Variables in topics act as "placeholders" that can be filled with changeable data.

Say for example, you need to produce content for your many different clients. You can save time by producing one book, and then changing variables for the company name, logo, and so on, to make personalized versions of the content.

Using Variables in Books

When variables are used in topics, their names appear between <angle brackets>. The value of a variable only displays when you publish the final output. Use variables to assign metadata to objects, and substitute text or graphics used by external files when publishing to web-based outputs.

View a full list of the variables available in the library from Files Manage Variables, or use the variables options in the Library Explorer or the Editor ribbon bar.

Use variable values at the default, or library level for general use, or specifically assign values at the object level. When you publish the book, the variable values are resolved and used in the content. The order of precedence for resolving values is topic object followed by book object; if there are no assignments, the default value is used.


  • Text enclosed in angle brackets is only treated as a variable and resolved during publishing if Author-it finds a corresponding entry in the Manage Variables window.
  • When a variable is assigned to a book object, and that book object is then used as a sub-book the variable assignments are ignored and only those applied at the topic level, or to the Master Book, resolves during publishing.