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Text Overflows - I'm confused... Sorry.


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Hi,

I'm a bit confused. I looked in the forum but I do not seem to find the detailed answer I was after. I apologise if it exists and I clumsily missed it.

  1. How does text overflow from text area to text area in one page?
  2. How does text overflow from text area in one page to the next page?

The project is a 300-page book, approx. Now... the issue is if I use Microsoft Word, text flows automatically. But I would rather use Affinity Publisher because if I produce the book, in its entirety, I will save a few thousands in post-production from a MS Word "manuscript".

I thank you all in advance for any advice, as I am fairly new to Affinity.

Kind regards

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Hi Lewis. Put your text frames on the master page - Publisher doesn't create them for you automatically. If using facing pages, link the left and right text frames together.

Then, with just page 1 in your document (don't create more pages manually), import your text into the frame on page 1. That frame is from your master. Shift + Click the overset text icon and Publisher will create all of the additional pages required and link all the text frames together for you.

More information here:

Cheers

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.4 from this forum - expanded 300-page PDF

My system: Affinity 2.4.0 for macOS Sonoma 14.3.1, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

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Using that method to import a manuscript from Word, I have found that Affinity Publisher ignores my carefully placed SECTION (not page) breaks at new chapters. Shouldn't it recognize chapter breaks? I suppose there's a work-around to create chapter breaks, such as discussed in another recent discussion thread here, but why should we have to apply time-consuming, manual work-arounds for something that should be automatic?

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2 hours ago, Will Wallace said:

Using that method to import a manuscript from Word, I have found that Affinity Publisher ignores my carefully placed SECTION (not page) breaks at new chapters. Shouldn't it recognize chapter breaks? I suppose there's a work-around to create chapter breaks, such as discussed in another recent discussion thread here, but why should we have to apply time-consuming, manual work-arounds for something that should be automatic?

Section breaks in a word processor like MS Word are very different from sections in a page layout app like Publisher. In Word, a new section can start at any point in the text, even in the middle of a page. A section break in a word processor is identical to a page break in that it's an invisible control character in text. It's typically used to change the layout, say from one column to two columns, since word processors lack master pages. In Publisher, a section is a group of pages and is used to control page numbering, and there's no such thing as a section break.

Publisher does a good job by converting all section breaks, continuous and next page, to page breaks. It doesn't create sections at these breaks which I think is for the best because using sections with frames linked from one section to the next isn't particularly useful. It could be improved – Publisher could convert a section break to a new story (series of linked frames) so that it could create a section, but this might not be what you want and you'd have to edit the new sections with the section manager anyway.

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.4 from this forum - expanded 300-page PDF

My system: Affinity 2.4.0 for macOS Sonoma 14.3.1, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

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7 hours ago, MikeTO said:

Publisher does a good job by converting all section breaks, continuous and next page, to page breaks. It doesn't create sections at these breaks which I think is for the best because using sections with frames linked from one section to the next isn't particularly useful. It could be improved – Publisher could convert a section break to a new story (series of linked frames) so that it could create a section, but this might not be what you want and you'd have to edit the new sections with the section manager anyway.

No, it doesn't. My chapter breaks are formatted in Word using section break > odd page. Publisher completely ignored them.

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5 hours ago, Will Wallace said:

My chapter breaks are formatted in Word using section break > odd page. Publisher completely ignored them.

You can set your chapter heading Text Style in Publisher to start on an odd page.

-- Walt
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5 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

You can set your chapter heading Text Style in Publisher to start on an odd page.

That's all well and good, but my chapters were already set up that way in the Word file. When it was imported into Affinity Publisher, Publisher didn't even recognize the chapter breaks at all -- I had chapter heads occurring in the middle of pages with the end of the preceding chapter on the same page.

That's not helpful. Why should I have to go back and re-do in Publisher what was  already set up properly in Word?

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1 hour ago, Will Wallace said:

That's all well and good, but my chapters were already set up that way in the Word file. When it was imported into Affinity Publisher, Publisher didn't even recognize the chapter breaks at all -- I had chapter heads occurring in the middle of pages with the end of the preceding chapter on the same page.

I can't duplicate that issue. I tested it and for Word styles that had Page Break Before set, they were set the same way in Publisher and started on a new page. Which versions of Publisher and Word are you using? Can you provide a test file that shows this issue?

