When you set off on a book-length project, placing it all in a single document can quickly get clumsy. It’s much easier to assemble the book from a collection of individual files, each representing, perhaps, a chapter.
For many versions, Indesign lacked this ability, though many older and lesser programs had it. That’s all in the past, though. Now, you can produce chapters or other divisions as individual files, then asemble them all into a book places all these files in order. Indesign also makes sure you can apply consistent styles to each of the component files. You also can arrange to have page numbers run consecutively throughout the book and include them in an overall index and table of contents.
Set up the book file
A book file looks like a book file because, mainly, that’s what it is. In it, you assemble a list of the individual files hold indivudual chapters or other sections. Once they are inserted into the book file, they combine to create the finished book.
1. Create the file
From the main menu, select File > New > Book.
2. Add existing documents to the file.
In the row of symbols at the bottom of the panel, click on the Plus sign.
Note: You also can drag files into the book panel from other displays such as the Mac Finder or the Windows Explorer.
The files open one at a time; as you re-save them, they appear in the book panel. If they’ve been given page numbers, these also appear in the display.
Note: One or more of these files might also display a yellow triangular symbol, which indicates that document has been edited outside the book file. To avoid or correct these, open the files, when necessary, by double-clicking on them inside the book panel.
3. Place the files in order.
The files appear in alphabetical order, which probably is not the way you want them to appear in the book. You can drag the files up and down to place them in the order you want.
Click on the symbol in the upper right-hand corner of the panel to open the Book menu. It includes similar options to those you would use to save other types of files.
Note: You also can use this menu to remove or replace documents in the book.
Synchronize document styles
When you assemble a collection of documents like the chapters in a book, you probably take care that they are all alike in style and formatting. Nevertheless, a few exceptions are likely to slip in.
Synchronizing the book lets you select one chapter to serve as a model, then ensure that all the other files match that example.
1. Select items to synchronize.
Open the Book Panel menu, and select Synchronize Options. The Synchronize Options dialog box presents a variety of characteristics you may want to synchonize. You can check or oncheck those you want.
Normally, the preselected options are good choices, particularly those under Styles and Swatches. Select Master Pages if you want to make sure common elements like running headers are consistent from document to document. If you want to preserve differing master pages, leave this item unchecked. Make any changes you’d like; then click on Synchronize.
2. Select a model document.
In the book panel, identify the document you want to use as a model. Click on the empty box to the left of the document name. A symbol appears in the box to indicate this is the chosen item.
3. Select the files to be synchronized.
You can select specific files to be synchronized. If you select no files, all are synchronized.
Be safe: If you want to synchronize all the files, scroll to the bottom of the file list, and click on the blank area just below the document names. This ensures that you haven’t selected a file or two by mistake.
4. Finish the job.
Open the book panel menu, and select Synchronize Book. Any style differences between documents are changed to match the model.
As you add documents to the book, Indesign automatically assigns page numbers. These appear in the right-hand column of the book panel. Though the process is fairly automatic, you can change the standard numbering scheme, both for the overall book and for individual chapters.
Set book options
Open the book panel menu, and select Book Page Numbering Options. Here, you can set the overall pattern of page numbering to be used throughout the book.
Generally, you’ll want to continue the numbering from one document to the next. If you prefer, you can start on odd or even pages. In that case, you might want to check Insert Blank Page when needed to start a chapter on the designated page. You can uncheck Automatically Update Page & Section Numbers if you’d rather set the numbering individually for each chapter.
Set chapter options
You might want some chapters to depart from the overall numbering scheme. For example, you might want to number the introductory pages with small roman numerals, then apply more conventional numbering to the body of the book.
1. Open the chapter.
In the book panel, double-click on any chapter’s page numbers. The chapter opens, and you see a list of numbering options for that chapter.
2. Adjust the subsequent numbers.
This book now shows the table of contents pages numbered i through iv and the next chapter starting on page 5. You might prever that it start fresh with page 1.
The chapter is renumbered, and all the subsequent page numbers are adjusted as well.