First impressions, a question and some notes

I’m most impressed with my first look at Scrivener, have taken the tutorial, looked at the menus (but no further yet). However I’d like some feedback on the following.

I’m frequently writing in collaboration with another writer. Currently we’re both using Word and we’re passing files back and forth over the net. We’re heavily using Word’s “Track Changes” feature — a fast way to see what he’s added, deleted, approve or reverse his changes.

Unfortunately he’s on Windows. We’re wondering if there’s a PC-based program that might work well in tandem with Scrivener. Or alternatively a methodology where we could continue to use Word and Scrivener in tamdem. From what I’ve seen so far, there’s an unstated assumption the Scrivener user is working alone. But I might be wrong.

Here’s my notes while doing the tutorial and exploring the menus.

  1. Once I drag a URL webloc file into the Reference area of the Inspector the original disappears from the Finder and it would appear I have no way of getting it out of Scrivener.

  2. As Part2 Organization of the tutorial reveals ,“There is no real difference between text and folder documents aside from their icons…” is definitely odd. There doesn’t appear to be any way of indicating a “folder” also contains text. While you describe how this works, you don’t give any examples of its utility, how this can play to advantage. Or is this just an artifact of the Unix file structure, no more than an oddity?

  3. I’m confused about the Footnote and Annotation feature. The instructions in Step16 are, "You can also just click “Annotationâ€

Hi Morley,

Hmm, I’m not sure what you mean here. The original most certainly should not disappear from the Finder, as Scrivener does nothing to the file. In fact, if it did, when you double-clicked on the item in the Inspector, it would not be able to open it, as the References pane just makes references to files on disk - it does not copy them into the project. You might want to double-check this.

There is a discussion on the differences between folders and files in the Help file under “The Binder” and also in the FAQ on this forum. Scrivener 1.1 (in beta as 1.08 at the moment - please see the Beta Testing forum) does now indicate if a folder contains text. This has nothing to do with any Unix file structure as the folder system in the binder is entirely virtual and there is no corresponding structure on disk. Rather, it is the way I designed this to work (with a lot of user feedback on an earlier Scrivener iteration, and a little inspiration from the program Mori). Files and folders are really just visual indicators. You may wish a chapter container to look like a folder but files within it - scenes, for instance - to be represented with a text icon. Later you may decide that one scene needs expanding into a chapter and that you now want to represent it as a folder, or vice versa. It also allows for items to be opened in different ways - with the corkboard as the default view or the actual text, for instance. There are a lot of advantages in the way this works and no disadvantages to my knowledge.

[quote]
3. I’m confused about the Footnote and Annotation feature. The instructions in Step16 are, "You can also just click “Annotationâ€

I swear it did happen while using the tutorial. Was just an unimportant weblog file. Have since dragged another weblog file into a new project of my own and the file remained in the Finder. Could be just a one-time glitch.

I’m in the midst of my 2nd day writing with Scrivener so I’m still getting used to it. I plan to rerun the tutorial tomorrow some time.

Here’s what’s happening for me. I’m writing a series of pages for a text heavy website. I’m currently converting the draft of the page into a folder and then dragging various notes related to that page into that folder. Then convert the main page folder back to a text icon.

Yes I could do a separate project for each page of the site and use the Research folder for the notes. But the various pages are related. I want to be able to drag a note from Page1 to Page2 if I need to.

I can’t do that now but I could if pages could accept items without first being converted to a folder.

I’m using Scrivener 1.03 and it’s too early for looking at a beta. Hope the above scenario is helpful.

[quote=“KB”]

[quote=“wanapitei”]
3. I’m confused about the Footnote and Annotation feature. The instructions in Step16 are, "You can also just click “Annotationâ€

[quote=“wanapitei”]

[quote=“KB”]

[quote=“wanapitei”]
3. I’m confused about the Footnote and Annotation feature. The instructions in Step16 are, "You can also just click “Annotationâ€

Yes, since Scrivener is intended to be a drafting tool, the annotation tool is intended to fill the role of scribbling between lines of print-out, or in the margins. It is also useful as a way to block “delete” chunks of text that you aren’t sure if you really want to get rid of or not. Just select a paragraph, hit the annotation button, and it won’t be in the export—but it is still there if you change your mind. Using the Ghost mode in conjunction with that makes it easy to quickly proof how a section will read with the deletes committed. When collaborating, the Find Annotations tool lets you skip from comment to comment, and even narrow it down to a specific kind of comment if people initial their remarks, or note what type of remark it is.

And while not its intended use at all, I’ve even used it as a formatting feature in the FAQ. When an answer is updated or new, I mark it as such with an annotation, and leave them visible in the export phase. It makes for a coloured, bracketed entry.

Thanks Mark and AV for your comments about annotation and ghost mode.

I’ve searched the menu commands, the Help files and the online FAQ for “ghost” and have no hits. Could ghost mode be in the beta for 1.1? I’m currently using Scrivener 1.03.

Kind regards,

You deduced correctly. Ghosting is a feature which has come out since 1.03. The latest beta, 1.08, is very stable and you might consider switching to that. Ghosting is just one of the many improvements that have been made.

You don’t have to turn it into a folder item for this at all. You can drag a text item into another item just by dropping it on top of that item (a square will appear around the item to indicate it is a drop target).

As for the beta - don’t mistake it for horribly untested beta software. It isn’t rewritten or anything. It adds a few new features and fixes a lot of bugs that are present in 1.03, so it is actually more stable than the version you are using rather than less so.

All the best,
Keith

Yikes! You’re right. I was watching for the positioning symbol to offer a secondary position. Might I humbly suggest adding this instruction to the tutorial. For me this is an excellent feature.

Will do so.

Kind regards,

The Tutorial is just meant as a quick guide with the basics - the rest, such as this, is covered in the Help file.
All the best,
Keith

Actually, I think that’s already in the tutorial - I’ve never looked at Scriv’s help files, but the fact that any document can be a container for other documents was one of the things that sold me on Scrivener when I first launched it and went through the tutorial.