How do you use Label and Status fields?

I’ve been going round and round on how to best use the LABEL and STATUS fields, How does everyone else use them?


I use Label to indicate point of view character of a given scene. Since I write Romance, that’s pretty much hero and heroine, but I like to see the balance of scenes between them, and occasionally I do have a third party as the viewpoint character. I have Label color turned on pretty much every place it can be turned on.

With Status I’ve been using the default First Draft, Revised Draft, etc., but in truth that’s not enough for me because I can’t see that in the Binder at a glance the way I can Label. I use the Outliner when I start a story, but don’t go back and look at it often. The Synopsis that shows in the Inspector is enough for me once I get going unless some new idea hits me and I need to revise more than one scene in the Outline. I don’t use the Corkboard, which is where Status really shows. So I’m still changing the Status as I go along - it does show in the same Inspector panel as the Synopsis, but it’s small there at the bottom and not obvious with a glance at the Binder the way Label is,

I’ve been experimenting with using different icons on scenes in the Binder to represent Status and so far prefer that. I like the way they’re right there and obvious.

Thanks Tribalrose . I too would love to be able to ‘see’ (color, background whatever) both the status and the label in the binder at the same time. But then again, I do want my cake and to eat it too! :smiley:

Anybody else?

I like Labels a lot, but how I use them depends on the sort of project I am engaged with. And I have the option switched on to have label colors tint the Binder icons, so I can always see my labels at a glance. Highly recommended! Since Labels are also searchable by name, you can easily make smart collections based on them.

One sort of use I make of labels is to indicate the stage a given document is in — by which I mean stages prior to first draft completion — which might be something like Concept, Outline, Sketch, Drafted (or whatever). For longer form writing it is very helpful to be able to hone in on what needs attention. I also have utility labels for various other things — structural folders (which reflect story structure) and the like — For some kinds of projects chapter breaking is done after the fact, and so I maintain copies of a chapter break doc that I can move around. Same with a single return scene break. Both get a label all their own. These latter are probably unorthodox uses though.

Smart collections (based on project searches for combinations of my label names) let me focus down on various sub-classes of these label groups — whether it be for drafting or compiling.

I also keep around some labels that just have color names — for use in ad hoc classification.


P.S. I don’t use Status at all.

Yes, this would be great.

Like others, I use Labels for character/story arcs, which I find is handy during firs edit, and brilliant from second edit on. And, like gr, I don’t use Status, mainly because it’s not immediately available (without switching modes).

Aside: I’d also like to an indicator in the Binder that shows when there’s been some activity in the Inspector panels. I work with the Inspector hidden (to reduce visual clutter) and so have ended up not using it at all. So, where I should be using it for notes, for example, I instead create documents in my draft and change their icon, which gives me a visual cue.

That’s an old request, long rejected, though the request was to have status indicators (correlating to the tab indicator dots) available as a special column in the outliner (probably this is too much information, and too vague, for the binder).

Meanwhile though, you can set up some saved collection searches to take the mystery out of whether items have metadata. When clicking on the magnifying glass, take note of how you can search by specific fields. Keeping in mind that searching for a single asterisk (*) means “find everything with content”, when applied to a narrow field search, it means “find everything with any keywords” (or whatever you set the field to). So if you want to pull up a list of every single item in the binder with Document Notes, now you know how.

The other trick is to Option-click on fields in this menu. This will create a multi-field search, and thus one could set up an asterisk search for all available metadata fields they are interested in at once, and there is your “has inspector stuff” result.