Export/Compiling to multiple files

Maybe this is a Feature Request, but does anybody know how to compile a project as multiple exported files? My use case is fairly simple: I have a novel, divided normally up into chapters within my binder. I would like to export the entire book, but have each chapter be its own file. (Example: chapter01.rtf, chapter02.rtf, chapter03.rtf…). This is useful for sharing the book with beta readers on Google Drive so they can read and comment on a single chapter at a time and not be overwhelmed by a massive document.

I know I can accomplish this task manually by compiling each chapter 1 by 1. But there are a lot of chapters in my book, so this becomes tedious!

Also, another reason I would like to do this is because I dynamically assign chapter numbers to my headings. Each chapter/folder in my binder is named CHAPTER <$W:chapter> . When I manually compile each chapter 1 by 1, every document exports with “CHAPTER ONE” as the title.

Ideally, I would love if there was a way to export the entire book, and have Scrivener create separate RTF/PDF/DOCX/Whatever files for each chapter.



There is no way that I know of.
I do it one document/chapter at a time. (Windows user, if it matters.)

As for the number that is not what it’d be should you compile the whole manuscript, this you can fix by selecting which document to compile in the selector that is above the documents list in the compile panel (right side). If you pick it from Draft/…/… and don’t check “Treat compile group as complete manuscript”, your chapter should have the right number.


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Oh, awesome. I didn’t know about the “Treat Compile Group as complete manuscript” button. I just tested it out (on Mac) and it worked. That’s very useful. Thank you!

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If you’d rather compile the whole thing at once, I think the best solution in your current case would be to figure out a third party editor that you could use to split your compiled document afterwards.

For Markdown and plain-text users, this has long been possible, thanks to how easy it is to scan through plain-text for markers and save each chunk to a new file. And that script can also use Pandoc to convert the chunk to .docx or whatever, so the fact that one starts out with plain-text doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the intended result.

For splitting word processing files though, it’s a lot messier to do that because they are comparably so complicated (.docx files are in fact a .zip file with a bunch of folders and files, kind of like an ePub). There are probably programs you can find that do that, but good luck finding them amidst the festering swamp of “Free Online Document Splitter!” websites that are surely funding themselves by scraping your data and selling it on to language model trainers or advertisers.

In fact if you search for split docx file -online -free macos to weed out all the garbage, guess what search results come up to the top? Scrivener’s Import and Split command. :laughing:

Well, while on that topic, there is one kind of silly but absolutely workable Scrivener-only solution:

  1. Compile using a Format you’ve set up to insert separators with a clear marker at each file split point. Something like 50 hyphens instead of a typical page break.
  2. In a new blank disposable project, use File ▸ Import and Split... and designate the 50 hyphens (or whatever) as the split marker.
  3. Select the whole lot of binder items and use File ▸ Export ▸ Files... to you preferred format.

That wouldn’t be too much of a bother to do now and then, but I’d probably look for something a bit more efficient if this was needed frequently.

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