Block Indent?

Hello again,

I’m loving this software! :smiley:

Another possibilities question:

Is there an easy way to do (or undo) a block indent, for a section with mixed formatting? For example, a sentence or two followed by a bullet list, or a bullet list with children embedded in it? Copy/Paste ruler only works for a single ruler setting, but not for a mixed bag of tricks.

I hate to reveal how archaic I am, but I still love Appleworks, in which I can just highlight a section, no matter how complicated, then hit shift-command-R or shift-command-L to move it as a piece left or right… I love that function, since I use outlines a lot before writing.

Is there something comparable in Scrivener?


Have you thought about using Scriv’s outline mode? Not looking at scriv right now (even if I was I woudl probably get it wrong) but I am sure it will be easy to do once someone reminds me how to get you there.

I wondered about that, but if you mean the “Outliner” button in the toolbar, it seems to only work with the file structure in the binder, not text within a page…

I have tried the “OmniOutliner” program that comes with OS X, but don’t find it flexible enough for my needs, since I usually flesh out the writing right in the outline and end up with a mix of paragraphs and bullet lists.

As I read elsewhere in the forum, Apple seems to have issues with bullet lists in OS X, so I have had problems working with “Pages” too, and usually revert to using Appleworks which I find more flexible.

If this is an Apple bug issue, I can find a workaround… I love Scrivener too much to let block indents put me off! :smiley:


And of course, the built-in List generator on the ruler as well. Scrivener in outliner mode (Cmd-1) is great for laying out sections of your book and organising things. If you want to type in outlines that really have nothing to do with book structure, though, try the “Lists” drop down from the Ruler. You can choose the bullet style, and then use tab and shift-tab to increase and decrease outline depth. Pressing enter twice will exit this mode and return you to what ever paragraph format you were using prior.

Just a note:

Everyone has their own way of working, but this is kind of what the Binder is supposed to do for you. Rather than thinking of the items in the binder as large chunks of book, if you think of it as a working structure where you can click on a section of it and add text to that section. Not only does it make the process of visualising your book easier (since you have an outline of it in the Binder), but it makes editing and reorganising it later on much simpler since moving things around in the outline directly impacts the flow of the underlying text.

Something to play with, if you wish, at any rate. I completely understand that once one has a system, it is often easier to just stick with that though. :slight_smile: Lists might help you out since that is very similar to indenting—you just get bullets along for the ride.

I love the binder, and have been using it both as a big picture organizer and a word processor for smaller chunks… It’s amazing!

I have been using the List generator in Scriv - (thanks for the shift-tab tip for outdenting!)

What I was looking for, though, is a way to shift complex chunks of text to the right or left as a whole in the editing/word processing window, keeping their internal formatting/list arrangements intact, without having to individually shift each section… something like [blockquote] [/blockquote] tags do in html pages.

But I can live without it if necessary.

Thanks for all your help! :smiley:


Yes, that makes sense. Messing with the ruler is really the only way to do this, alas. Some programs have a short-cut way of doing this—it essentially just handles the ruler bits for you—and then Cmd-[ and ] will indent and outdent blocks of text. Scrivener doesn’t have that programmed into it (and obviously couldn’t use those keys anyway because they handle the history function), but if I recall somebody else posted that on the wish list forum a while back, and if you can find that post, you could add your vote to it. As you note, styles really aren’t good for this since you’d have to make an arbitrary number of them and choose them manually. Styles can only set absolute values, not relative values.

Thanks for the info. I’ll continue to mess with the ruler when necessary… though Scriv is helping me organize my thinking so much better that my writing is flowing more easily - I seem to be getting to paragraphs faster, thus not needing the outlines as much!

Better to spend my time writing than fiddling with formatting anyway! :wink:

Thanks for the suggestion re: the wish list… I’ll explore it as time permits.

Happy writing,

That’s precisely the idea behind Scrivener’s philosophy—a way to get at the text faster and more transparently, without all of the mechanisms we’ve had to use in the past in order to work around the document-based philosophy of word processors and typewriters. Good luck in finding your happy-medium!