I was wondering if somebody could share their experience on this topic: my wife is a foreign language teacher ( Spanish) and she is planning to write a textbook and/or teacher guides. So she asked me to research good software for this purpose. I stumbled upon Scrivener, which seems to be pretty good compared to other stuff I’ve seen so far. However the nature of the textbook requires it too have lot’s of figures, pictures, exercises, etc. From what I could figure out support for this is rudimentary - limited to inserting an image in one spot - no wrapping text, pages split in columns, etc.
I’ve seen some people recommend importing/exporting project to word or pages or even indesign, but they assume that once you are done with project in scrivener - you wouldn’t want to come back.
So the question is: did anyone try to create a textbook using scrivener? Or could someone point me to an alternative software or some sort of workflow that include Scrivener?
Scrivener is, without a doubt, the best place to gather, research, write and organise the text and exercises which will make up a text book. I’ve used it myself for preparing the work book and exercises for distance learning courses. It doesn’t write the text for you, but it does ease the writing process and helps you keep your text well organised.
I use the Multimarkdown to Latex route for the workbook, then cut and paste the exercises from Scrivener into Moodle for the on-line part of the course. I also use Scrivener to track the other on-line resources which accompany each topic.
Nonetheless, Scrivener is not a page layout program, so it you isn’t going to give you the more complex page layouts you describe. However, if there is a publisher involved in the project they will probably only want the basic text, and not the final layouts; a standard compile from Scrivener will be fine.
If the book will be self-published then you will need a program like as Pages, or InDesign to give you more control over the page.