I am trying to create a simple name index for a book. I started by importing a csv file of a list of names so that I have Topics in the indexing panel. I see there is a button on the panel to "Generate Index," but when I click on it all it produces is an index with one page for the first topic. I have yet to find an explanation in the documentation of what Generate Index is supposed to do, but I have found several discussions of scripts for creating indexes. Do I have to use a script to generate an index for a list of topics?
An index has to be generated from markers placed in the document. That is, you have to find your index point and add a marker there; the menu allows you to do many sophisticated things such as rewrite the actual index tag, change its sorting order, assign a level, etc. You can pre-load a topic list, and that's one step in a pro approach, but nothing will automatically find the index instances.
Once those markers are placed, "Generate Index" will do just that, find all the markers and assemble them into a sorted list with page numbers.
There are ways to index using various search lists and the like, but none are integral to InDesign (at least, as far as I know; there may be features I have not yet needed to use since the last time I indexed a book).
Proper indexing is a much more than just tagging keywords, too. It should take the reader to "concept" and "topic" locations as well as to instances of terms and names.
Thanks. This is very helpful.
Here is an explanation from InDesign's online help on how and why to import a list of topics, and how to go forward from there. Please note that the list of topics is just the starting point, as per @James Gifford—NitroPress's response and detailed below, you will still need to add the index entries. The Generate Index command compiles an alphabetical list of index entries. Until you add the entries, there isn't anything to generate.
You can create or import a list of topics to use as a starting point when creating index entries. Later, when you add entries to the index, you can select topics from the topic list (instead of typing them each time) to ensure that information is indexed consistently throughout your document or book.
You create and edit a topic list using the Index panel in Topic mode. Note that Topic mode displays topics only; to preview index entries, with their associated page numbers and cross-references, use Reference mode instead.
Topics in the topic list appear in the New Page Reference dialog box as well. To create an index entry, simply select a topic and then associate it with a page or cross-reference. Unused topics (those without page or cross-references) are excluded when you generate an index.
Creating a topic list before you add index entries is optional. Each time you create an index entry, its topic is automatically added to the topic list for future use.
James Gifford said: "…but nothing will automatically find the index instances."
read through Peter Kahrel's descriptions of scripts he built around working with Indexes and Concordances.
You may find the right tool to assist you:
( Adobe Community Professional )
Ah, scripts. I always forget those. 🙂
But indexing is still more than a keyword search. I don't know of any automated solution that does a proper job. If the OP's need is just that name search, though, a list plus script would probably achieve it.
Yes, thanks. I had seen of Kahrel's scripts and intended to work through them if I had to. Since all I want to do is a simple index of people whose names occur in the text, I suspect I can do it with a simpler script than these, but I'll see...