A Way to Highlight Documents For Each Subplot

I have four subplots in my WIP, and I’m looking for a way of visualizing them. I’m using colors for status. I’m using the icons for the POV character, although I could also design icons that could also code for subplot.

I thought I’d check: Is there any way to highlight documents that match a particular search criterion (e.g. Subplot1). As a mockup, it could look like this, with the blue documents belonging to one subplot:


Do you have to have all of that information together, or can you live with each subplot being in its own collection?

If you can do that, you can easily tag documents in a subplot with a plot-specific keyword, and then set up a search in the Binder to only show documents with that keyword, and save that search as a Collection. You can then easily tab between your sub-plot Collections and still see the POV icons and status colors.

You just wouldn’t be able to view all the sub-plots together in one pane with the sub-plot information visually indicated.

The main problem with your screenshot is that this looks identical to a multiple selection. Combined with Label highlights, selection bars and active editor highlighting, I think highlighting is going to be very difficult to use as an additional tool (thinking of this in terms of a feature request anyway).

I know this is a slightly unorthodox approach, when Scrivener has so much metadata available—but there is one piece of metadata that is absolutely the most visible and accessible to every view: the Title!

Particularly in cases such as this, where the title is not being used as a tool to generate final book structure (like a folder name might be used in part to print a chapter heading), you can do whatever you want with the title[size=80][1][/size]—and part of that might be embedding what we could consider to be metadata into it. E.g. “G12: Vince Investigate”, would indicate that this event in the narrative is associated with the “G12” plot line.

There are so many different potential ways of doing that, some that even work well in combination with other such “tags”. Here are a few ideas:

PLOT1//name of scene PLOT1//PLOT2//name of scene name of scene //PLOT1 name of scene @plot1 @plot2 name of scene #forThoseTwitterKids

I think a good goal in all cases is to come up with an approach that searches well, and is also easy enough on the eye. Of course the Synopsis also makes for an excellent place to put this kind of stuff (note that text synopses remain searchable even if there is an image synopsis “covering” them). But of course for what you are requesting specifically—something universal enough to be in the binder—it is not so good.

If you did use Keywords, then the Outliner could provide that kind of overview. See Fig. 8.25 in the user manual, under §8.3.3, Special Columns.

Of course Custom Meta-Data (of the “List” variety perhaps) could also make for a decent “subplot” tool here, particularly if Keywords are already overloaded. Again that moves overview into the Outliner though.

[size=80][1] And thinking about it, this technique could even blend with “functional” titles, thanks to Replacements, so long as the tagging approach is easy enough to search for in a symbolic sense. A replacement for {$@} that replaced with nothing would wipe out all curly-bracketed tags.[/size]

Thanks for the ideas. Collections are great, but in this case I want to see where the subplots fit in. I also considered adding test to the titles. The keyword tiles are nice but I like to see the weaving in the binder.

What I went with is more icons, as seen below.

I code both POV character and subplot with the icons. For example, yellow indicates the kidnapping subplot, and yellow with a magnifying glass signifies the kidnapping subplot with the investigator POV character.

Though an ephemeral view, if you select the docs in a collection then switch to the full binder, all your coll docs are highlighted there in situ.

Yes, that does the trick, thanks! I can use it in conjunction with the icon trick.

I’m finding that I need to bring up the collection, then select the documents on, for example, the corkboard, then switch to the full binder view and select Navigate/Reveal in Binder.

Reveal in Binder works from the sidebar as well (in fact its addition to the software originally was primarily to serve as a way of locating Search Results), so you should not require the extra step of getting objects into the editor so they can be selected there, and then revealed.

But say you have other reasons for wanting to view these items on the corkboard: try right-clicking on the editor header bar and use the “Go to Collection” submenu to jump straight to that corkboard. That will at least cut out a few steps from what you are describing.