Compiling and font formatting


I have a previously formatted document created in Microsoft OneNote that includes a great deal of work including font face, size, and colors. In OneNote the default paragraph font size is 12 but when I copy / paste into Scrivener the size becomes 16 though looking visually similar. When I compile the font size is enormous looking every bit 16 points which is way too large.

When editing I can select the entire document then press apple key + ‘-’ to globally (within the current document) decrease the size of all fonts including paragraph, headers, titles, subtitles etc. Basically if I do this 4 times then compile the document looks about right when compiled. The problem is that now my original source document has text that is too small to read. So my question is using compile settings how can I replicate reducing the font size so that my original document font size is readable, but when I compile it the font size of all elements are reduced 4 points?

You can do this with the File -> Compile -> Formatting pane, which is discussed in detail in Section 24.11 of the Scrivener manual.

What I’d recommend, though, is that you leave the font the way you ultimately want it to compile, and change the editor zoom setting. (View -> Zoom) This will make what you see in the editor larger or smaller without changing the font setting at all, and without the added complexity of changing the Compile settings.


Thank you for the reply and I did look into that area you mentioned. My problem is I have Titles, Subtitles, Bullets, and Paragraph styles each with their own font size. When I used the method you suggested it changed the font size for everything to be the same size.

So a follow up question. Can I use compiler settings to change font sizes individually for each of my styles? In other words compiler settings to make Title be 16 point, Subtitle to be 14 point, and default paragraphs to be 12 point?

You can use the compiler settings to change the fonts for “title” elements independent of “text” elements, and you can use different settings for each outline level. But within the body text of a document, Scrivener has no way to tell that this paragraph is a “subtitle,” while that one is “text.”

This is why, if you’ve got the formatting the way you want it in the editor already, it’s simpler to use the Zoom setting to make it more readable if needed.


Gotcha thanks for the explanation. I will use the “format as original” approach.

I’m a Windows 1.9 user. Is there a way to set the text to compile in Times New Roman into the manuscript format in the Windows software? I’ve been using Scrivener for five years, quite happy with 1.9, but it would be nice not to have to reformat in Word. Thanks!