Different spin on a Windows-version of Scrivener

Would you be willing to pre-pay for a Windows-version of Scrivener so that Keith would have sufficient funds to go ahead with that project, with no promise that you would ever get your money back?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Yes, up to the same price as the Mac-version

0 voters

To add to the chorus of requests for a Windows-version of Scrivener, I’d like to put a different spin on it.

At logos.com/prepub they have a scheme where Logos can develop software at no financial risk to themselves. They suggest titles of books to digitize, and then people pre-order them. Those titles that get sufficient pre-orders go ahead, only after the required number of pre-orders are made. That way, Logos never has to risk producing a title that never sells, because they only proceed once enough pre-orders come in. At the time of pre-ordering, credit card numbers are given, but not debited until the product actually ships.

How many people would be willing to pre-order, or even pre-pay, so that Keith could hire a Windows developer to produce a Windows-version of Scrivener?

I would find it awesome to have a Windows-version, so that I work interchangeably in my Mac and Windows computers.

The important point, however, is to maintain the beautiful Mac-like appearance, and not make the Windows version look like … ummm … Windows.

To make this poll more accurate, please only vote if you are keen on having a Windows version. Don’t vote if you intend to run Scrivener totally under a Mac environment. This is because I don’t want this to be a poll about how many people want the Windows version. Specifically, this poll is about being willing to pre-pay.

Woah, while I appreciate the enthusiasm, I would never take anyone’s money for something they couldn’t receive immediately. :slight_smile: If a Windows programmer ever comes along who is a writer and on the same wavelength as me, and he or she wants to program a Windows version and give me a share of the profits, that is one thing… But for now it’s more important to me to get the Mac version as perfect and stable as can be and to use it myself.

Thanks though!
All the best,

Hi Keith,

According to the Logos Software model, logos.com/prepub they do not take the money upfront, but merely take firm pre-orders. That way, they can develop software without financial risk.

For those of you who aren’t aware, Logos is the largest developer of Bible-search software. The Pre-Pub model started many years ago with one title, and proved so successful that it has enabled Logos since then to produce many dozens of titles (as you can see from their PrePub page).

p/s any possibility of you uploading the most recent beta, while you fine tune version 1.1?


Hello there.

I suspect that folk will vote ‘no’ to remove any possibility of Keith being distracted from the Mac version, by attempting a Windows port.

But why not just get a Mac and install Windows on it? You can use Scrivener as Keith intended, and still have Windows. In fact, there is a definite advantage to running Windows on Macs. The lack of crapware means that it runs very fast by all accounts.

Not trying to push you into buying a Mac, just pointing out what could be an easier solution than a Windows port.


Looking at your post again, you seem to have a Mac already! Sorry 'bout that.

Would like to point out one thing though; an application should look native, no matter what it is running on. The biggest complaint I hear about iTunes on Windows, is that it looks like a Mac application, rather than a Windows application.

Second to what Rayz said…

So no, I wouldn’t contribute to a Windows version, though I might toss a euro or two into a fund to keep KB centered on his Mac (and on ours).


Granted, Scrivener is great.

And I understand wanting it.

I don’t understand wanting a Windows version, which wouldn’t be as good.

Get a Mac (they dual boot now!) get Scrivener, and you have both worlds.

Erm… I third it? :open_mouth:

Such a beautifully sculpted piece of software deserves to live within a beautifully sculpted operating system.

I wouldn’t use my Ferrari to lug stuff round a building site. Saying that, I don’t actually have a Ferrari. But, should I own one, It wouldn’t end up on a building site. I was going somewhere with this but seem to have lost the erm… plot. :blush: Ah, now I remember. Scrivener deserves the best. :smiley:

I’ve laughed so much I’ve now given myself a stitch…

:slight_smile: :astonished: :smiley:

Why, thankyou Juddbert.

