[Tex/LaTex] Squeezing a paper into a page limit – with IEEEtran


I'm working on this draft for a submission to some conference which – woe is me – uses IEEEtran. I could rant about that class for days, but never mind right now… the point is, I need to squeeze about 8.475 pages into 8 (ignoring references which don't count of course). I have already gone to some pains to rephrase my text, to make it less verbose, to avoid unessential comments, etc. Now, if push comes to shove I'll do some serious re-editing and eventually resign myself to cut some content, but obviously I want to avoid that – so I want to try to squeeze space some.

I've read the general version of this question:

Squeezing scientific paper to fit within page limits

and I already use:


which is pretty tame.

I need to get a bit more violent… so,

  • In the general case you can't touch anything which the class might be imposing. With IEEEtran, maybe there's some tolerance for some fiddling with some values?
  • The use of \usepackage[moderate]{savetrees} helps, but it give me hideous spacing between elements on some pages. Can I disable the "keep lines on same page" feature for a specific paragraph as an ugly way around this phenomenon?
  • I think maybe I can get away with reducing space around figures, and between figures and their captions. How do I that (and not be considered an IEEEtrans criminal)?
  • What do you think might be the most helpful in this situation?
  • Can I squeeze horizontal spacing between glyphs, or words, a bit more?


  • Please, no lecturing about improving grammar and writing less. If it helps you, suppose after I've done that they go and change the number of pages from 8 to 7 🙂
  • I have multiple figures, but almost no equations.

Best Answer

If you look at the documentation of the savetrees package, you'll find that each one of the basic levels it offers (subtle, moderate, extreme) is actually several (independent?) options that you can switch on or off.

For example, for subtle, you have:

  • bibbreaks - Allow page breaks within bibliographic entries.
  • paragraphs - Discourage TeX from allowing the last line of a paragraph to contain only a single word.
  • floats - Relax float placement (more floats per page, increased ability to share pages with text, etc.).
  • mathspacing - Reduce the amount of space within mathematical expressions.
  • wordspacing - Reduce the amount of space between words.
  • tracking - Reduce the amount of space between characters.

and additional options for the stronger levels.

Now, for each of these the documentation gives a bird's-eye view of how it's achieved. So you can:

  • Mix and match options you like or you find appropriate.
  • (Harder) replicate some of the relevant code of savetrees to have the same effect but to a weaker degree when you don't like their defaults.