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Organise the document any way is convenient for you. The only restriction is on the TOC. It is a generated table, as a consequence it needs visibility on the whole document so that all headings are collected. Therefore, you should put its placeholder/generation directive, i.e. the Insert>TOC & Indexes>TOC & Indexes command in the master document itself.

To avoid confusion in the future as to what your master document is about, I recommend that your title page, at least is part of the master document. Unless you use a "standard" copyright page shared between several documents, write it also in the master document. The dedication page is also short and specific to a document, there no definite advantage to have it in a separate document.

To summarise, the master document will contain:

  1. Title page
  2. Copyright or "Insert" Copyright document
  3. Dedication
  4. TOC
  5. "Insert" chapter 1 document


N. "Insert" chapter N document

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