Formatting and output question

Newbie question- with two parts. I am writing a book that now I am ready to start the exporting process. I am wondering two things:

  1. When do you suggest that a user uses MS Word export versus MultiMarkDown to LaTex?

My book is non-fiction, will be about 200 pages, some graphs, but no mathematical formatting.

  1. With that question- if your answer is MS Word because of the simple needs that I have- how do I set my headers the right format in Scriverner so that it just exports easily so that I can easily build a Table of Contents in Word (and I do not have to reset the layout each time upon exporting)?

Seems that there has to be a simple answer- Just wondering- I have not been able to figure these two questions out alone.


One thing, you say you are ready to start the export process. Something that is going to impact your choice here is: How have you formatted your book so far, in Scrivener? Have you been using the bold and italics functions, is everything in the Binder set up to match a TOC? Switching to MMD may be an arduous task, depending upon how much you’ve already got in rich text format.

That aside, I would argue that (once you have LaTeX+MMD set up, and assuming that isn’t a monumental task to do in the first place), for simple needs it is actually a better workflow. If you you are fine with the way the memoir book output looks, and do not need to do any tweaking to the appearance, it is much, much faster to go about generating a finished copy than the Word route—because of the issue you brought up with there not being a TOC, and everything is just formatting instead of semantic styling. 99% of all that gets handled automatically with the S.MMD+LaTeX path, and potentially 100% in some cases.

But, leave the confines of the default class settings, and then it is probably easier to go with Word for most things, because then you are dealing with a “normal” application, rather than stylesheets, macros, and XSLT customisations. Depends on you though, for once you do get everything set up the way you like it, generating iterations from Scrivener is once again a five minute process. It largely depends on whether LaTeX customisation takes you weeks or a few hours.

Finally, do some searching on the forums for threads on when to go MMD, if ever. There has been volumes written on the topic. You might come across some detail that makes or breaks the deal for you.

I dunno totally- given it is my first time. For fun, I have exported to Word to see how it looks (and to movtivate me to go farther… My head hurts. :slight_smile: )

I have been using folders for chapters, I have a number of cards in each one. I have been using bold for chapter and section headings. I have been using italics for quotes and emphasis. It all looks fine when exported to Word, although I have not figured out how to alter the header settings in Scriverner to then export to the right heading settings in Word (is that possible?)

I did try MMD export to LaTex initially. I kept on getting errors- so I punted and just wrote more thinking that I would figure it out at some point when I was done with the writing (I am finding that writing requires more focused time for me then coding use to, or tearing apart tech stuff does now).

My biggest concern with going through multiple iterations is having a document that I can share with others that are going to give me feedback- I would like to be able to keep the edit cycles tight- where I can have a simple way to get stuff out the door (including the layout). Based on what you say- that sounds like something for MMD to LaTex? Or MMD to something else?


I just tried LaTex output- and was able to figure out what the errors were (i am using 1.08 beta… either the beta helped me find the errors faster, or perhaps the coffee i am drinking today is stronger).

I got a TeX file out, but I do not know how to process it. I do have the LaTeX package loaded on my mac, and I am able to open the file (just don’t know how to take it from there… )

If you think that LaTex is seriously better for doing tight iterations, then I will go down that route. I have no love lost for Word. All I want to do is be able to get stuff out the door and get feedback quick to do tight iterations on the book.

Thanks for the suggestion- I had not tried debugging my file since I switched over to the beta.

What format is easiest for your reviewers? And how many hoops are they willing to jump through on your behalf? No matter how much you love LaTex, if your reviewers won’t even look at a document that isn’t Word, you may be stuck.


I have interacted with the main guy in Word in the past- although I figured that PDF might work too, although a little harder to type udpates on top of it.

Thanks for the question.

By the way, based on the new version (1.08 beta) I was able to quickly debug the MMD to LaTeX bug that I was previously having. Thanks to y’all pushing me a bit.

  • one question- is there an easy way of keeping those headings into Word? I see it working in LaTeX now, but still no idea of how to do it in Word (if this is easier for my reviewers).