XML::Grammar::Fiction - CPAN distribution implementing an XML grammar and a lightweight markup language for stories, novels and other fiction.
XML::Grammar::Fiction is a CPAN distribution that facilitates writing prose fiction (= stories, novels, novellas, etc.). What it does is:
The best way to use it non-programatically is using XML::Grammar::Fiction::App::FromProto, XML::Grammar::Fiction::App::ToDocBook and XML::Grammar::Fiction::App::ToHTML, which are modules implementing command line applications for their processing.
In order to be able to share the common code and functionality more easily, then XML::Grammar::Screenplay, which provides similar XML grammar and text-based markup language for writing screenplays, is now included in this CPAN distribution, and you can refer to its documentation as well: XML::Grammar::Screenplay .
The rest of this page will document the syntax of the custom textual format.
Sections are placed in XML-like tags of
</section> or abbreviated as
Opening tags in the format may have attributes whose keys are plaintext and whose values are surrounded by double quotes.
(Single-quotes are not supported).
The section tag must have an
id attribute (for anchors,
etc.) and could contain an optional (but highly recommended)
If the title is not specified,
it will default to the ID.
Sections may be nested.
Text is any of:
Supported tags are
<b> for bold text,
<i> for italic text.
The text format supports SGML-like entities such as
" and all other entities that are supported by HTML::Entities.
The following characters can start a regular paragraph:
" (double quotes),
' (single quotes),
XML/SGML entities are also supported at the start.
All other characters are reserved for special markup in the future.
If you need to use them at the beginning of the paragraph you can escape them with a backslash (
\) or their SGML/XML entity (e.g:
These are not delimited by anything - just a paragraph of text not containing an empty line.
If a paragraph starts with a Plus sign (
+ ) then it is immediately expected to be followed by a styling tag (as opposed to a
This is an ordered list with <li>s, similar to its purpose in XHTML.
An unordered list.
<body id="index" lang="en-UK"> <title>David vs. Goliath - Part I</title> <s id="top"> <title>The Top Section</title> <!-- David has Green hair here --> King <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David">David</a> and Goliath were standing by each other. David said unto Goliath: “I will shoot you. I <b>swear</b> I will” <s id="goliath"> <title>Goliath's Response</title> <!-- Goliath has to reply to that. --> Goliath was not amused. He said to David: “Oh, really. <i>David</i>, the red-headed!”. </s> </s> </body>
Examples can be found in the
t/data directory, and here:
I (= Shlomi Fish) originated this CPAN distribution (after forking XML:Grammar::Screenplay which was similar enough) so I'll have a convenient way to edit a story I'm writing in Hebrew and similar fiction, as OpenOffice.org caused me many problems, and I found editing bi-directional DocBook/XML to be painful with either gvim or KDE 4's kate, so I opted for a more plain-texty format.
I hope a lightweight markup language like that for fiction (and possibly other types of manuscripts) will prove useful for other writers. At the moment, a lot of stuff in the proto-text format is subject to change, so you'll need to accept that some modifications to your sources will be required in the future. I hope you still find it useful and let me know if you need any feature or bug-fix.
Shlomi Fish <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This software is Copyright (c) 2007 by Shlomi Fish.
This is free software, licensed under:
The MIT (X11) License
Please report any bugs or feature requests on the bugtracker website http://rt.cpan.org/NoAuth/Bugs.html?Dist=XML-Grammar-Fiction or by email to email@example.com.
When submitting a bug or request, please include a test-file or a patch to an existing test-file that illustrates the bug or desired feature.
You can find documentation for this module with the perldoc command.
The following websites have more information about this module, and may be of help to you. As always, in addition to those websites please use your favorite search engine to discover more resources.
A modern, open-source CPAN search engine, useful to view POD in HTML format.
The default CPAN search engine, useful to view POD in HTML format.
The RT ( Request Tracker ) website is the default bug/issue tracking system for CPAN.
The AnnoCPAN is a website that allows community annotations of Perl module documentation.
The CPAN Ratings is a website that allows community ratings and reviews of Perl modules.
The CPAN Forum is a web forum for discussing Perl modules.
The CPANTS is a website that analyzes the Kwalitee ( code metrics ) of a distribution.
The CPAN Testers is a network of smokers who run automated tests on uploaded CPAN distributions.
The CPAN Testers Matrix is a website that provides a visual overview of the test results for a distribution on various Perls/platforms.
The CPAN Testers Dependencies is a website that shows a chart of the test results of all dependencies for a distribution.
Please report any bugs or feature requests by email to
bug-xml-grammar-fiction at rt.cpan.org, or through the web interface at https://rt.cpan.org/Public/Bug/Report.html?Queue=XML-Grammar-Fiction. You will be automatically notified of any progress on the request by the system.
The code is open to the world, and available for you to hack on. Please feel free to browse it and play with it, or whatever. If you want to contribute patches, please send me a diff or prod me to pull from your repository :)