Hello. Here’s my question: Is there an inexpensive word processing program that I can buy that is like Word but not expensive?
I’m new to Scrivener but got started on it a few weeks ago. I’m writing my first book. I have run into a snag when I try to import a 10-page pdf file into the Editor because it shows up as a separate link and I need it to be part of the actual text.
I read on this forum that the best way to resolve that problem is to add it later once you put everything in a word processor. Here’s my question: What word processor should I use? I just bought my MacBook Pro a couple of months ago and never purchased one. I am familiar with Word but don’t like the cost.
Well the cheapest and most Word-like word processor on the Mac is definitely OpenOffice.org/NeoOffice/LibreOffice (take your pick, they are all versions of the same thing). These’ll only cost you the time it takes to download them and the amount of hair you’ll pull out of your head in using them. They aren’t all like most Mac programs as they are cross-platform, feature laden beasts. But, if you need a powerful word processor on the cheap, that’s what they are.
But, have you thought of approaching this from another angle? Tacking a PDF onto the end of another document isn’t easy to do (either technically or conceptually) because PDFs are pre-formatted. The result will nearly always look awkward as fonts will change, page numbers will suddenly revert, and so on. Why not just extract the text out of this PDF, liberate it, and drop it into Scrivener?
Dear Amber v.
That last option you suggest of abastracting and liberating the text out of my pdf file sounds great! But how do I do it?
Just a slight correction. Now it costs a minimum of $10 donation (each year) to get NeoOffice for download. I have supported it in the past, but I find Symphony (www-03.ibm.com/software/lotus/sy … e.nsf/home IBM’s version of OpenOffice) is stable and does most of what I want.
Another option is Nisus Writer Pro (nisus.com). Powerful, but easy to learn and it handles .rtf files natively. Or if that is too high ($79 or family pack $99), then consider Nisus Writer Express for ($49 or $79 Family pack)
The “Easiest” way may be just to copy and paste the text. Should work okay with most text based PDFs.
Open the PDF in Preview
Cmd-a to select everything.
Cmd-c to copy
Move to scrivener
Cmd-v to paste (Or though I would probably right click and select “Paste and Match Style” to strip out rogue formatting)
If your PDFs have the text stored as embedded images (Possible but hopefully unlikely) then you’re in for some harder work.
Copy and paste is often good enough, though some PDFs can be more problematic than others. Some do not form paragraphs into single lines, so you end up with hard breaks on the end of every wrapped line. Other conditions, such as text-as-graphics and copy protected text (where six or so junk characters are invisibly crammed in between each visible letter) are going to be the worst.
Here is a blog post detailing some online services that can do text extraction:
techlogg.blogspot.com/2008/03/ex … files.html
Some will even handle PDF -> RTF, which would be good for Scrivener. Others perform OCR to make sure text comes together in logical sequences, even if they are literally out of order within the PDF code itself. So if one doesn’t work, try another. There are a lot of techniques out there.
Thank you all. These comments have been so helpful. I will try and let you know what works.