Author Topic: Help with formatting an old manuscript.  (Read 373 times)

Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« on: May 02, 2021, 01:27:50 AM »
I resurrected an old manuscript and the formatting is all over the place now that I'm using W10  :icon_rolleyes:. I can't get the paragraphs right and words flow into each other. I think I should clear all formatting and start again. But will this clear punctuation as well  :eek: How do you clear all formatting?
Thanks in advance  :)
 

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TimothyEllis

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2021, 01:34:56 AM »
I resurrected an old manuscript and the formatting is all over the place now that I'm using W10  :icon_rolleyes:. I can't get the paragraphs right and words flow into each other. I think I should clear all formatting and start again. But will this clear punctuation as well  :eek: How do you clear all formatting?
Thanks in advance  :)

The best way is copy the whole thing, and paste it into notepad. That removes everything.

Prepare a new book with all formatting you want in Normal and Heading1 styles, and then copy from notepad, and past it in.

You may have to highlight and hit normal for each chapter, and you will need to re-highlight the chapter headings and hit heading1.

But it doesn't take all that long to do a novel length.
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notthatamanda

Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2021, 01:53:11 AM »
Yeah you have to nuke it like Tim said. You won't lose the punctuation. .," are characters to notepad and will be fine.

 

Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2021, 02:02:39 AM »
I resurrected an old manuscript and the formatting is all over the place now that I'm using W10  :icon_rolleyes:. I can't get the paragraphs right and words flow into each other. I think I should clear all formatting and start again. But will this clear punctuation as well  :eek: How do you clear all formatting?
Thanks in advance  :)

The best way is copy the whole thing, and paste it into notepad. That removes everything.

Prepare a new book with all formatting you want in Normal and Heading1 styles, and then copy from notepad, and past it in.

You may have to highlight and hit normal for each chapter, and you will need to re-highlight the chapter headings and hit heading1.

But it doesn't take all that long to do a novel length.

Thanks so much. It's a children's book, about 11000 words, so isn't too long. I even considered typing it all out again.  :icon_rolleyes:

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Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2021, 02:03:35 AM »
Yeah you have to nuke it like Tim said. You won't lose the punctuation. .," are characters to notepad and will be fine.

Thanks.  :) I did worry about losing the punctuation.

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RPatton

Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2021, 04:59:51 AM »
If you have calibre (and this is for an epub), you can convert the epub into an rtf file and import the rtf file. It's not as extreme as nuking and sometimes will clean up any problems. (I recently did this with the book I am working on for Radish and all the formatting came through, I had to fix a few things, like indents, but overall, it wasn't nearly as daunting as I initially thought it would be.)
 

Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2021, 06:22:46 PM »
If you have calibre (and this is for an epub), you can convert the epub into an rtf file and import the rtf file. It's not as extreme as nuking and sometimes will clean up any problems. (I recently did this with the book I am working on for Radish and all the formatting came through, I had to fix a few things, like indents, but overall, it wasn't nearly as daunting as I initially thought it would be.)

Thanks  :). I am picking up the courage to do it. I've forgotten how to make automatic paragraph indents. There are so many more options since I first set up this book  :icon_rolleyes:

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notthatamanda

Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2021, 08:11:13 PM »
Here's the styles guide Mark from Smashwords did:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/52/

Good luck.
 
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Jan Hurst-Nicholson

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2021, 11:33:08 PM »
Here's the styles guide Mark from Smashwords did:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/52/

Good luck.

Thanks so much.  :Tup2: This is going to be very useful. I feel like a newbie, even after publishing 11 books  :icon_rolleyes:

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Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2021, 05:06:55 AM »
I'd save it as a text file (.txt) and then save that file as .doc. Then I'd reassign styles and formatting (italics, bold) to the new raw .doc file.
     
 
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cecilia_writer

Re: Help with formatting an old manuscript.
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2021, 07:01:26 PM »
I think the method Tim suggests is the best option. If you get a new document set up with the paragraph settings etc the way you want, then the text should sort itself out like magic when you paste it in from Notepad. I've done this kind of thing when incorporating text  I've written on my tablet  into my main document and it works really well.
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