writing

Working With Web Page Content in Scrivener

Scrivener is a powerful writing tool. I write about it weekly with tips and usage ideas. To read more of my posts click the Scrivener tag or category at the end of the page.

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art Used by Permission of Microsoft

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art Used by Permission of Microsoft

A while back one of the readers of this blog suggested I write a post about importing and saving web files. Honestly, I’d never thought about it since it’s just not something that I do that much. However, there are many writers out there that use features of Scrivener more often than I do writing non-fiction or using their research on a wide scale.

So here I am giving it a good try to describe how web files can be imported and saved in Scrivener. There are several points to understand about this process before we go much further and part of that is understanding what a web file is. Simply put it is a file which is encoded with html language for use on webpages whether these be public or private.

Next, why would anyone want to import a web file? Many people want to import their content to be edited and revised.

Last, why save content as a web file? Many people use this to make webpages for their websites. Personally I just copy and paste my blog content rather than compiling a web format – the WordPress.com tools are just more conducive to making the simple data transfer. I still have to add media but I’ve found that it’s easier than importing to my website. However, while many people use the WordPress software on their sites, they are hosted elsewhere so posting is different than what I do and it makes sense to compile a blog or page to html format first.

So why the difference? It has most to do with Scrivener’s editor which is admittedly not as robust as Word (Scrivener’s strength lies in its organizational and developmental features). The editor does not allow wrapping around photos like Word. So if you want to save the content as a web document and it has photos or illustrations in it you may still need to edit it in Word to get the wrapping effects that you prefer. I use WordPress.com’s features to wrap text so it makes sense for me to transfer to content and then add media.

So with all that in mind here’s how to save your content as a web document. First you must compile your finished document to html by clicking on File and then Compile to open the compiler:

Scriv Webpage Compile

Next, if you have multiple documents in the project but only want to compile one use ALT + Click (that’s press the ALT key and click) on a checkbox. Then select the individual document. Next, in the file format choose Web Page (.html) and click Compile. Select the location to save the file and there you have it.

It you have pictures and other media in the document but want them wrapped (or want to add them), just use word – you can edit a webpage from Word. From there you post your content/document according to your hosting requirements.

As a final note, you can import a web document as a .MHT which you must then save as a .PDF to view in Scrivener. To edit webpage content, it must first be imported as text. To do this, click on File, go to Import and choose Web Page as noted in this screenshot:

Scriv Import Menu

Next you have the Import window and here are screenshots of that with options for the available file formats:

Scriv Import Webpage                  Scriv Import_As Options

There’s a bit more to this that begins to relate to MML (Multi-Markup Language) which gets into a different subject altogether and too much information for this post.

Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. Interested in more of my writing? Just click one of the retailer banners on the sidebar to see more.

IMG_4154-EditAbout the Author

P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.

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Just as a note: I now have a marketing affiliation with Scrivener. For support questions, pricing, licensing and other concerns please contact the vendor. As such a buy ad for Scrivener appears on the sidebar. I’ve started this program since I like the product so much and want to offer readers the chance to obtain this software. I’m not required to write about Scrivener to be an affiliate; I just like it that much. You can also find my FTC statement on this site’s sidebar.

 

 

Quick Tip: Using Klout to Enhance Your Reach

Klout Suggestions

Some days my analytics suffer and sometimes they really click well. Part of the reason for fluctuations in analytics is availability to interact. Weekends and holidays are some of the reasons I might post less. Of course I can schedule some tweets and posts but I also need ways to share other content than my own. I’ve found Klout to be a source that supplements my social media, especially on the days when I spend less time on my author platform. Here are a few aspects of Klout that help my social media:

  • It suggests some Twitter followers for me. I’ve followed some of these and gotten extra follows back off this action.
  • It suggests articles I can schedule to tweet the next day. This is great to share content links that I like. I’ve gotten extra retweets on days when I’m not able to be as active as other days.

