A couple of basic questions

I’ve figured out enought to get started on a writing project but can’t find certain basic things I need to keep going. So I’ve got several question if someone will kindly help me out.

  1. I searched the Help section of Scrivener but couldn’t find anything about sub-folders under Folders. Surely this has got to be a simple function to get one, but I can’t find how to create a sub-folder.

  2. For Fonts, there’s a ‘smaller than’ and ‘larger than’ button on the Toolbar, but how do I know what size the font is? (Or do I just use the ‘Font’ button instead of the smaller than and larger than buttons?

  3. I’m writing a Persuasive Argument, and am trying to limit some of my points to one page. This might be a hard question to answer but, how can I know that when a page is printed out, it won’t roll over to the next page? In other words, how can I set up my pages so that if I use the same margins and font sizes, etc (what else?), I can know I’m staying on the one page and not getting wordy… rolling over to the next page?

  4. Is there a Scrivener pdf Manual or something I can download to keep side by side with my project to refer to?

Thanks to anyone who can help me. By the way, I LOVE Scrivener! And finding out new things about it is just plain fun! So hurry up and give me some answers so I can have even more fun! haha!

  1. Select a folder. Then click the green + button (at top) or the folder button (at bottom). The new folder will be inside the selected folder. If you err, just drag the folder where you want it.

  2. Your font is set in Scrivener: Preferences: Text Editing: Default Main Text Attributes. Set the attributes the way you want them, then make occasional alterations via the Fonts palette (Cmd-T).

  3. Scrivener is primarily for outlining and drafting, so at present it does not display page layout. You settle all those issues after exporting to a word processor. (You can do word counts on selected text; 250-300 words is usually a page, depending on font used.)

  4. No PDF documentation at present. You might keep the Help window on and park it on the Dock when not needed. The FAQ pages and the Tutorial are also indispensable.

Thanks for responding! And for telling me how to set those preferences. I have a couple of follow-up questions.

  1. I have a topic under Draft but when I click the green + I just get another of the same (a Folder) instead of a sub-folder to that topic that’s indented to the right a little. (I did accidently get a sub-folder under another topic but don’t know how that happened so I can’t repeat it.)

  2. When I format one page in Pages to have One inch at the top and bottom margins and 3/4 inch on the left and right margins, I can get about 425 words on a page that has a title, normal paragraphs with 6 or 7 blank lines between the paragraphs, using a size 12 Font in Times New Roman. Does that sound right, considering you said I should get about 250-300 words on one page? Will Scrivener allow me to export just one page to “Pages” or “Nisus” to see what the final copy of that page will look like?

  3. I guess this is just a comment. I wish there was a Manual. Often when I go to Help, it just gives me an arrow that points to where to make that function operable, but doesn’t open a box to explain things. If I need to know about Folders, I need more than to be pointed to the Folder function that opens a new Folder. I think a Manual would keep me from having to ask so many question here, which somewhat embarrasses me and surely must bother you. :confused:

If you wait a moment longer, after the little arrow things, you should get about a half-dozen hits when searching for Folder. The second one down on the list (for me) references The Binder, which is a fairly long document discussing not only the Binder itself, but the various things which can be created within it, including the difference between folders, files, and file stacks. You can access the entire manual to be read at your leisure by choosing “Scrivener Help” before searching in the menu. Searching destroys the help menu and replaces it with search results… kind of confusing. There is a manual, and it is quite huge and comprehensive. :slight_smile:

I must not have an ‘intuitive’ brain. I just don’t think to click on ‘Binder’ when I type in the word ‘Folder’. But when I went to the Binder, it said a lot, but nothing I could see about creating sub-folders. Am I blind?

There is nothing special there, just use drag and drop, or Cmd-Ctrl-Left and Right + Up and Down to move things around with the keyboard. Up and down will move it accordingly in the Binder, so to make one folder subordinate to another, move it directly below, and then use Cmd-Ctrl-Right arrow to move it “right”. The same can be done for pretty much anything in the Binder. A few special items (like Draft) cannot be placed beneath other things. This is covered down near the bottom of section on the binder, regarding drag and drop outlining.

And yes, it makes more sense (to me anyway) when viewing the help sections as a table of contents in the actual manual, rather than searching for some particle and then looking for a specific instance of that particle rather than the containing concept which discusses the particle. When you see the table of contents does not include “tiny things” but rather broad strokes, you can more intuitively scale up your idea to “what is a folder a part of”. In Apple’s search result list, though, you are right it doesn’t really make sense. I’m not terribly fond of that whole search menu idea for this very reason.

That works. Also, I accidently found out that if I click one of those ‘folders’ (the far left ones) and drag it right on top of another folder, it’s like putting it inside it, making it appear as a sub-folder beneath the folder it’s dragged into. Cool. Thanks!

Try a right-click on the tool bar to customize it.

You will find a lot more tool bar icons that might come handy to you, for example +group, +text etc. if you don’t like the one for all Add button (the big + with the arrow). Also buttons to move binder items in both their order and their level.


The most important part of my point 1 is that you must first select a folder, meaning click on it and mark it with a dark blue line. That gives the New Folder command a target; tells it where to place the sub-folder you are creating. When you want to create a new document in a folder, select that folder first. Then use the Add: New Text. After the first new document, just type Return in the binder to create new documents.

As for page length, if you’re getting 425 words in 12-point Times New Roman, you must be using single-space lines. My average of 250-300 words was for double-spacing, the standard in manuscript format, whether for academic or creative projects.

Hang in there.


Thanks for clarifying the line spacing issue. It makes my number of words make more sense, since I do use single spacing, and I finally did succeed at creating sub-folders.

I have another question that has to do with formatting that I think deserves a new Thread, so please chime in there too if you will. :exclamation: