I want to create a book and publish it later with an ondemand book printing provider.

I read that Libreoffice 3.4 and 3.5 have some more DTP features but dont know if I should take Scribus or Libreoffice for creating the PDFs.

I want to create single PDF files and give them to the sample readers for feedback and corrections.

Has Scribus a better understanding of DTP and makes a better use of the concepts or is Libreoffice so far now, that it is even better?

  • 1
    If this is a technical book (e.g. formulas, diagrams, charts etc...) I recommend to take a look at using LaTeX and following those suggestions from the TeX SE.
    – Renan
    Commented Apr 12, 2012 at 18:28
  • No, its not technical =)
    – user81245
    Commented Apr 12, 2012 at 18:31
  • 1
    Then LaTeX is overkill. :)
    – Renan
    Commented Apr 12, 2012 at 18:52
  • 1
    For this purpose, yes. But used it often for my math presentations and essays =)
    – user81245
    Commented Apr 12, 2012 at 18:55

1 Answer 1


Book = text (+ images) + layout.

If there is only text and if its not an issue to position precisely your text then LibreOffice should be fine. If you want to mix text and images, and have them precisely related and precisely laid out in each page, then Scribus will be better.

Its better to have the text 99% ready before beginning the layout. I usually use LibreOffice for linear text editing. For this text work, I don't want images and layout to interfere with work on the pure text. When the text is almost ready, I pour it into Scribus along with the images and there begins the layout with precise positioning and graphical design.

Same for your corrections : If you want your reader to check the quality of the text, then LibreOffice is the tool. If you know your text is ready and you want your reader to check the quality of the book when it is almost ready to print (including, or not, layout check), then Scribus is the way to go ; even when the layout is not complex, because Scribus produces the pro PDFs that will fit your printer's technical expectations.

  • I've no problem with this answer and I've seen similar before, but I'm hard pressed to think of why coexistence of images and text would (still?) be an issue in Writer. I'm sure a DTP tool can give more control, but Writer already provides a significant amount of control with regard to image positioning w.r.t. a page, paragraph or character and text flow around an image. That said, the only DTP tool I used was Latex (and that was way back), so I'm probably a non-demanding user. Wrote a few (technical) books in Writer, though. Not perfect by any measure, but does the job. Commented Jan 27, 2017 at 13:57
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    The issue with using Writer (or MSWord for that matter) as a DTP tool is mainly with small text changes that sometime scramble the layout, and with unexpected layout changes that happen when you open the same document on another computer or device. With scribus, you can expect 100% reproducible layouts.
    – JLuc
    Commented Jun 30, 2019 at 13:03
  • Not only that, I just tried to see if LO Writer (7.4) was yet up to the task of "somewhat fancy" headers (ie, stick icon here, add some decorative lines around the chapter name. I still think it's possible, but it was enough of an exercise in pain I ran away screaming. Best to use DTP tools for DTP tasks.
    – knghtbrd
    Commented Jan 30, 2023 at 15:20

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