Editor needs Scrivener?

While I"m a bit ahead of myself, I am wondering if there is any way that I can somehow send my editor a Scrivener file - for her to somehow edit - then send back to me that I can simply put back in place with all the edits…but easily?

Right now, we use Word, and I"m moving away from that to Scrivener…

What do you all do about this?

That might depend on your editor and her willingness to try a slightly different routine. I’m very happy when my writers send work as raw Scrivener files, but I mainly do developmental editing where having the various moveable block sections is useful, not the finer-grained editing of a final draft where a more established mark-up feature (as in Word or Nisus) is needed.

Having said that, some shareable mark-up is possible in Scrivener - there are posts on this board by more knowledgeable users explaining how - but the impression I get from my fellow editors is that, in general, only those who are already familiar with Scrivener are willing to make the effort.

Hmm…so then am I to understand that most editors do NOT use Scrivener - they either don’t own it or have the chops to provide their services within that app…so they stick to MSWord?

If so, then dang! I so much like the app…but that would mean that I’d have to export out the MS, convert it to Word, send it to my editor, await the edited version back, accept the edits, save, then…what? Import the fully finished Word doc back into Scrivener…

Sounds like too much effort…sigh…

Does anyone using Scrivener have a workable alternative?

The first thing is, ask your editor. If they have it and are willing to accommodate it, great!

In my experience, it all depends on what the editor is doing and what their place in the overall publishing workflow is. In my experience writing IT books, most of the reviewers and editorial staff use Word because a) it has the revision tracking/commenting/multi-contributor functionality needed to allow a document to undergo multiple editing/review passes and come back to the author through one or multiple round trips and still be able to accept/reject individual edits and b) they typically have a strict set of styles to use so that the document can be easily poured into the layout/typeset software.

For a locally hired editor who is not part of the publishing flow, that could be completely different.

It all depends on what your editorial process looks like. For a technical book where the structure doesn’t change much from the approved outline, multiple trips in/out of Scrivener would probably be too much overhead. I’d create the initial drafts in Scrivener, then export to Word to begin the review and editorial process, and handle all the editing there. For a novel, where I might have to do radical rewriting/restructuring, the time spent importing a Word document back into Scrivener could end up saving me a TON of time performing the necessary edits and structural changes within a tool that is designed to make that easy (Scrivener) instead of fighting to do it in Word.

I’m an editor–10 years in books (12 if you count Harvard Business School Press, which I try not to do), the past 18 years editing a magazine–and I’ve been using Scrivener since it was in Beta almost 10 years ago. But I came to Scrivener as a writer, not an editor; it didn’t dawn on me until around 2007-8 that I could do all my editing, acquiring, everything related to the magazine, exclusively in Scrivener, right down to the final Export to Word file that production would then upsuck easily into InDesign. All I had to do is wean my authors from using Track Changes. Which I did by royal-we fiat.

That being said, most editors can’t do this, especially on book-length manuscripts. Most editors are stuck in the lingua franca of publishing, which is Word. You can always ask an editor to switch to a different platform for your convenience, but don’t be surprised when she politely declines: A book editor might work with 20 writers in a year; he’s likely, in these Lean-and-Mean Times, to be a freelancer paid by the project. Having to learn a new platform for an author’s convenience is money out of her pocket, and editorial pockets are pretty slim these days, just like everyone else.

I don’t own Word anymore, but I’ve got Apple Pages, and it’s serviceable as a go-between with the Word World and Scrivener. I’ve been doing back-and-forths on a contract for my next book, between my agent and the publisher, and all the Track Changes came through fine. We’ll see how it works when the editing begins, but if Pages isn’t up to the task, I’ll buy a copy of Word. Because for better or worse that’s an editor’s native tongue.