Businessman Speaking Through MegaphoneThese little suggestions have proven to enhance my author platform in supplemental ways that really help over weekends and holidays.

Do you have a Klout account? What do you use as a supplemental strategy to enhance your analytics when you have less availability? I’d love to hear from you so please leave a question, idea or strategy in the comment section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today!

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Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art Used by Permission of Microsoft

 

Styling Your E-Book With Proper Formatting

Introduction

The use of styles in word processing is a bit esoteric for many users. However, when formatting an e-book, styles can be very handy. With that in mind, I’ll follow-up on last week’s post about formatting by digging a little deeper into what styles are, why they are important to e-book formatting and how to use them. As a reminder, create a back-up copy of your content before formatting so you can easily revert to the original.

Does Your Manuscript Have Style?

So what’s a style and does your book have it? Well, when considering formatting, this is not so much a question of writing style as visual presentation. You don’t want to worry about this while your actually creating your content but when you are formatting styles add, well – style.

Formatting Word Styles

Styles, as implied by the term, is a way of changing the appearance of your content. That’s a simple statement but there’s much more to than that. It’s basically using a template of different format settings. In Word this is done via the Styles section of the Home menu. Using different styles means you can change headings, first lines of chapters and other sections of your content when a simple click. It’s very handy when it comes to formatting.

But why should you use it?

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The Importance of Styles

Your e-book needs style. It’s like when Kramer (think Seinfeld) found the wide-brimmed hat when he was wearing the coat from “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”. It’s just not as gaudy. The use of styles adds effects to your manuscript that improve reader experience.

For instance, if you have a book with headings or chapter titles a different style that’s in bold with larger font size can be helpful. However, you don’t want to just make those changes anywhere since they can create discontinuity if used improperly like I just did. Additionally, the first line of a chapter or scene can be enhanced so that it’s noticeably different from the rest of the text and alerts readers to the change. Styles also set apart other types of content in your e-book such as copyright, end material and block quotes (non-fiction).

So that’s a thumbnail of what styles are and why you need them. But how do you use them?

How To Use Styles

The use of styles can actually range from quite simple to complex. I’ll keep it simple here for the sake of brevity but a more thorough discussion can be found in the Smashwords Style Guide. Let’s scratch the surface to get started.

Pre-set styles are on the Home menu in Word 2007 or later. My screenshots are from Word 2010 so yours may be different. First of all there are several styles of which you may need to make use: First Line of a Chapter, Normal, Block (for non-fiction), etc. These are all changed or created from the Styles Manager. It must be noted that just highlighting and changing formatting to suit your needs may not mean that these are picked up correctly when processed by Kindle or Smashwords. Styles manage formatting on a larger, more consistent scale and allows you to change the style easily with a click or two.

In Word 2010 to modify a style right click on the style and choose modify:

Modify Word Style

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Next click on the format button in the lower left and choose Paragraph.

Word Style Modification

The paragraph properties for this style are displayed.

Word Paragraph Properties

Settings such as indent, line spacing, etc can be changed here. Try to make your “Normal” style consistent with what the whole book will be. If you will be using a first line style to forego the use of indent for the beginning of a chapter try creating a separate style. There are pre-set styles for headings, titles, subtitles, etc so don’t try to re-invent these – just change them to suit your needs. Apply the various styles besides Normal wherever necessary by click to that location and clicking the applicable style and the text will be changed.

Scriv Preset StylesThat’s the basics of managing and applying styles in Word. Scrivener is similar in that it comes with presets like Word and you can apply them from the format bar. I’ll discuss these in a later post but for now these should help you learn the basics of formatting for e-books. For more information I suggest downloading Mark Coker’s free Smashwords Style Guide.

 

Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. Interested in my writing? Learn more about The Bow of Destiny by clicking on one of the banners on the sidebar.

IMG_4154-EditAbout the Author

P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.

Sign-up to receive my free ebooks today.

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