Some useful resources for DocBook:
The latest version of "DocBook - The Definitive Guide", the online version of the O'Reilly book of the same name. Essential reading if you plan to hack around with DocBook.
The XML DTD for DocBook. As of now, the latest version is 4.1.2.
XSL stylesheets to allow your XML DocBook mark up to be rendered by an XML-aware user agent (such as Gecko or Internet Explorer).

Once you're armed with the above three, writing a DocBook document is this easy:

<?xml version="1.0" standalone="no"?>
<?XML:stylesheet type="text/xsl" href=".../docbook/xhtml/docbook.xsl"?>
<!DOCTYPE book PUBLIC "-//OASIS//DTD DocBook XML V4.1.2//EN" ".../docbkx412/DOCBOOKX.DTD">
<title>My First Book</title>
<title>The main bit</title>
20 GOTO 10

Remembering to replace the "..." in the pathnames with the locations you stored the files, of course.

There's also a simplified DocBook XML DTD ( for situations where the full-blown DTD is over-weight. Currently it uses the full DocBook XSL Stylesheet referenced above but the author plans to produce an equally lightweight version to complement the DTD. There's a rather cute online summary ( that lets you browse the DTD, too.