[scribus] Templates vs. master pages vs. (page styles)?

David Gessel gessel at blackrosetech.com
Wed Sep 16 13:01:36 UTC 2020

Dear Scribus list:

I apologize for the newbie question, but I've been trying to transition work from FrameMaker (used since version 1 on the NeXT in 1989) to open source and Scribus has some lovely capabilities, including nicely designed support for Font Features in the dev release that Frame still does not have even in the 2019 version.

I fully admit I'm coming to Scribus with preconceptions of workflow that don't entirely align, so what I'd like to do may just be outside the use cases for the package or maybe I'm just ignorantly missing the obvious.

I'd like to be able to define a page format - optimally multiple - that I can pre-design and assign to a document and then apply as editable.  I think I've exhausted the obvious mechanisms, I apologize for the enumeration of the obvious but to save back and forth:

It seems master pages are specifically intended for non-editable elements, what might be called "background" or "header and footer" (in less flexible environments).  This is wonderful and useful, but not what I'm looking for.

It seems Templates are used to define entire document designs, absent content.  This is also great for fixed length, pre-designed documents.  A powerful feature, to be sure, but also not quite what I'm looking for in that I can't define a single page template, then create a new document and "add page" and have that template applied.  Indeed, it seems the only way to apply the template is to copy paste the template structure to the next page, a somewhat plausible work flow if one carefully keeps a content free copy to the side.

If I look through the interface, where I would expect to find it would be in the Style Manager under "Page Styles," if such a thing existed.  I would expect construction of page styles to be similar to construction of and management of "master pages." I'd think it might include something like a mechanism for specifying "next page style" and or "next page even/next page odd" and auto-connect like-named text flows, auto-adding pages as text frames are filled.

As an aside, for the convenience of combined content creator/page designers, I've found "Next Paragraph Tag" or "Next Style" definitions helpful as might be found when defining a "paragraph style."

Is there a way to define the Column and Text Distance in a paragraph style?

The new table tool seems like a step in the right direction and helpful - but in the dev version I don't seem to be able to "ungroup" the table to apply formatting.  I'd think I could define a "table text" paragraph style and a "table header" paragraph style (including column and text offset distances) and then multi-select and apply, but I haven't figured out how to do that.

I apologize for the newbie questions.  I've read through the documentation but may have missed some obvious answers.


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