Why is Data Merge not working for you? I've had (or watched) good catalog experiences with Em Software products (both InCatalog and InData) but your job, as specced, seems like a Data Merge no-brainer.
Thanks for the reply. I need it to flow into one text box. Can I do that with data merge. Or...I could have it flow into a table.
There's a thread at http://forums.adobe.com/message/5957654 where we've been discussing this problem at length. Uwe laubender has written a script which will thread the frames after the merge, as long as you have a number field as the first paragraph (it can be removed after threading using Find/Change). It doesn't look as if he's posted the script inthe forum, but I think he would send you a copy if you contact him.
I do my pricelist, katalogs, Phonebooks… everything which is data driven with a Plugin called EasyCatalog from 65bit.com. You can connect Databases, CSV-Files, XML-Data, Access and more to InDesign. The Plugin is not that expensive and it is relativly ease to work with.
With EasyCatalog you can even realize complex designs. And trough my point of view more reliable. The Plugin can cope with a lot of data.
Dani (from Switzerland)
As well as Uwe's script, which was a wonderful collaboration to resolve a particular issue, there is the TextStitch plug-in from Rorohiko:
And then there is XML. I don't know the data source format, but if it is a database it may be able to be output in XML without many issues.
But really, while I work a lot in XML versus datamerge, this really looks like an easy datamerge combined with the stitching, deletion of the pages and frames (except the first one) after stitching and simply resize the one frame left. Autoflow and away you go. Which all goes much faster than writing this response.
In either case, use samples of the data to make the styles. Then you simply need to apply them to the placeholders (in the case of a merge) or the tags (in the case of XML).
This is going to likely come across really weird...so apologies right up front.
Someone tried to invite me to a chat this morning, I dismissed it, but upon reflection it may have been someone I have recently replied to in the InDesign forum. the name in GMail began with a lowercase k. As this is one of a couple threads, I am posting this weirdness here as I don't think the other thread would apply.
If so, please send a PM by clicking on my name and we'll exchange email addresses.
If not, please once again accept my apologies. To help make amends, and to be semi-relavent to the thread, here is one format of XML that would work, just need to get the export to produce something like this, which is an an editor and so is cutoff:
Which would produce this...after styles are set up: