export to pdf/x1a


As I’m sure most of you know, manuscript files sent to IngramSpark (Lightning Source) must be formatted as PDF/X-1a or PDF/X-3. Desktop-ready LibreOffice 6.4 documents appear to meet every requirement Ingram would have unless headers and footer locations inside the text margins would be an issue (I have not asked) only if there was an option to export the finished format file as one of the two PDF formats.

I have seen on the internet that someone thought if the documents are exported as PDF/A that Ingram would accept them. I doubt if this is the case, otherwise it would be well known. One of the solutions that is also presented is to Save your LibreOffice files as some version of a Word document that can be in turn exported in one of the required PDF/X formats. Since I don’t have any M$ software, I didn’t see that as an option. However when I checked the File>Save As option on my iMac (10.13.6) I was surprised at the plethora of Word save-to options available, far more than a neophyte like me would know what to choose. Two file extensions that at least I recognize were .doc and .docx.

Does anyone know if either of those are options that can be used to save-to and then export as a PDF/X? Also would I have to have M$ programs to do this, or is there a way that would be native to my Mac? I still have Pages 09, but it seems too dated to export other that just “PDF” (FYI: it can’t).

I have taken much rougher LibreOffice documents and incorporated them into Scribus and exported fine to Ingram, however for an occasional non-professional user getting the LibreOffice manuscript into Scribus gives me tedious fits. As a matter of fact, being stuck in that process lead me to explore just sending Ingram the LibreOffice file. I would hope that Scribus would begin to organize and update their manuals and reference the way LibreOffice has.


The manual for Ingramspark shows how to create a pdf/x by exporting to Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Distiller, that is, nothing to do with Microsoft, but more expensive. It looks like Scribus might be your best option.

A quick search on the interweb brought up one pdf/x converter for Windows, I haven’t tried it or know anything about it apart from the linked page. Cheers, Al