Exporting documents based on label/status

I’m sure I’ve seen this mentioned somewhere on the forum, but couldn’t find it.

It would be nice to be able to select the documents to be exported based on their Label and/or Status.

As a quick illustration, I have a document which I am working on that has some confidential material. Ideally, I would generate a public and a confidential draft from the same project file, instead of maintaining two documents. I have used Labels to mark certain documents as confidential. I could see fiction writers having a similar interest in exporting only documents with a specific status (ToDo, First, Revised, etc).

The implementation is a bit hard to figure out. It would be best if one could select a Label or Status, then use Include and Exclude buttons to check/uncheck documents in the export dialog.

Maybe Version 2 could expand the Content tab, providing more options where there is currently Include All and Include None? I’m thinking something like:

Label : (All|None|List...)    Status (All|None|List...)  [Include]  [Exclude] 

…where Label and Status are dropdown lists defaulting to All, and Include/Exclude are buttons. Thus the default behavior would for Include/Exclude would be the same as Include All/Include None, though not as nicely named :slight_smile:

Anyways it seems like a useful Export feature, though making it simple and intuitive will be difficult.

Right now you can just use the “Include in Export” flag - remember you can invert this. So, you could mark all public documents with “Include in Export”. And whenever you need to export the confidential draft, you would just select “combine documents… Not marked for export” instead of “Marked for export”.

Using “Not for Export” really isn’t much better than checking each item individually at export time.

Inverting using “Combine documents” doesn’t do what I want (unless I am using it wrong), because it toggles to export only the unmarked documents.

What I want is to add (some) unmarked documents to the documents already marked for export, in an easy one-click operation.

I thought saved export options would work, but that appears to save all of the options except Contents.

Anyways, hardly a critical issue, but something to chew on for the future. After Rayz’s perceptive comment about the Scrivener project being analogous to the ‘source code’ of the book (with Export Draft being analogous to compiling, as it ‘builds’ the book), it occurred to me that Labels and Status could be useful parameters in controlling the ‘build’.

Having generated another document release today, this issue came up again.

I should begin by demonstrating why the ‘Include in Export’ method doesn’t work for me. I have a project of roughly 70 text items; 20 of these are labelled Confidential, and have Include in Export unchecked in the Inspector pane. When I generate a Confidential document, I select these 20 documents in the Export Draft dialog and perform the export, which works fine – but now the Confidential items now have Include in Export checked in the Inspector pane, and I must go back and manually un-check each one.

Would it be possible to save (in the project file) different selections of items for export? This would have to be in addition to the existing ‘save export settings’ mechanism – perhaps additional buttons (Save, Include from Saved) near Include All and Include None?

That said, I still believe that being able to select (or de-select) items for export based on Label and Status would be quite useful. This would have to be non-destructive, so that choosing “select all with label ‘Completed’” followed by “deselect all with status ‘Confidential’” would result in the selection of all items that are completed but not confidential.

BTW, my boss is now a Scrivenite – we’re looking forward to the release :slight_smile:

Depending on whether or not you have the confidential documents interleaved with the rest of the Draft, you could change the flags in a bulk fashion. Say you put all of your confidential documents into one folder, select that folder in the binder, press ⌘1 to bring up Outliner, and then ⌥-click on any one of the checkboxes in Outliner (note, use the button with three dots in the header label rows to show visibility of the Exclude in Export flag, if necessary). All visible items will be disabled.

Granted you still have to manually turn them on and off depending on what type of export you are doing, but this is certainly easier than clicking each one individually. And, this doesn’t work at all if the confidential files are scattered all across the Draft. Hopefully in a future version, Outliner will allow dynamic selection like the Corkboard will in the next beta. Then you could search for the label, select all, and be off.


I’m still a little confused as to why the existing functionality doesn’t work for you. Can’t you have those that are confidential with “Include in Export” unchecked, and those that are public checked, and then when you want to export both just select “Combine documents… All”? The only disadvantage of this is that if you have documents in the Draft folder that you never want exporting, then they get exported regardless. But you can still have folders that aren’t exported, or text groups, so it is still pretty flexible.

I’m not saying that an export by label or status feature isn’t a good idea. But I think that would be more of a 2.0 thing, to be honest. Your needs in this regard are somewhat esoteric - that is, esoteric in terms of what Scrivener was designed for. Scrivener’s “Export Draft” feature was designed for getting manuscripts out in one long block, based on the assumption that everything in the Draft would be geared towards being included in that export except from some choice notes or group documents that could be manually excluded.

So, definitely one for the cloudy future, I’m afraid.


P.S. Thanks for turning your boss onto Scrivener!

Unfortunately they are interleaved. In some cases a single paragraph is isolated (by splitting the doc) and marked as Confidential. In general, a section will contain a a few overview paragraphs followed by a few Confidential paragraphs.

This does work, but only for two versions of the document. I admit I was simplifying in my example.

We have a lot of overlap in our technology documentation for a general audience (e.g. sales), a technical audience (medical personnel), a business audience (investors) , and an internal audience (developers) – the level of detail increases for each audience. I’ve been using a single Scrivener project with labels determining the audience level for each text item. It’s not perfect yet, but much better than managing four different documents.

Yeah, I have the bad habit of using software in ways for which it was never intended :slight_smile: I think using labels and status to define export rules would be generally useful (e.g. “all completed short stories” or “all introductory chapters”), but agree that it is not necessary. Even with my odd usage, I only encounter it with one document, and then only every month or so when a new version is generated.

What is far more valuable is the ability to generate customized one-off documents from the master project – existing content can be selected and exported to RTF, which is then tweaked for a specific audience (e.g. grant writer, customer, new employee, etc) and sent out. Scrivener may have been meant for fiction, but it has proved to be quite a powerful application!