Don't let folders affect page view

Hello, How can I disable the empty lines in my script page view that come from the folders? Thank you,

Disabling the Include enclosing folder text in scrivenings mode setting, in the Behaviors: Folders & Files preference pane. That won’t get rid of empty slots from subfolders, within the session, but it will remove the empty slot at the top.

Something you can try further, if you never use the folder in a practical way when compiling (i.e. it exists just for your own benefit), is switching off the Include in Compile checkbox on your folders. Then you can select a larger chunk of hierarchy at the top level, and use the Navigate ▸ Open ▸ with Compilable Subdocuments menu command. That will strip out all non-compilable content from your Scrivenings session.

Thank you. This is incredibly convoluted. Do I have to select “don’t include in Compile” for every Folder? Shouldn’t that be the default? What is the rationale for having Folders be physically present in the final draft? They’re an organisational unit, not a part of composition.
I’m a professional screenwriter and I’ve chosen Scrivener for its unsurpassed outlining and labeling abilities, but this is inane, IMO.

Many users want the organization to be part of the output, non-fiction writers especially. Even fiction writers like myself will use folder names as chapter and part titles.

If I may suggest, one workaround would be to set up an empty folder with “include in compile” turned off, For example, you might call it “Invisible Folder”. Move that folder to inside your Template Sheets folder. Now you will be able to create a new folder from Project > New From Template > Invisible Folder . If you like, you can assign it a keyboard shortcut in System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts .

Hope this helps!

In screenplays it is a big nuisance, because the format has to be pristine – just scene headers and scenes.

Good idea, thank you!

You’re welcome!

Still, and not solely to have the last word :wink:, I have to say it would make much more sense for folders to be excluded from the content and leave that to text units – which, in themselves, can also serve as folders. Thus, the non-fiction or Chapter aficionados could have a deep structure reflected in output, and those who use folders to organise their screenplays and novels wouldn’t have to worry about workarounds. Both texts and folders can hold other texts, why not make their function complementary instead of the same.


A folder is in fact a text unit (it can contain text of its own) with an icon that just makes it look like a folder.

If you are talking about how the folders look in the editor alone, how does that impact on the pristine look of what you finally compile (as the folders don’t have to be compiled)? You are the only one who sees the work as it is being written, aren’t you, and the compiled format will include elements (such as headers and footers) that aren’t present in the editor anyway?

If you don’t like folders and don’t want them to be included in the project, why not structure the script so that it doesn’t use folders at all? Would that not remove the issue completely?

If you use folders in the binder but don’t want to see them in the editor, you can omit them from the editor by not selecting them from the binder: just select the files you want instead.

Slàinte mhòr.

Hello JoRo.

I know all this, but the point stands. As for the reason why I have to see “pristine format” in the editor it is: because in screenwriting the page count is very important and including empty segments from folders messes it up.
Additionaly, you want to keep control over how your page looks (cut sentences, split dialogs etc.)

It is true I can see it in the editor once I click “don’t include” at all 20+ folders forming the structure of my script, or “don’t select them” and then, each time I want to check page count, select the display option AmberV mentioned. It is extremely cumbersome for an app so expensive and full of features.

I don’t know what problem would that cause users who want their organising tiers be included in the compile if that would be the function of texts whereas folders would remain invisible. To each their own!

Please don’t depend on Page View to show you how your script will look compiled. Scrivener is not a WYSIWYG system. Page View is only ever a rough guide to how a manuscript will look in final form, as I learned to my sorrow while trying to format the front and back matter for my first novel release. Only a test compile is reliable.

Hope this helps!

Thank you, Silverdragon. That is something the developers need to look into, if Scrivener is ever to be a true competitor to professional screenwriting apps – which is a pity, as it already outperforms them in other areas.

Well something to consider, as is the case with any menu command in a Mac program: if you anticipate using it a lot, then put a keyboard shortcut on it. If you don’t do too much customisation along those lines, consider using the F1-12 keys. They are easier to remember, and software rarely uses them.

I really don’t think punching F4 or whatever after clicking on Draft is a high price to pay. I probably switch group view modes many dozens of times per day, and that’s about as much effort per instance as that. You’re using a filter that has a dedicated feature built for it! When I need to create a custom filtered Scrivenings settings I nearly always have to go through a little setup to get to that point. Not that you’d ever hear me complaining about it though—personally I consider this stuff a big part what makes Scrivener such a fine environment for gathering material and writing.