2 hours ago, Will Wallace said:

Why should I have to go back and re-do in Publisher what was  already set up properly in Word?

You're importing a Word file into a text frame so certain things aren't maintained. Publisher doesn't have a feature to open a Word file and maintain all of its layout which is what you really want. It's possible to do that but Serif (and Adobe) haven't done that.

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.4 from this forum - expanded 300-page PDF

My system: Affinity 2.4.0 for macOS Sonoma 14.3.1, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

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On 6/16/2023 at 2:02 PM, MikeTO said:

Hi Lewis. Put your text frames on the master page - Publisher doesn't create them for you automatically. If using facing pages, link the left and right text frames together.

Then, with just page 1 in your document (don't create more pages manually), import your text into the frame on page 1. That frame is from your master. Shift + Click the overset text icon and Publisher will create all of the additional pages required and link all the text frames together for you.

Hello Mike,:)

Thank you for taking the time to assist with my enquiry, much appreciated.

There are, however, two points I want to raise:

  1. I would instead use Affinity Publisher to write the book, rather than using MS Word and then importing the whole text. I think using MS Word as a temporary file, basically to type text which will be transferred (copy/paste) might be more useful?
  2. Whilst your solution may work well in works which may require one master page, my book needs several page templates, because it is going to be heavily populated with graphics, tables, photos and illustrations, because of the subject matter of the book (a specific range of European History being the main focus).

Thus I would say that between 8 and 12 different page templates will be required to give the book body and make it more interesting and easier to read, as well as graphically far more appealing to the reader.

The question is therefore whether I can have between 8 and 12 master pages and then if/how will text flow seamlessly in the same Chapter/Section, in a scheme where MPage 1 is always the start of a new chapter and MPage 12 is always the closing page of a chapter; for example:

  1. Chapter VIII: MPage 1 => MPage 7 => MPage 3 => MPage 3 => MPage 3 => MPage 5 => MPage 12
  2. Chapter IX: MPage 1 => Mpage 5 => MPage 8 => MPage 7 => MPage 10 => MPage 12

I am not too worried about "whole-book" approaches because my working approach is chapter-based, meaning each Chapter is a separate Affinity Publisher file, each file name convention identifies the Book - Chapter No. - Chapter Title or part of it. Each Chapter is then converted to Press-Ready PDF and all PDF chapters are then assembled by the Publishing House adding the front cover and back cover.

Again, many thanks for your support and expertise.

Kind regards

All of this means that my main point of concern is how to flow text across text areas in different master pages in a random sequence.

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28 minutes ago, Lewis GGVW said:
  1. I would instead use Affinity Publisher to write the book, rather than using MS Word and then importing the whole text. I think using MS Word as a temporary file, basically to type text which will be transferred (copy/paste) might be more useful?

You can write a book directly in Affinity Publisher without issues. For certain types of books I like to write directly in my page layout app (e.g., Publisher) because I like to keep an eye on the book design. With other types of books I prefer to write in a distraction-free text editor, even more stripped down than MS Word, without worrying about the design at all. Some people also like to write in MS Word first because it has a built-in grammar checker. There's no right or wrong answer. It depends on your book and your personal preferences and anybody else you're collaborating with.

32 minutes ago, Lewis GGVW said:

Whilst your solution may work well in works which may require one master page, my book needs several page templates, because it is going to be heavily populated with graphics, tables, photos and illustrations, because of the subject matter of the book (a specific range of European History being the main focus).

I recommend creating each chapter as a separate story. A story is the text in a linked series of frames. Don't link the last frame in chapter 1 to the first frame in chapter 2.

Then for the first page in chapter 1 apply your chapter start template. In fact, my current book has these masters for each chapter:

  • Page 1 (right): Chapter Title
  • Pages 2-3: Map
  • Pages 3-4: Chapter Start
  • Pages 5-end: Basic Layout

It's actually more complex than that since every page has two masters applied but that's not important. The point is that each chapter starts with a fixed series of master pages before it gets into a standard page.

If at some point in your chapter you need a different master, say for a 2-page spread of illustrations, then break the chapter story at that point, insert a spread with that special master, and then start a new story on the next spread with the basic master again.

Cheers

Download a free manual for Publisher 2.4 from this forum - expanded 300-page PDF

My system: Affinity 2.4.0 for macOS Sonoma 14.3.1, MacBook Pro 14" (M1 Pro)

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