A way to import the outline into Mellel

Probably the title says it all. I have found a round-about-way to predefine character styles (via codes and the find-replace function of Mellel), but I cannot predefine an outline in Scrivening in a way that Mellel recognizes and can convert to “autotitles”.
Thus I have to manually enter the outline in Mellel, which is a lot of work for a long document. Please correct me if there already is some shortcut!



P.S. Marvellous project!


I guess the problem is that Mellel replaces all your RTF styles into its own styles. I’m hoping there is a chance this will be changed soon, but I can’t see signs that this may happen.

Asking to Mellel’s creators is not a bad idea, though.


Mellel uses its own file format (.mell). Although I believe it is XML-based, reverse engineering it would be a nightmare, especially as they could change it at any time. Moreover, Mellel only supports a limited number of outline levels (ten), whereas Scrivener’s levels are unlimited, which complicates things further. As for styles, RTF doesn’t hold style information, which is why exporting to RTF doesn’t maintain styles when you open it in Mellel. So I am afraid that there is no way to support this, sorry.

Thanks for the kind words about Scrivener. :slight_smile:

All the best,


When exporting a document from Word or OpenOffice to RTF, the style sheet is preserved. Probably, this is not a standard feature, and is made with a trick, but they do something to achieve exporting.

There is a declaration, at the beginning of RTF documents generated by these programs, saying “{\stylesheet”. I guess this is where the style sheet is saved.



Thanks for that very speedy reply - reminds me of the early days of Mellel :smiley:

If you are correct and my request is technically impossible or at least extremely complicated to implement, I’ll probably have to reconcile myself to manually adding all the autotitles.

Unless somebody finds a roundabout way before I complete my thesis and import it into Mellel - so take your time… :wink:



Keith and Paolo,

Styles (at least character styles and note styles) are not problematic: I can use tags (e.g. /i/…\i\ for italics) to define character styles or style variations in Scrivener, and then change the formatting and get rid of the codes with a single replace-all action (basically following the tutorial “to HTML and back” on page 83 of the “Mellel Guide”). The rtf note stream can be converted via insert>note>edit note attributes. So generally speaking, the compatibility of Scrivener and Mellel is okay.



P.S. Paolo, thanks for the tip! I checked the Mellel forum, there this question has already been asked once or twice, unfortunately without a satisfactory solution surfacing.

P.P.S. And now I should really start writing that thesis again!


Scrivener uses Apple’s built-in RTF export capabilities, the same as you get when saving from TextEdit. Apple’s RTF support isn’t fantastic, but it serves - and is better than writing my own RTF parser. :slight_smile: