# Writing text in parallel, in twosided mode

Use case: I'd like to write a two-sided document, with prose on the RHS and sidenotes on the LHS, with (if possible) the note appearing parallel aligned with its label in the prose.

I can do this with the paracols package, with all the text on one page. But I don't know how to lay it out across two pages.

Approximate MWE:

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}
\usepackage[landscape]{geometry}
\usepackage{paracol}
\usepackage{lipsum}

\begin{document}
\begin{paracol}{2}
\switchcolumn
\lipsum[1]
\switchcolumn*
\textbf{prose}: The long and boring part of a document.
\switchcolumn
This constitutes a long and verbose set of \textbf{prose}.
\switchcolumn*
\switchcolumn
\lipsum[1]
\switchcolumn*
\switchcolumn

\end{paracol}
\end{document}


So, as you can see, for each reference on the recto page (at the moment just regular bold text), I'd like to add details on the corresponding line on the verso page. Is there a way to refer to the "corresponding line on the opposite page"? There are various edge cases like "what if you have two references on the same line" or "what if it doesn't fit on the page" but I imagine these are not hard to deal with.

• It is preferred to always include an MWE with the question. You don't have to wait for people to ask for it. Post it and we are happy to help :) – M. Al Jumaily Aug 12 '18 at 22:09
• Okay, I've put some code up that reproduces approximately what I want (the body of text is the right sort of thing, but I don't want to have to break paragraphs to do the referencing). I'll try to put a picture up too so it isn't necessary to compile the thing. – preferred_anon Aug 14 '18 at 17:25
• I want to make sure that I get this right, your work space will be a recto page (double sided). Let's focus on the front (page 1) and the back (page 2) only i.e. just one piece of a paper back and forth. Page 1 will always have prose on the RHS and sidenotes on the LHS (parallel aligned with each other). How about page 2? will it have the same layout i.e. prose on the RHS and sidenotes on the LHS parallel and aligned? Can there be more than 1 prose on one page? Also, what is the design with regards to the porse and the sidenotes? It is 50% of the page for porse and 50% for the side note? – M. Al Jumaily Aug 14 '18 at 20:01
• Sorry, let me be completely precise: In your numbering, page 1 is on the right. Consider a double page spread (say, 2-3). Page 3 will have (on its front) prose, like the right hand column of my MWE. Certain words on page 3 will have some kind of marginal note (essentially a footnote). I would like the footnotes to appear on page 2, rather than the usual place at the bottom of the page, preferably directly opposite the place they're being referenced from. – preferred_anon Aug 14 '18 at 20:07
• So the odd numbered pages consist entirely of prose, and the even numbered pages consist entirely of sidenotes. I'm not very attached to the idea of the notes being footnotes, per se, but I have no idea how to replicate what I've done with columns in double-sided pages. Each column in the MWE is intended to represent a page in my ideal layout. (so the given image is of a single double-page spread) – preferred_anon Aug 14 '18 at 20:09

I still don't have a strong grip with regards to what you really expect. Here is what I have come up with. Use todonotes and place your definition on the left of the page (by putting \reversemarginpar in the preamble or \normalmarginpar if you would like to put them on the right). Having two notes close to each other isn't a problem. The only problem is having long note that spans beyond the bottom margin or even the whole paper. The only fix I can think of is the use the \newpage every time you encounter such thing.

\documentclass[a4paper]{article}
\usepackage[backgroundcolor = none,
%linecolor= none,                   % Removes the line
%bordercolor= none,                 % Removes the border
bordercolor=red]{todonotes}
\usepackage[landscape]{geometry}
\usepackage{xcolor}
\usepackage{lipsum}

% Can change the width of the note
\geometry{lmargin = 2in, marginparwidth = 1in}  % lmargin should be +1 inch larger than marginparwidth

%\normalmarginpar                               % Used to place the marign on the right side.
\reversemarginpar                               % Used to place the marign on the left side.
\begin{document}
\lipsum[1]. Now I will add a note here \todo{First note has been added!}.
Here is the second note: \todo{Second note is added, note (pun intended) that both
notes are very close and \textit{should} overlap but this has been taken care of.}
Now, continue to the next paragraph.\lipsum[5]
\todo{Third note is added and it needs to be very very very very very very very
very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very
very very very very very very very very very very very very very very long}\lipsum[6]
\end{document}


If you use \newpage before inserting the note i.e.

... Now, continue to the next paragraph.\newpage \lipsum[5] \todo{Third note is added and it needs to be very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very long}\lipsum[6]

you will have to following:

• Sorry, I think the MWE added more confusion than it resolved. My idea is that the pages would be a5 twosided in portrait, with a double page spread resembling the a4 landscape page in the example. I suspect this isn't doable without some effort in TeX, so I'm going to keep looking around for hints and try to piece something together myself. Thank you for your effort! – preferred_anon Aug 19 '18 at 20:18
• This example seems very close to what I'm aiming for – preferred_anon Aug 19 '18 at 20:22