Using Open Office, I've been searching the web for tools to improve the design and give hints on writing a book in OO. Here is my list of links:
Overall this is the best link: http://www.linux.com/archive/articles/51448
A basic tutorial on Open Office is Available here: http://www.kaaredyret.dk/openoffice.html
Further resources on taming OO are here: http://www.taming-openoffice-org.com/newsite/?page_id=27
A general guide to writing a book is available here: http://www.taming-openoffice-org.com/newsite/?page_id=18
There are two ways to write a book: as a single file or as a master document. For information about the single file method see here: http://www.freesoftwaremagazine.com/articles/create_book_template_with_writer
Interestingly, the other Open Office apps have styles too: http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/graphic-styles-openofficeorg-draw-and-impress
Information on graphic design and pagelayout is on Wikipedia here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Graphic_design and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Page_layout
I also use Zotero for references, which I'm finding very helpful. Go here http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Bibliographic/Style
You can get a full book template here: http://www.lulu.com/content/multimedia/6x9-book-template-for-openofficeorg-writer/232670
The open office templates are here: http://templates.services.openoffice.org/en/search/node/book
I've downloaded all the templates but I'm not that impressed by the graphical design.
The 'Advanced book template' has space for notes.
One template with active development is here: http://templates.services.openoffice.org/en/node/1577
This is intended for novelists, but has a lot of detailed help, including styles to create notes that won't be part of the final book. There is even a google group