Dissertation workflow

(I am sure this has been addressed. Feel free to simply send me to the right posts.)

New to Scrivener.

I am using it to write a dissertation. Once I compile a chapter draft and send it to Word, I need to format the piece to the specifications of the university. I have a page number target I am trying to hit, so I need to do this. All of the formatting takes quite a while.

Now each of my readers makes comments and I need to make changes to the draft, or parts of it. To avoid all of the reformatting, I am tempted to just remain in Word. But this is limiting, of course.

Should I bring the whole chapter back into Scrivener then split it up? How do I keep track of the parts I change? I am afraid of mixing everything up and having a Frankenchapter on my hands.

Thanks for any tips,

Others more experienced with dissertations may chime in here, but for your purposes it’s truly best to stay in Word once you’ve exported. For one thing, the one stirling feature of Word is change tracking (which, of course, you won’t really need 8) ).



You might try playing with Scrivener’s snapshot feature. It works on a per-document basis. So if you cut things up according to how they are edited, you can keep sections up to date, but easily go back and review alternate states. Snapshots can be titled, so you can store the name of the individual who provided feedback in the title for the snapshot.

Readers are the bane of many dissertators, and you can bet that few of them know how to Track Changes in a Word file. So perhaps you should stick to Scrivener a while longer. Enter the reader comments in the Notes panel? Or just stick into your draft a bold-face reminder: see Reader A, p 123?

If you know you’re going to make many revisions, structural and stylistic, you’re still in a draft state of composition, and Scrivener is a far more powerful drafting tool than Word. (Personally, I prefer Pages for late formatting, and its Track Changes is better than Word, imho.)

Good luck, and I hope you have humane readers who do NOT insist that your work exactly parrot all of their suggestions for revision. Final decisions should be up to you. It’s your book!

Thanks everyone,

I also discovered that there is a lot of information on the Forum regarding my kind of work, if I enter “academic” in the search function. I’ll browse through those and check back here for any new posts.