Creating Print On Demand Interiors and Covers Using Scribus Part 3

I have taken a few weeks to document all the steps required to use Scribus to layout the interior and cover for Print on Demand (POD) PDF files and thought about publishing it.

I decided to first publish on this blog, because I will hopefully get good feedback on missed steps or other suggestions from others who are also preparing their stories for POD publication or creating bookmarks or whatever.

If I work on approximately 5 pages each blog, it will take 8 blog posts or more  to get it all up.

If you missed Part 1 read it first, then Part 2.

Part 3


The Main Window


The basics of Scribus is to set up Master Pages (document templates) that include text frames, paragraph styles and text filters, image frames and much more that give a consistent look to imported text. Once the Master Pages are set up, they can be imported into other documents from within the current document.

Create a new document

If you haven’t done so already, locate the Scribus icon and double click to open, or locate Scribus in your Start => Programs list to launch Scribus

Click on the menu File => New to open the New Document window if it is not already opened.

First, I set the default unit to Inches (in). If you work in centimetres or millimetres or points, set them first.

I select the Double Sided Page icon and set the width (6”) and height (9”) for my page size.

Recap: for a Novel size of 6 x 9 Inches I need:

6 x 9” Size Margins Text Boxes
Top .82” Header .3” by page width
Bottom .75” Footer .25” by page width
Inside .875”
Outside .5”

I set the Inside Margin to .875” and the Outside Margin to .5”.

I set the Top Margin to .82” and Bottom Margin to .75”.

First page is set to Right Page for novels.

Also note that the last page of your novel is always Left. If you finish your layout and realise it ends on the right hand side, then just add another blank page on the left.

Next I check the box for Automatic Text Frame and set Columns to 1 and Gap to 0. Think of using one column or two columns as in many non fiction manuals. In this case I only want one column (text box) per page.

I don’t need to check the box Show Document Settings after Creation, because I can open the settings from the menu at any time by clicking File => Document Setup.

I can select 1 page or more than 1 pages. I select 3 pages so when the pages are displayed I can check whether the inner and outer margins are correct.

Once I confirm the settings are correct I click OK. The New Document window closes and 3 pages are displayed in the main area below the menus and short cut icons.

What I now have is three pages with one text box set within the margins selected in the New Document window. The first page is on the right, and the next two pages display side by side.

These are the pages required for the front matter and the back matter.


Create a new document by clicking on File => New

  1. Select Double Sided icon.
  2. Set your Default unit.
  3. Set your book size in Width and Height.
  4. Set Number of Pages to 3.
  5. Check the box for Automatic Text Frame
  6. Set Columns to 1 and Gap to 0
  7. Leave Size as Custom, and Orientation as Portrait.
  8. Set your Margin Guides as per your calculations and CreateSpace recommendations.
  9. Click OK button.
  10. Confirm 3 pages are displaying in the main area, and the pages start on the right hand side. If not repeat the

You do not need to set Bleeds for interiors unless you are adding photos or images and you plan on them extending over the margins.

In Part 4 you will create master pages.


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