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I have been struggling to write a book on my 14 years research. I have used Microsoft Word exclusively, but I have a problem that the book uses lots of pictures, sometimes six per page and this is where I cannot seem to have a stable document. I place the pictures in a Text Box as recommended by Microsoft. Having placed these text boxes relative to the text I find either that the pictures will not stay where they are placed or having closed the file and then re-opened the file, the text boxes are not in the correct place.

What DTP should I use as Microsoft Word does not seem to be appropriate.

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In Microsoft Word, use tables instead of text boxes. The tables won't bounce around the page the way text boxes will. You can just create a one-row, one-column table to hold the picture and (if there is one) the caption. You can also make a table with six cells to hold six pictures.

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It likely depends on the field you are in and the amount of work and money you want to put into learning a new tool if you have only used Microsoft Word so far for this kind of task.

For example in the technical and scientific community you normally find a lot of fans of LaTex, which is free for anyone to use and offers incredible help with formulae. Have a quick look at the Introduction to LaTex to see if this is the kind of tool you need. If you need any help with it there is even a dedicated TeX.SE sister site that can help you with all sorts of problems for example if you need help with the Optimal arrangement of pictures/boxes in a page. There is also a lot of other information out there, for example Positioning images and tables.

Another tool that you will see recommended on this site quite often is Scrivener. I haven't used it so far, but apparently many writers often use it. It's a bit pricy though with $45 for the full version and there seems to be less information out there. For example by searching for scrivener pictures is:q I could only find this on Writing.SE: How to work with in-text markup for figures and captions in Scrivener?.

As you mentioned DTP, which according to Wikipedia often refers to software like Adobe InDesign (which is really expensive) I want to say that you can find help for such professional layouting tools on our sister site GraphicDesign.SE, who even have a tag about adobe-indesign who can help you with all sorts of very specific image problems in InDesign. I have never used this though, so take a look around the test version before thinking about buying and using this product.

  • Scrivener is a word-processing program. It is only for writing. It's not meant for layout. – Lauren Ipsum Mar 12 at 10:13

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