Creating a PDF eBook – First Experience


Yesterday I created a template for my photo book in Scribus. The whole process is rather new to me. I worked with PageMaker and Quark in the late eighties before moving and miraculously it was easy to retrieve some of my knowledge safely tucked away in my memory.

I decided to create a document that, with some minor modifications, could be printed. At the moment I have no idea what the impact will be on the PDF file size but I’ll deal with that at the right moment.

Yesterday in the early evening I fell asleep on my couch. Sweetheart woke me up at 20:30 or so for our daily phone call. She was exhausted too and after hanging up, half an hour later, I went to bed.

This Saturday morning I woke up early and after a coffee I created a folder with my Hipstamatic images and launched Lightroom. Half an hour later I had enough 5-star images to work with.

The got the preset treatment with following settings:
Highlights -100
Shadows +100
Clarity +10
Sharpness +90 and masked out so only the edges are affected.

Then I choose the white and black point on every image and made some minor adjustments, lowering in some cases the values of the preset.

Every image was sent to Photoshop for some extra tweaking like contrast, some dodging and/or burning. I saved every image at 220 DPI.

In Scribus I defined a 15 x 15 cm document and did not touch any other setting.

The online manual is pretty clear and I did find everything I needed to know fast.

I made the book cover in Photoshop and then started adding the images in 12 x 12 cm picture frames and each of them got a distinct name so I could easily generate a table of contents.

The About and Copyright page were easily created and written and the text frames renamed accordingly.

After putting it all together I exported the eBook to an Adobe Acrobat 5 compatible file. Compression Quality was maximum, Compression Method Automatic and Maximum Image Resolution 96 dpi. In the Viewer tab I found Single Page Layout to give the best viewing experience.

Scribus checked the document and I had to fix one error. Then a 6 Mb. PDF file was generated.

I am happy with the result and I’ll be showing the finished eBook to Sweetheart. After taking in account her remarks I’ll finish the book and publish it. Almost forgot, I still have to write an introduction.

This is the front cover I made and it is of course still subject to changes.

eBook cover
eBook cover

 

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