I am glad that my inane wittering and mental inadequicies are able to bring pleasure to others. I had hoped to include a similar sense of humour in my forthcoming book. I have, however, received some unfortunate news. :cry: Matron has insisted that these bouts of humour are not, infact, of my own making. The vast cocktail of drugs, currently used to keep me sedated, are apparently to blame. With monetary cuts, to the mental health service budget, it looks like my days of writing are numbered, as I am to be released back into the public. I guess on the plus side, at least, I will be able to get back to my original plan. World domination, using only three elastic bands and a spoon! :smiling_imp:

I don’t think you can do much with the bands, but I’d suggest sharpening up the leading edge of the spoon as much as possible. Unless it’s a plastic one, of course. :slight_smile:

The problem isn’t that there’s not a market, but that Keith is just one guy, and a guy who’s supposed to be writing right now, not coding. He made the app for his own writing needs, and does not hesitate to point users to other software that might meet their needs better. This indicates a philosophy of a guy who’s not out to make a broadly-popular software, but a narrowly focused application that does one particular job exceptionally well.

Obviously, he’s succeeded. That’s why he’s currently enjoying my money. And yours, too.

But once a Windows version gets added into the mix, the philosophy that makes Scrivener so wonderful must, by necessity, disappear. Supporting two operating systems with different development environments is a full-time job for a guy who is interested in software more than he is in writing. Which means that the best filter for that narrow focus is lost: Keith himself.

There’s a verse in the Bible about gaining the world but losing your soul that seems like it might apply.

It’s not about Mac vs Windows. If he had chosen to do it on Windows from the get-go, I’m sure that it would still be an amazing, paradigm-changing application. Besides personal preference, there’s really not that much difference between the Mac OS and Windows. But Keith chose Mac (praise be!) and so Mac it is. Windows users need to understand that he simply cannot (as in, it is impossible to achieve) Scrivener in two platforms.

So not only would I not support a Windows version, I would caution strongly against it. I would lobby against it. I would pay to keep it Mac only, to keep Keith focused on his writing and this one, wonderful application. The day he beings work on a Windows version is the day that Scrivener loses its most valuable asset. I hope that day never arrives.

As far as a Windows version goes, this is the way I see it: I, personally, will almost certainly never (I hate saying “never” because you can never be 100% sure of anything) work on a Windows version, for the reasons terceiro gives. I enjoy working on Scrivener, but it’s part of a bigger picture where I get to be a teacher during the day, a software developer by night (hmm, sort on anti-superhero) and a writer when I finally get off my ass (26 days and 50,000 words to go, NaNo…).

A Windows version would mean either:

  1. I learn how to program for Windows and create a Windows version myself. This would be a two year endeavour, during which time the Mac version would suffer.
  2. I hire a programmer. Scrivener has made me a nice bit of money which I intend to put towards a house in the future (still renting…), but a professional programmer’s salary would take a big chunk of it!

In either case, there would the associated problem of trying to keep both versions in sync, so that a new feature added to one was also added to the other.

So, this is why I generally think a Windows version unlikely. The only circumstance in which a Windows version would happen is if I meet a Windows programmer who is into writing, into Scrivener, on the same wavelength as me and who would like to spend a year or so developing a program without any payment at the end of which I would get a share of his or her profits!

All the best,


To be honest though, I’m not sure you’d have much of a moral claim if they developed it independently (as long as they didn’t try to call it Scrivener).

There is such a Windows application. It’s called PageFour (http://www.softwareforwriting.com/); it’s good, it’s straightforward, it’s even recommended by Keith on his own main product page.

Granted, it’s probably 18 months behind where Scrivener is now, but a Windows developer starting from scratch would have to work hard to catch up with it.

PageFour came before Scrivener, just for the record. :slight_smile:

Rayz - absolutely. There is a part of me that wishes I could get someone to do the Windows version, because at some point someone will do it and get lots of money for it. I’ll be gutted. Actually, I think I could argue a moral claim (if, for instance, it had an index card in the inspector and an “Edit Multiple” feature or something). But a legal claim… None. (I am now reminded of the “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” episode I saw yesterday where three guys go to see a lawyer about something: “So you’re saying we have no legal recourse? Ahhh… No legal recourse. Say no more…”)