That said, if you’re mainly doing this a few times a day to get a page count, in most cases you are looking for: Project ▸ Statistics…, set to use “Accurate (Slower)”. This will run a background compile which is used to calculate the page count.

The text in your editor does not represent the printed output, as others have noted. It’s primarily an aesthetic option for those that prefer the look. One can use it for page estimations, but that’s about it. If you’re worried about the minor addition of twenty lines to your page count, if it even impacts it at all, consider what widow & orphan protection will do, or sentence split avoidance in dialogue, or adding dialogue continuation markers, or adjusting a column of text into dual dialogue—etc.

Thank you for your input and ideas! Indeed, I should use a dedicated shortcut.

I sense that you consider me fussy, but after years of writing screenplays in WYSIWYG apps, seeing stupid additional blank lines between my scenes is just extremely distracting. And I don’t think many writers like being distracted.

I still believe folders shouldn’t leave a mark on a compiled draft. It makes no sense when you can have texts performing the same function. I’m not really interested in arguing that point further, because it seems obvious to me.

You have given me a lot of help, thank you. I know how to achieve what I wanted.

There are plenty of WYSIWYG and dedicated screenwriting applications out there. Features that you find useless or annoying are essential to many other users, just as features like screenwriting elements are useless or annoying to them.

Scrivener’s greatest strength is its ability to accommodate many different genres and many different approaches.


Yes, apart from those it doesn’t.
I’ve just discovered that when you set a folder’s “include in compile” to “no” then it does the same to the first document in the folder. And when you set the document to be included in the compile, it turns the folder to be included, too.
So, no, there’s no way for Scrivener to do that, it seems.

Could you post some instructions on how I should see a result like that? What you are describing isn’t intentional behaviour. Here is what I tried:

  1. Created a new blank project.
  2. Pressed ⌃⌥⌘B to focus the binder.
  3. Pressed ⌥⌘G to group the selected started document into a new folder.
  4. Pressed ⌘2 to switch off Corkboard view and clicked the “Include in Compile” icon in the footer bar, so that it now has an ‘X’ in the corner of the page instead of a checkmark.
  5. Pressed ⌥⌘↓ to select the first subdocument of the folder.

The footer bar indicates the item is included in compile, as expected. This can be double-checked in the inspector, as well as the contents manifest when compiling, where the folder will be correctly indicated as excluded.

Of course, Amber.

Screenplay project.

In the binder in the “Screenplay”:

Folder "Act 1

in it, nested folder, “The arrival”

In it, a scene.

Now, in the Inspector, when you set “The arrival” to not compile, it does the same to the scene.
And the other way around, setting it in the scene, affects the folder, too.

The first scene and the folder seem to be fused as far as “include in compile” option is concerned.

Thus, there is no way to make folders not appear as empty lines, and mess up the page-count, in Scrivenings.

Hmm, there shouldn’t be anything fundamentally different with what you describe and what I’m trying. Test the attached project, if you click between the index card and the background (the folder), does the include state change in the inspector—and can you modify the settings cleanly?

What you are describing should be theoretically impossible. For one thing the inspector cannot change the details of more than one item at a time. What you might need to be looking out for is what your inspector is even inspecting. Are you sure you are inspecting the scene card, as printed in the inspector heading right below the tab buttons? (93 KB)

Hello Amber,

I’ve tested it again. It seems that when I click the folder in the binder, it is actually impossible to select it for the inspector and the inspector was still showing settings for the scene, and not the folder. To select inspector for the folder you actually need to set the folder to the index card view, it’s impossible in the scrivenings mode, for a reason I don’t know but I’m sure now that someone finds that very useful and what do I know :wink:
So, to set folder not included in the compile, you also need to switch each of the folders to the index card view.

I sincerely thank you for your trouble, but this is WAY too deep than I would like to go with my everyday professional software. :frowning:

I’m a writer, not a coder.

Another thing you might be looking at is that corkboard/outliner views don’t discard your progress or state within them, when switching away. So if you come back later on and “scene” is still selected, then that is what will be inspected. That’s why I was asking about clicking on the background of the corkboard to double-check—since that is a more predictable on/off behaviour than clicking back and forth between folder and child in the binder.

To be fair you did disable the option that inserts the folder into the top of the Scrivenings session. :slight_smile: That capability is not only there for storing chapter notes or whatever you want, but so you can access the inspector from within a session. Otherwise, as you say, there is no representative of the folder in a session left, and it’s impossible to “deselect” from a text editor in the same way we can on a corkboard/outline by clicking on the background.