Adding Front Matter Treats First Chapter As Front Matter

Hi! Compiling Paperback 6x9 without front matter results in the project appearing as expected with headers, footers and page numbers in the appropriate locations. However, when I add front matter to compile, the software seems to be treating the first chapter as part of the front matter, resulting in headers, footers and page number not starting until Chapter 2. I’m using the default settings for compile and the supplied front matter folder for paperback. What might cause this behavior?

One possibility is that your first chapter is not where it should be in the binder.

Another possibility (although it doesn’t quite fit your description, trusting you said you only have the issue when using a front matter) is that you have “Different header and footer on first pages” checked, in the Pages settings of your compile format, plus “Main body header and footer starts” set to a specific page.
(That would kind of be the “manual” front matter setup. – ish)

How exactly do you do that ?
Using this, in the main compiler panel ? (That would be the right way to do it.)

Can you post a screenshot of your binder ?

I tried a few more tests and it only happens when I compile to docx. I compiled to PDF and the header/footer and page numbering was correct. It’s quite odd. I am adding the front matter via the check box on the compile page as shown in your image.

I’ve read here on this forum that compiling to Microsoft’s DOCX format sometimes is unreliable. It’s not a simple file format. When this comes up, it’s recommended to compile to RTF which Word can read. If you need DOCX use Word to convert it. Results might be better for you.


Thanks for the tip! The RTF version also didn’t have the page numbering/header/footer issue. Only docx. Sounds like the collective wisdom is correct regarding docx. I don’t need docx.

Absolutely! Word and DOCX are so ubiquitous that people automatically think they should compile to DOCX. But RTF is Scrivener’s native format, so there is going to be conversion between the two. So, with all due respect to Keith (who wrote his own converter for the Mac version—though I personally find the Sharing → Import-Export tab in Preferences confusing, not that that matters as I use Nisus and compile to RTF anyway), the best RTF–DOCX converter is Word. Both formats were created by Microsoft!