Compile is compiling my headaches, only

Hello everyone!

This is my very first post here so apologies if I’m missing something/misplacing it, I’m trying my best, I promise!

I’m trying to compile my work into an epub format. I’ve got my chapters in a Manuscrit folder, in a text file for each chapter, with a nice title for each in a style that is common for each chapter. So it goes like this:
↳ Prologue
↳ Chapter 1
↳ Chapter 2
↳ Chapter 3
etc etc

But when I go to compile it, all I get in a giant mess with some chapters empty of all text and only the title shows up. I’ve struggled to get a table of content for a very long time that actually showed all of my chapters. I understood that I needed to go for the ebook layout format that Scrivener offers. I didn’t tweak it, didn’t touch anything. It created that TOC just fine and I thought I was finally out of the woods, but I clicked on a random chapter only to realise, with great horror, that it’s completely empty, apart from the title. No text. No chapter content.

Admittedly, I’m very new to Scrivener but I’m not technologically impaired and I usually am the one called for help when things don’t work out with a computer. So to put it very politely: I’m frustrated beyond words, which is not the best when you’re trying to write a book.

Have you got any idea what I’m doing wrong? I would have loved to give you an insight in the form of a screen capture, but it looks like I’m still on probation for now!

Thanks in advance for your help!!

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Hi periwinklefreak, and welcome to the forum.

I suspect the issue will be caused by the section layouts that you’ve assigned to your documents not including the body text in their text examples in the File > Compile > Assign Section Layouts options.

That will then give you a main File > Compile panel like this:

You might also want to check out our 4-part series titled “Getting Your Work Out” on the Mac tutorial videos page. You can click on the dropdown and select “macOS” to see its video page.

We do not have Windows-specific compile demonstration videos. Some of the settings shown in those macOS videos won’t perfectly match your settings on
a PC.

But, the overall compile process and the steps needed to customize the compile settings are similar. Seeing that process demonstrated might help you find the settings you need to change.

The Tutorial also has some documents about the compile process. And, Chapters 23 and 24 in the Scrivener manual go into detail on the settings and customization process. You can access a PDF copy of the manual from the Help menu. That is also where you can access the Tutorial.

I personally like using the Tutorial as a testing space for a number of Scrivener features, including testing out the compile tools and options. That way, I can experiment with different compile formats and output files without using my own work. If I get settings wrong in the Tutorial, I can delete the flawed one and get a new copy from the Help menu.

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Hi Ruth! Thank you so much for your help, it actually worked for the very basic thing I wanted to do! I’m sure I’ll have a worse time if I want to properly put things in form one day, but for now, you’ve tamed my headache!

Have a nice day!

1 Like