How do I kill smart quotes in new writing?

I can’t get Scrivener 3 to STOP changing my flat quotes to smart quotes.

I’ve found the setting in preferences, but it STILL changes every new quote to a (usually wrong) not-so-freakin-smart quote.

Please help me kill this. I’m six seconds from switching to Dabble Writer, but I’m stuck with Scrivener for this first novel.

Found it in the ‘help’ search. That’s unusual. Usually searching is futile.

For anyone else having the problem, it’s buried (BURIED) in the ‘edit’ bar under ‘substitutions’. It’s not in ‘formatting’ or universal preferences because this-is-Scrivener-so-of-course-it’s-not.

So you used the feature which is provided to help you find the feature you looked for?

Then you found it in exactly the same place in the menus as it is in other Mac programs, such as TextEdit, Safari, Mail, Tinderbox, DevonThink etc etc.

Bad Scrivener. Bad.

BTW: The setting for new projects is in Preferences > Corrections, which is where all the preferences relating to Corrections are found.

Except that it SEEMS you can change it in preferences. But that doesn’t work. Nothing tells you that it didn’t take except that, of course, Scrivener keeps changing your quotes. Format is where it SHOULD be, but nope—not there.

No, it’s in ‘edit’ even though you’re not editing. That’s the problem, really. There are several places it COULD be. If you miss one, you’re hosed. I’d never have thought to look for it in the ‘edit’ drop-down. Why would it be there? It’s a formatting issue, not an editing issue.

I do have to commend the fact that the help-search function actually worked! So I’m not all down on it.

I’m still terrified to use Collections. I tried it once and I could never find out a way to un-collect things. I had to start all over with a new document. I searched everywhere I could think to find, but Scrivener is so counter-intuitive that I never found it.

Pro-tip: If people can make a fortune selling tutorials for your software, you screwed up.

Edit > Substitutions > Smart Quotes is native to macOS. See Safari, Pages, Numbers, Mail, Notes, Reminders, etc. It isn’t specific to Scrivener.

Cool. You followed a bad design format because?

I don’t care where Mac OS usually puts it. I don’t use most of those programs in such a way that I have to worry about it. It’s a formatting issue. Smart quotes are a formatting element, not an editing element. MacOS might put it in a stupid place, and probably for similarly dumb reasons. It doesn’t mean YOU have to.

And Collections. Arg. That debacle is the main reason I’m looking for something else. I spent at least an hour looking for a solution before giving up. It’s the main reason I don’t recommend Scrivener to friends (That’s a lie. I totally recommend Scrivener to friends because friends don’t let friends use Word).

Still though…collections…what a bummer.

Why would the Smart Quotes be in the Substitutions submenu of the Edit menu when that’s where it is in most other Apple programs?

The setting is in two places for a reason: you change your long-term preference for the default in Preferences; you toggle the setting on and off temporarily using the Edit menu without having to dig in the Preferences menu. You’ll find that’s a regular pattern for such settings.

Collections: when you highlight the collection in the binder, there is a minus sign next to it, which will ‘de-collect’ it.

BTW: There is absolutely no need whatsoever to give people money for tutorials[1], when there is a built-in tutorial which comes free with the program, and which you are recommended to use when you open the program for the first time.

The issue is this: Scrivener is very flexible and powerful — there is a reason why it is so widely recommended and why so many published authors swear by it — but it is designed round a few concepts which aren’t in standard Word Processors. These concepts give the program its power — if you ignore them and try to use Scrivener as if it were Word, then you’re just not getting the benefit from it.

The tutorial will only take you an hour or two to complete (less if you skim through it just to get the main ideas) and at the end of that you will have a good understanding of what the basic concepts and workflows are. Collections are one of those basic concepts, by the way.

So, seriously, the best thing you could do now is go to Help > Interactive Tutorial… and follow the instructions.

Read the documents START HERE and Key Concepts and then work your way through the The Basics folder. Most of what you find confusing now will become clear and you’ll be able to start getting the best out of the program very quickly — because, once you’ve got a grasp of these basic concepts, Scrivener is actually set out very logically in a way that is designed to fit round how you work. But you do need to understand those basic concepts first.

If you have any questions after that, please ask on here – there are plenty of experienced users who will try to help.

Hope this helps.

[1] I’m not saying that some aren’t good in their own right, just that the built-in tutorial takes you a long way to understanding how the program is designed and how it will work best. To coin a phrase… PRO TIP – don’t spend any money until you’ve tried the free stuff which is specifically designed to do the job. :smiley:

The Format menu lets people adjust text formatting attributes.

The Edit menu lets people make changes to content.

Changing a quote, dash, or case changes the actual content in the file (replacing one character with another), not the formatting. … bar-menus/

Think the proposition that people “make a fortune selling tutorials” doesn’t stand up to scrutiny; although wealth is a relative concept.

  1. The instal base for Scrivener is modest. Keith did give a figure in a thread some time ago, and you can tell from the company’s online accounts that, although healthy, the company isn’t wallowing in riches. Niche software. Say a million licences across all platforms?

  2. As we have seen from the forum, Twitter, and Facebook, a fair proportion of purchasers are very price sensitive. They question the initial cost of Scrivener. A lot of users are writers on modest incomes or students with little or no income. If such people have been anxious about the purchase price, they’re unlikely to have spare cash for additional tutorials.

  3. Reckon most people use the tutorial or read the manual or ask a fried or get free help on the forum/social media. Some might go on to buy a self-help book, which is far cheaper than a set of tutorials.

  4. Reckon most people who buy Scrivener, as aspiring writers, are reasonably smart (though not all). They use the trial version to know if they can get the software to work for them or not. If people can’t cope with the trial version, they’re unlikely to buy Scrivener, let alone then plough more money into tutorials. They are more likely to move to another app.

  5. I know a representative number of people who use Scrivener. I don’t know anyone who has bought an online tutorial, and certainly the number of people who are willing or able to pay for any kind of tuition is tiny.

  6. So of the estimated million licences (many of which will be single users on multiple platforms), how many would pay for tutorials? One per cent? Three per cent? Probably no more than 10,000—30,000 people spread worldwide, who can choose local resources or a handful of online courses. That’s spreading the market very thinly. And then the course provider has to cover the costs of preparing, advertising, and running the courses. A small market, with small turnovers, and modest profit margins, I think.

I am sure there are some very fine trainers, such as Gwen Hernandez, out there making money by running Scrivener courses (or courses for countless other apps, however simple or hard they might appear to be to use), but not making “fortunes”. Corporates pay a lot for IT training and have a lot of people to train, but Scrivener isn’t a corporate app, and it doesn’t have a big user base to train in the first place, let alone an affluent one.

Happy to be proved wrong. Hope Gwen and others are making millions from running Scrivener courses, but doubt they are.

Somebody is having a grumpy day. When the grump about smart quote menu placement ran aground on the shoals of reason, some other grumble (Collections) just took its place. Let’s let Di have it’s fit. I am sure it is therapeutic. We can just let that part go, people.

gr :unamused: