does F-12 options settings get saved in project template?

just wondering where i can set the default font for a project template. thanks.

and what would be “best practices” usage of loading and saving preferences from the options menu? are these preferences separate from the project template? (i guess “application wide” scope?).

as an aside, i think i’m making progress in understanding scrivener formatting a bit thanks to your kind help MM.

i think my confusion has been a result of formatting settings having different SCOPES:

  • application wide
  • project wide
  • document wide
  • paragraph wide
  • current selection wide
  • current cursor: next characters to be typed out

i think that’s all of the scopes. confirm?

oh and another quirk is that except for explicit commands that force conform of formatting on existing material, all format setting switches are “non-destructive”. it will only apply to new things that you create, what you already have will be left unchanged… as the manual states, none of the settings act like a “style sheet”.

it would have been helpful if these settings were organized strictly according to these scopes and labeled explicitly. it seems like they’re roughly organized this way but the exceptions and cross-pollinations make it hard for newbs to wrap their head around.

At the moment we don’t have a way of setting up a default format per project, there is just the global setting in F12 (and yes, everything in there is for the whole program, projects do not use any of these settings exclusively). Projects do have settings, but you interface with them in the menus, such as splitting the interface, that’s a setting, or toggling label colours to tint icons. These sorts of settings are saved into the template when you use the File/Save as Template… menu command.

Generally speaking this isn’t too much of a problem since most people use the compiler to clean up the formatting of the document on export. As you’ve probably found out, unlike programs like Word that mimic the printed page, you really don’t have to worry too much about formatting for most forms of writing. The idea with the global setting is that one would choose whatever they find a comfortable font and paragraph settings for writing with. What the thing looks like when you print or send it off to another program for final polish can be entirely different from that—and that is the part that is saved per-project, in the Compile settings.

So for most things, and how the program was designed to be used, it really shouldn’t matter much at all what your text looks like while you write. It can even be a huge mess of different formats pasted in from other programs.

On scopes, I suppose you could break it out that way, but it seems overly complicated to me. I think a key thing that can simplify that list is a bit is the knowledge that the text editor simply stores whatever formatting has been attached to any text within it. When a document is brand new, and there is no text yet, it will use the application settings to start off, but once you’ve done that every single character in the document can have its own formatting. There is no setting for that beyond what you do with the buttons and rulers. There are no “scopes” beyond that, the only important thing is that the literal text stores the formatting, be that five paragraphs, one, a sentence or a single letter of the alphabet.

To make it even simpler: Scrivener’s editor works just like Word, LibreOffice, WordPerfect and even WordPad in these regards. You select five words and make them bold and they will stay bold. If you type inside of that phrase the stuff you type in will be bold. If you copy and paste to another document it will remain bold. If you change Scrivener’s settings for new document formatting, they will remain bold (and using the old settings since the text stores the settings, not the document). That latter point is perhaps the only major difference, but even there the difference is exceedingly slim, since you can adjust Word’s “default formatting” by editing the file, and that won’t do a single thing to any of the many existing .docx files on your disk—only impact how new .docx files are made.

hi amberV,

thanks much for taking the time to respond in such detail.

haha… ok, i think i may be kinda turned around on scrivener settings then. i think if i started my time with scrivener from scratch, i would have encountered a lot less issues and got a lot less confused. but almost every project (maybe literally every project) that i’ve started, i’ve copied and pasted stuff from other sources and that might have lead to me thinking this is all more complex than it is.

i’m gonna take another stab at this over the weekend and see if i can see it afresh with new eyes.

so couple of clarifications:

  • F-12 options are not saved in a document or a project correct? so if i set up fonts to be a certain way and save the project template, if someone uses that template who has a different set of options configured, they’re going to see what they configured, not what i did?

  • so the big things that are saved in a project template are mostly about what’s set “structurally” inside of the binder right? (well also the compile settings but i’m just talking about the user enviro).

  • the one place that determines the settings for every new document that i create is F-12 options. is that correct? if so, i think i’m 80% to understanding…

thanks again. and yeah, gonna have to put aside what i thought was going on and try to unlearn what i thought i learned.


No they are not, and yes that means if two or more people edit a project they may all be making documents with different formatting, no different than if you make one document, then go in and change the font in Options, and then go and make a new document, they’ll have different formatting. The results of this kind of stuff is easy to clean up with the Documents/Convert/Formatting to Default Text Style… menu command, though. This takes existing formatted text and makes it look like the F12 settings.

Yes, I would say the Binder content and the export settings are the main things people look for in a template. Really though, a project template is a snapshot of the whole project at the point where it was saved, all the way down to the window position and shape.

Yes, for new documents created from scratch, that is how it works and there is no other factor that can change that. The only main exception is when the new document came from an existing document, either via import or duplication (including document templates).


once again, thank you very much. i think i got it!