Well-Formed Document Workflow

Scribe’s XML-First (XML-Always) Publishing Workflow

Scribe’s Well-Formed Document Workflow (WFDW) empowers your editorial and production staff with the best, most intuitive, and up-to-date tools, practices, and processes in the publishing industry. The WFDW utilizes an XML workflow from the outset so that you do not need to apply coding. This allows you to move through the publishing chain while cutting costs and producing fully accessible publications. WFDW implementation includes full training and support, the capacity to customize outputs, and a subscription to online and offline tools.

Convert with Ease

The WFDW simplifies the transition from one publishing stage to another and automates many of the tasks performed by editors and typesetters. The result is a seamless, highly efficient production process. Whether for print or electronic or round-tripping changes for new editions, a single tool—Scribe’s Digital Hub—is used for all conversions, no matter the order.

Control Your Content

By utilizing the WFDW, you have the flexibility of jumping to any stage in the production process with ease so you can maintain control, cut costs, speed production time, and retain an archive of your publications.

Automatically Create PDF or InDesign Files

Once a manuscript is composed in Scribe styles, the WFDW can be used to produce a print-ready PDF or an IDTT file that will automatically flow into InDesign. Whichever process you use, you can create custom designs and additional outputs, all to the highest industry standards.

Improve Typesetting and E-book Development

The WFDW improves your process at every stage. Replacing standard procedures of pulling content into InDesign, our method employs robust IDTT that simplifies and speeds up typesetting. Fully accessible and navigable e-books, featuring automatic linking (tables of contents, notes, and indexes), become a natural outgrowth of print book development.

Tools to Help You Work

A WFDW subscription includes two offline tools: the Scribe Add-In (SAI) and InDesign Tools. Online, the Digital Hub performs the heavy lifting.

The SAI is a Word plug-in that facilitates applying styles and automatically performs many editorial functions. These include cleansing manuscripts of common errors, intelligently applying title case, building style sheets, and flagging problems according to style guides. The SAI’s Index Assistant automates several index creation procedures, like entry formatting and cross-reference checks, and produces an embedded and linked index, ready for both print and electronic publication. The SAI also allows you to input alternate text for images for readers with disabilities that limit access to print so that your book is fully accessible. The SAI aids communication among all involved in the process, even authors.

Scribe’s InDesign Tools facilitate typesetting best practices and assist with the many nuances of the craft, such as adding page ranges in notes sections’ running heads, balancing lines, renumbering footnotes or endnotes, and placing images. The tools enable clean exports to XML and e-book formats, prepare documents for accessibility, and enable custom settings.

The Digital Hub is our online conversion center, converting publications from one format to another. It features customizable style sheets, an ePub rezipper, alt-text/accessibility capacity, and automatic print articulation (spacing for proper typography).

One Language

Scribe Markup Language (ScML) is a robust, comprehensive XML schema natively designed for publishing. Because it is mapped to standard styles and employs intuitive nomenclature, it’s also easy to learn. From developmental editing through e-book production, everyone involved speaks the same language. The advantages are clarity and consistency in work, fewer errors, and a streamlined publication process. This leads to better publications.

Fast-Track to E-books/Galleys

Whether preparing for print, electronic, or round-tripping, a single point—Scribe’s Digital Hub—is used for all conversions.

Single Flow, Multiple Outputs

The WFDW allows you to work in a single stream, yet you can create output file types at any stage, publishing print first, electronic first, or in any combination. Alter publications in one place, and the changes are preserved in every subsequent form. The WFDW allows for automated outputs of IDTT, fully accessible ePub, HTML, XML, PDF, or round-tripped Word files.


Scribe Markup Language (ScML) documents are future-proofed because the underlying XML is a robust, universal method for archiving publications. ScML is a living standard and therefore evolves with publishers’ needs. With or without the WFDW, compatibility is never an issue. This isn’t true with formats like Microsoft Word and Adobe InDesign. These proprietary formats—along with PDF, ePub, and even HTML—are poor repositories for archiving books. With the WFDW, you’ll never be stuck with outdated formats and can take full advantage of future book technologies.

Schedule a Demonstration

See why the WFDW is the leading XML workflow. Fill in this form, and a Scribe staff member will contact you to schedule a demonstration of the WFDW.