Can I import a spread sheet into a project?


I have a template of sorts, a World Building spread sheet, that I like using for structuring my ideas when writing. Is there any way i can import spread sheets inside to a scrivener project? It would be really wonderful to keep everything organized in the same place.


You can import them, just like you can import just about every file type, but of course we don’t have an actual spreadsheet editor in the software, that would be way out of scope. So it will be in the Binder, you can organise it with other things, apply keywords to it, give it an index card and so on, and when you want to work with it, just hit Ctrl-F5 to open it in Excel or whatever you use.

I should also mention that when you’re using your Mac, if the spreadsheet format has a Quick Look preview, the software will try to use that as a read-only view in the main editor, rather than the generic icon.

If an Excel spreadsheet is imported, does it copy equations or the resultant values?

I’m not sure what you mean by that, could you clarify? I know next to nothing about Excel, is this a common problem, where if you copy the bytes of an Excel file to another location on your drive (which is all importing means), the dynamic properties of the spreadsheet are flattened to static numbers? That seems very bizarre to me, and contrary to how files typically function, but like I say, I know nothing about this topic. :slight_smile:

In Excel, you can type an equation into the text field and in the box it shows the result. For instance, in the text field I type “=SUM(1,2,3,4,5)” (minus the quotes) and the result in the box is shown as 15. Or I can add/multiply/etc the contents of multiple boxes to get an answer. My question is does the imported table only show the results, or the text of the equations?

Importing an Excel file just makes a copy of the .xls (or .xlsx) file. It doesn’t interact with the contents of the Excel spreadsheet in any way. Essentially, it’s just like copying the file to a thumb drive, or to another folder on the same computer.

So as far as contents go, what ends up being displayed in Scrivener? The equations or the results?

Same thing as gets displayed when you click on the file in the Finder and hit your space bar. I think it’s the same as whatever you see when you look at the first sheet (if you have multiple sheets, you won’t see those, I don’t think).

I take this to mean it would show the equation then, and not the results.

Never mind. I was finally able to get to one of my Scriv installs and see that the table itself doesn’t seem to show, just a link to open it in Excel, so my question doesn’t really matter.

On Windows, you only get the link, it’s on the Mac that the OS’s quick-look feature is used by Scrivener; it’s essentially like a screenshot of the document.

But the last time I looked at a spreadsheet, I didn’t see formulas in the cells–I saw results; only when I had selected an individual cell did I see its formula, and then only in the bar at the top of the sheet. Is there a mode in Excel that shows formulas in ever cell at once?

Not that I’ve seen. You have to click in the cell and then the equation is shown in the above text box for the cell.