[scribus] Starting with Scribus

Murray Strome wmstrome at yahoo.com
Tue Jul 7 20:15:52 CEST 2009

When I started using Scribus, I was a complete novice as well. I had barely even heard of the term "DeskTop Publishing", and certainly knew nothing about Scribus.  The book: "Scribus: The Official Manual" is excellent, but it a LONG time to get it after I ordered it. 

I found the most helpful way to get started was to assist writing a new Tutorial, which can be found at:


The tutorial itself is in OpenOffice format, and all the working files are located at this site. There are two versions: A4 for European (and Asian?) users, and US Letter for Canadians and Americans (and perhaps others).

I have been using Scribus successfully for over a year now, and although I am no expert, I have found it to be a very powerful tool. I have used it to produce quarterly newsletters, greeting cards, posters, and course participants manuals.  

For me, perhaps the biggest challenge was in developing a completely new mindset -- I had primarily used Office software like Word, WordPerfect, OpenOffice, etc. to produce such documents. I still do most of my initial text editing with OpenOffice, but the final stages are done with Scribus now.  The most important benefit (for me) is that, with Scribus, images and other objects stay where they are supposed to be!

My biggest problems with Scribus are that it is slow, it does not have a good built-in spell checker, and it has some technical flaws which take me by surprise, at times (I have always found a way to work around these without too much trouble).

This E-mail list is populated by a large community of VERY helpful people. When I started, I was subscribed to the full list and really appreciated the rapid, polite and helpful responses to my naive questions.  After becoming a bit more adept at using the software, I now only subscribe to the digest as I no longer need the rapid feedback.  

There few user lists that are as active and helpful as this one.

Good luck in your efforts!


Saturday, July 4, 2009 6:14 AM
"Blue Beehive" <alan at bluebeehive.com> wrote:

Thank you for you advice John. I will buy the book you suggested as I am sure it will be a great help.

I wrote the original message I have found the on line tutorial that you
recommend and am beginning to work through it. I'm glad that I read all
of the help files first though. It has helped make a bit of sense to
what the tutorial is instructing me to do. The three things together,
Help files, tutorial and Pete Masterson's book will put it all in place
for me - says me confidently.

I followed your advice on
Ghostscript as well. Un-installed Scribus then started again in the
proper order. All is working well thank you.

One final question
if I may although it is off topic. I have looked at forums before and
can see how to reply to a post in them but I am a more than little lost
with this mailing list. Can't seem to find how to respond to an entry.
I guess that the way I have done this reply is wrong.

receiving replies is odd. My 'preferences' are set to receive all but I
see in the digest that someone else has responded to my question
although I didn't receive it as an individual mail.

The open source world is full of wonders to this old Windows user.

Many thanks for your help and guidance

Alan Taylor

John Culleton wrote:
> On Thursday 02 July 2009 04:58:08 am Blue Beehive wrote:
>> OK. I have downloaded and installed Scribus and started to read
>> the documentation (splendid stuff Peter). I am a Windows user who
>> has never done any DTP before, or anything else really, only
>> business accounts (package), the occasional spreadsheet  and the
>> usual emails. I have foolishly agreed to prepare and publish our
>> village mag - 32 double sided A4 pages and around 800 copies per
>> run) and thought Scribus hits the button. Now here is the BUT. I
>> now find that I also now have to have GhostScript and Ghostscript
>> viewer, GIMP and I don't know what else, and have got to learn
>> about PS, PDF and EPS files together with typography, fonts,
>> colour manipulation and what seems like a myriad of other things.
>> My question is simple. Where do I start? Which comes first in the
>> learning curve. Scribus, the other programs, terminology, the
>> file types? I am surrounded, nay buried, in 'new stuff'. So much
>> so that I have lost all sense or direction and have no idea where
>> the door is. Can anybody point to it. -- Please!
>> Alan
You should load Ghostscript first, then Scribus.  Gimp is nice but not
essential for your app.  I would look up the file types on wikipedia. 
For a readable introduction to the publishing process, not Scribus
specific, I would buy Pete Masterson's book
> "Book Design and
Production." It is an outstanding introduction to the overall process,
even  though it is not Scribus specific.
> There is also an excellent tutorial online that covers the main points of using Scribus in a very readable manner.  
> The Scribus manual is comprehensive, but a bit overwhelming for the absolute beginner. John Culleton
> Create Book Covers with Scribus/e-book $5.95
> http://www.booklocker.com/books/4055.html

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