Can't compile with front matter

Hi, and thanks in advance for the help. It feels like every time I compile a new project, or a new version of an old project, Compile behaves differently, in ways that aren’t explained in the tutorial.

I’m on Version 2 of this manuscript, which is contained in a new folder. Compile defaults to Version 1 each time, so I have to manually select the chapters on the left side to tell it what to compile. Usually this works fine, but Front Matter is grayed out, and won’t add itself to the compile. I tried to attach screenshots, showing what I’m telling it to compile, and showing the grayed-out front matter setting, but I don’t see a way to do that here.

What am I doing wrong? Thanks.


Don’t choose Current Selection, but click to topmost option to drill down to you second version.

Make sure to tick the checkbox Treat as a Complete Manuscript.

Is the Front Matter in a Font Matter folder outside your Root/Manuscript folder? Have you pointed the Font Matter drop-down list to the correct folder?

Can you Compile only the Front matter?

BTW, if it matters, I’m using Scrivener on a Mac.

If I don’t choose “Current Selection,” then the only option I have at the top is the old manuscript version. The new Version 2 is in its own folder on the left column, but it doesn’t appear in the Compile section.

I don’t see a checkbox anywhere for “Treat as a Complete Manuscript.”

Yes, the front matter is in its own folder, which I can edit, and I can compile it alone. I don’t see a Front Matter drop-down list anywhere.


It sounds like Version 2 is not actually in the Draft/Manuscript folder. The “Add front matter” checkbox (beneath the contents list in the Compile Overview window) will be greyed out if you use Current Selection, so the easiest option here would be to swap Version 1 and 2 around; i.e., move Version 1 outside of the Draft/Manuscript folder, and move Version 2 into it. Then you’ll be able to select the Draft folder from the “Compile:” dropdown menu, and the front matter checkbox will become available to you. Tick that checkbox to make the dropdown menu available, then select your front matter folder there.

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Ok, that makes sense. I hadn’t thought of the “Manuscript” folder as a master folder. Now I have to nest the new one inside the old one, but I guess in the future I’ll just put each version inside its own folder inside Manuscripts. Thanks!

So, why don’t you do that right now? Create a back up, create two folders and drag each version inside its own folder? Then you get the situation I started my first reply from:

Like I have 3 versions of my WIP in one Project and can Compile each separately with “Treat Compile group as complete manuscript” checked. Including or excluding Front matter.