Progress report

I laid out SIX chapters today--whoo! Yeah, it's amazing what I can accomplish when I actually have the time to work on something.

You know, one problem with breaking compound words so that the break separates the two words is that it makes it really confusing when you're trying to figure out which hyphens to keep and which to ditch in a new layout. "Walk-ing" is easy, "Five-Eighths" is easy, but "life-like" or "non-committal"? Those sent me reaching for Webster's.

With this layout, I'm experiementing with using Word more (I know, it's my nemesis, but I try to make it a useful nemesis). One of the problems with Word is that if you take a two-page view (which you need to do to make sure the two blocks of text in a spread are the same length) it assumes that your chapter's first page is on the left-hand side of the spread, which isn't always true. Acrobat doesn't have that problem, so before I'd switch back and forth a lot between the two, which was a pain and really time-consuming.

So I'm trying to use Word's two-page view. When the chapter starts on a right-hand page, I cut the page onto the clipboard while I'm noodling in Word. Then I paste it back into place before I move everything over to Acrobat. That's actually worked fine. The larger problem is that, you know, I'm using Word, which just isn't as reliable as one might like. Word moves lines around and repeats them and pretends that they are someplace they aren't, so even if it looks like everything's going great, I still stop and put the layout into Acrobat every ten pages or so. Otherwise I'll discover things like six missing lines (seriously, six!) on the third page of a 45-page chapter (remember, this is the large print edition, so these chapters are HUGE), and I have to lay out the whole damned thing again.