I'd say what you're doing wrongly is saving as XML first.  Save your 
unstructured doc as HTML, then copy/smart-paste into the body tag of a new DITA 
topic.  This is just a quick way to get lots of structure for free.  If you're 
talking about a novel, you should really have nothing but <p> tags anyway.  You 
should look up Smat Paste in the docs.  It's really an interesting feature.

>
> Save the chapter as HTML, copy it, then use Smart Paste to paste it into
> a DITA topic.  Every P should translate into the correct DITA paragraph
> element (also a <p>)

If I save the chapter as XML, Frame pops up a window asking for which 
Structured Application to use. If I pick none, an error pops up with 
"Unable to validate because no DTD or Schema was specified in the XML 
file" but continue? I say yes.

When I open the file, I get this Structure View: (I did this once with 
the paratag as Body and once as Para)

-Root
|--Title
|--Body (Para)
    | A-
    | ID = pgfId-998413
|--Body (Para)
    | A-
    | ID = pgfId-998414
|--Body (Para)
    | A-
    | ID = pgfId-998415

I'm presuming this is correct?


Cntrl-A to copy the entire file

Open > New > Dita file > New topic

The first time (paratag Body), I found the Element marked <p> and 
clicked Paste Special. I chose Rich Text Format, but all of the text 
appears in the structured view under one single <p> element.

The second time (paratag Para) I clicked Smart Paste and got this error 
message "Smart paste could not convert clipboard data to structured 
content".


What am I doing wrongly?

Thanks.
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