Novel template for Pages

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by ThunderRoad, Sep 1, 2016.

  1. ThunderRoad macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    #1
    I'm looking to set up a Pages template in the style of a standard novel. So facing pages, certain column widths and that sort of thing. New to the program though, and whilst I love it I can't find out how to do this.

    Thanks
     
  2. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #2
    I'm not a writer, but I believe there are better apps than Pages for a task like this.

    "Scrivener" (sp?) comes to mind.

    This suggestion based only on what I've read elsewhere. Pages (with the right template) may do what you need to do...
     
  3. MechaSpanky macrumors 6502

    MechaSpanky

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    #3
    ThunderRoad,

    You didn't mention a couple key pieces of information. Are you looking for an app so that you can writing a novel or are you looking to put a novel together that you have already written (as in laying it out) or possibly both? Also is this something for traditional publishing (commercial printing) or for e-publishing? As well is your intended audience the mass market or home/amateur orientated?

    Mecha
     
  4. chscag macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #4
    I second what member "Fishrrman" stated above about Scrivener. Pages is not suitable for long documents such as a novel, dissertation, etc. I suppose you could design a template and use it but you would still be limited by the program itself. MS Word would be better, but again, Scrivener is designed for that type of writing.
     
  5. ThunderRoad thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    #5
    I've actually found pages to be really good, though I admit I haven't made any huge demands on it. Thanks for the advice about Scrivener, but I'm hopeful there'll be a cheaper alternative for my needs (see below).

    Sorry, should've been more specific. I'm in the process of writing a novel, and more than anything I'm just interested in laying it out right now. I want to play with paragraph/chapter size and doing so would be easier if the document I was working on resembled an actual book. If that makes sense. So really what I'm after is the template of a standard paperback novel. To answer your questions, I guess that means I'd be looking at traditional publishing for the mass market. I'm writing this purely for myself really, so I don't really have any wish in terms of publishing it. But I suppose such details are probably needed even if that is the case.

    Thanks for your help all
     
  6. MechaSpanky macrumors 6502

    MechaSpanky

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    #6
    ThunderRoad,

    I like Scrivener for writing but I wouldn't use it to layout a book. Scrivener is a great program but it isn't a layout program, it is a writing program. For layout, I'd use InDesign or Quark Xpress and that is what most professional publishers would use as well (some might have an old copy of Framemaker but it is unlikely because it is so old). From my experience, most authors just write the book using their favorite word processing program (sadly it is often Word) and then when it is time to publish it, they give the publisher (or a designer) the file and they take that file and import it into a layout program and design the look and layout of the book (the font size, line spacing, etc). Putting a book together is rather complicated, especially if you aren't used to doing it. Most of the time it is left to professionals. Most designers are familiar with gutter, bleed, footnotes, etc. But there are more complicated things that you have to know about when you put a book together. Things like creep, imposition, not to mention how to calculate the thickness of the spine based on the number of pages and the weight of the paper that is going to be used (not easy to do if you aren't used to it). Normally the printer will take care of the creep and impose the pages but in some cases you need to be aware of it when you are designing the book.

    If you are making it more for yourself, you wouldn't need to worry so much about creep but depending on the thickness, it might make it hard to read the pages in the middle. Imposition will be easier because you aren't using an actual printing press (it won't be easy but it will be easier). One thing that is tough if you make it yourself is binding it. Stapling or glueing are options but if I were you, I take it somewhere to be done. It is more expensive but the results will be much better.

    Best of luck,
    Mecha
     
  7. ThunderRoad thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    #7
    A lot of useful information here. Have you done something similar yourself? You sound quite experienced on the matter. I will look into the programs you mentioned and take on board everything else you've mentioned.

    Thanks so much for your detailed reply. All the best.
     
  8. MechaSpanky macrumors 6502

    MechaSpanky

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    #8
    ThunderRoad,

    I used to do a lot of design work for a big syndication company and so I worked on a large number of publications. I also worked in pre-press for a publishing company for a number of years. We would get the books ready to be sent to film or directly to plate (depending on the situation). We dealt with the pagination, imposition, added creep, and fixed problems etc. More recently I made several books for myself and I went through many of the same things that you are going through now. I made a short run (less than 20 copies) of a thin booklet that was more for educational purposes. I did everything myself. Getting the pagination and imposition correct wasn't so bad but figuring out how to bind them myself was rough. I eventually took them to a printer to have them bound because it just easier and looked better. My books were around 60 - 100 pages and while I have a stapler that will staple that many pages, it wasn't nearly as nice as the one the printer has. There are other binding methods but for my book, saddle stitching worked the best and a professional printer can do it better than I can. Writing or making a book is difficult but putting it together so that it prints correctly might be just as difficult as writing it! A good place to look for terms and meanings of terms is here: http://www.printingtips.com/default.asp

    Best of Luck,
    Mecha
     
  9. Ray Brady macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    #9
    If you're interested in traditional publishing, you don't want to spend any time on formatting. Agents and publishers want to see 12 point Times New Roman, double-spaced. That's it. If you submit something with formatting contrary to their submission guidelines, it will be rejected out of hand.

    My recommendation is to get the writing done first. Once your manuscript is in its final, polished form, and you're ready to start submitting, you can format according to the guidelines provided by the agent or publishers you're soliciting.

    Now, if you're self-publishing, that's a slightly different matter. In that case, templates will be available from whatever service provider you choose, like CreateSpace or Lulu. Nevertheless, finish the manuscript first. Formatting should be your final concern.
     

Share This Page