others: make backups with different file names that include a version # or version date. Do this anytime you've made a major change, especially relating to formatting and other global changes that might inadvertantly screw up something already done or something to be done later.

Second, create a spreadsheet that includes the following columns at the very least: DATE, DAYS SINCE LAST DATE, AND WORK DONE. In the WORK DONE section write down what you did. I'm enclosing an image of my NOTES spreadsheet to give you an idea:

Image of NOTES spreadsheet (smaller).jpg


There are so many other things you should do, much of them having to do with how you organize your writing. For example, I have a great many spreadsheets that keep track of important things, such as a list of characters, a novel timeline that goes back before the actual story begins to show important events that would later be important, Sources, etc.

Here are three images of the same spreadsheet, showing the left, center and right portions, and only going down just to the prologue. I'm sorry they are so small; there's a limit to the size of an uploaded image.
Oops: WIll have to post another message for the right side and some final coments.

1s - Scenes, Plot Events, Settings, Character Arc, Opening Scene Evaluation.jpg

2s - Scenes, Plot Events, Settings, Character Arc, Opening Scene Evaluation.jpg
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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby EdIsenberg » Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:19 am

3 - Scenes, Plot Events, Settings, Character Arc, Opening Scene Evaluation.jpg


There's more you should keep track of, but it could fill a book!

If you wish to contact me feel free to do so. I think there's a way to do that person to person. If not let me know and we'll figure a way w/o me giving my Email address to everyone.

BTW, my science fiction novel, The Guardians, should be available on Amazon & Kindle by the end of August.

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Re: Publishing a book with Writer - wish me luck!

Postby John_Ha » Wed Jul 05, 2017 3:18 pm

You have made an excellent choice with AOO Writer - it will be very good for a book as it is very stable and fully production worthy.

See [Tutorial] Authoring e-Books in AOpenOffice (epub, ebook) for an author's thoughts.

Richard Farr's You are Here was written using Writer and he came to this forum for help with formatting it.

The three most important things to do are backup, backup and, finally, backup. Save each day's work as a new, separate folder or ZIP file so that you can recover your work from any day. For example if your book is saved in C:\My Documents\My book, then each day take a copy of ...\My book and save it as ...\2017 07 05 My Book. Also, backup daily to to something external to your PC - an external disk or, preferably, the cloud (eg Google Drive or Dropbox etc). Think about what would happen if your PC was stolen or you got hit by ransomware.
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See the Writer Manual, the Writer FAQ, the Writer Tutorials and the Writer guide.

Remember: Always save your Writer files as .odt files. - see here for the many reasons why.
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