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Old 06-14-2012, 03:17 PM   #1
texasnightowl
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Author Sort Name Algorithm and multiple libraries

I am sure someone else must be doing this, so I would appreciate any input. I am just not getting my mind wrapped around how to handle this.

I have 2 libraries (well, actually a 3rd working library, but let's pretend 2). My Main library where my normal retail books are and a fanfiction library for, well, fanfiction.

In my main library, I use the default settings (at least, I think they are default!) where authors display as "firstname lastname" but the actual sort (shown in the tweak as 'invert') is "lastname, firstname". That's the way I like it and it works. And the sort on my kindle by author last name works...just the way I want it.

However, in my second library, for fanfiction, I changed the tweak to 'copy'. This is because for pen names that are two words or more (ex. 'I love fanfic') I want the author to both display and sort as 'I love fanfic' and NOT 'fanfic, I love'.

Now, when I was doing a boatload of work in my fanfic library (thank goodness for the FFDL plugin!) I changed the tweak to copy and went about my work. But now I'm at a point where I'll be switching back and forth more often and changing the tweak and restarting whenever I switch libraries does not fill me with happy thoughts.

So am I overlooking some other way to manage this? Does anyone else have 2 separate libraries with different author sorts? How do you manage them?
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Old 06-14-2012, 03:53 PM   #2
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As far as I'm aware there is no way to save such tweaks for different libraries. I wish there was because I'm in the same boat. My workaround is to leave it at the regular author sort that I use for my 'real books' library then in my fanfiction library any author that has spaces in their name I replace it with an underscore. It's not ideal but it's the best method I can think to workaround the issue.
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Old 06-14-2012, 04:53 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by texasnightowl View Post
So am I overlooking some other way to manage this? Does anyone else have 2 separate libraries with different author sorts? How do you manage them?
If you're on Windows, then calibrePortable install. One for normal ebooks and one for fanfics.

Caveat, you can't just switch between libraries easily. Then again, you're already restarting Calibre whenever you change the tweak so it's not like working with 2 separate installs with different default settings would be more difficult. At least with this, you don't have to go into Preferences > Tweaks every time. You could just have links on your desktop named "Calibre" and "Calibre fanfic" for the relevant installs.
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:25 PM   #4
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As far as I'm aware there is no way to save such tweaks for different libraries. I wish there was because I'm in the same boat. My workaround is to leave it at the regular author sort that I use for my 'real books' library then in my fanfiction library any author that has spaces in their name I replace it with an underscore. It's not ideal but it's the best method I can think to workaround the issue.
Underscores in author name - not ideal, but not a horrible idea.

Better than switching preferences and restarting all the time.

What is the easiest way to do this for all my existing authors? Cuz I have a lot of them.
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Old 06-14-2012, 05:29 PM   #5
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If you're on Windows, then calibrePortable install. One for normal ebooks and one for fanfics.
Well, that is an option I hadn't considered. I should have because I have played around with a portable install before...and in fact, was going to this afternoon because I have a two week road trip coming up. On the other hand, as mentioned I technically do have a 3rd library (a "working" space where I dump everything before putting it in main) and I was thinking of splitting off a 4th...for all those darned freebies Amazon and B&N give away! I only download the ones that sound good to me, but I still have hundreds!
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Old 06-14-2012, 06:51 PM   #6
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Another option, how about creating a custom column built from the author name on the fanfic library? It would work if you just need it for sorting. If you need it for templates too, then you need to add the column to the other libraries, too (except instead of building it from authors, you'd probably build it from author_sort).

Last edited by ilovejedd; 06-14-2012 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:15 PM   #7
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Another option, how about creating a custom column built from the author name on the fanfic library? It would work if you just need it for sorting. If you need it for templates too, then you need to add the column to the other libraries, too (except instead of building it from authors, you'd probably build it from author_sort).
That would work in the library, yes, but when transferring to kindle wouldn't it use the default author sort and revert back to sorting by "last" name?

Sorry...brain freeze. Where I mention the sort on the Kindle is where you are referring to a template, right? I hadn't previously done that. So where right now the save template for sending to devices is: {author_sort}/{title} - {authors} we would change to be:
{custom_sort}/{title} - {authors}; right?

Last edited by texasnightowl; 06-14-2012 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:36 PM   #8
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That would work in the library, yes, but when transferring to kindle wouldn't it use the default author sort and revert back to sorting by "last" name?
In this case, you create the custom column on both libraries (let's name the hypothetical column custom_author). On normal libraries, you want to set the value to {author_sort}. On fanfic libraries, you want to set the value to {author}. You then add a new metadata plugboard for it (Preferences >> Metadata plugboard).

e.g.:
Format: any format
Device: Kindle
Source template: {#custom_author}
Destination field: author_sort
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:38 PM   #9
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Sorry...brain freeze. Where I mention the sort on the Kindle is where you are referring to a template, right? I hadn't previously done that. So where right now the save template for sending to devices is:
{author_sort}/{title} - {authors} we would change to be:
{custom_sort}/{title} - {authors}; right?
Exactly. In this case, you'd need to create the custom_sort column on all libraries. Just set them to different values (in your case, either author or author_sort) depending on the type of library.
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Old 06-14-2012, 07:46 PM   #10
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OK, one more question...under Preferences>Output Options>Mobi Output I've always (so far) had checked the "Use Author Sort for Author". Is that going to matter/mess anything up or conflict with the Send to Device template? FWIW most fanfictions I save in epub format (using the FFDL plugin) and then I would want them converted when I send them to my Kindle.

Books in my main library are a mixed bag. Vast majority are Amazon AZW (drm stripped to mobi) but I do also have some B&N epub, etc.

Thanks for your input so far!
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Old 06-14-2012, 08:32 PM   #11
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OK, one more question...under Preferences>Output Options>Mobi Output I've always (so far) had checked the "Use Author Sort for Author". Is that going to matter/mess anything up or conflict with the Send to Device template? FWIW most fanfictions I save in epub format (using the FFDL plugin) and then I would want them converted when I send them to my Kindle.
For the Send to Device template, I don't think it would. You'll be using #custom_sort for that anyway. Would like to mention that I'm not absolutely certain so I suggest just do some testing first.

Might be a good idea to start on that portable install so you don't mess things up with your current Calibre install. Make a copy your libraries so you don't mess those up, too. I suggest the calibrePortable version on PortableApps.com instead of the official Calibre download - it handles multiple libraries better (for the PortableApps version, copy the library folders to calibrePortable\Data). The official Calibre Portable download doesn't "portabilize" additional libraries

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Old 06-14-2012, 11:34 PM   #12
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One thing you can do that hasn't been mentioned is to manually set the author sort.

Right click on "Authors" in the tag browser and select "Manage Authors". On that dialog, you can change the author or author sort to whatever you want. If you right-click on an author, there is an option to copy the author to the author sort. Unfortunately, there isn't a way to do more than one author at a time.

Also, you can right-click on an author in the tag browser and see similar options as are in the Manage Authors dialog.

While doing the above takes time, the advantage is that everything else works as expected that uses the author sort field. It also means you can be selective with which authors are treated as real names vs pen names.
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