Importing & Using Forms

I am working on a few templates and doing some great not writing, but in the process I have been trying to develop a few forms that have a little more structure and areas that can be, for lack of a better way of saying it, “filled in” once they have been imported and placed in the template folder. I am using PDF’s because they have that “FORM” feel to them but am open to suggestions is the PDF will never work.

Any idea on how to import a PDF and then be able to fill in the blank so to speak?


The PDF viewer that we use cannot interact with forms, unfortunately. So what you’d have to do is open the PDF in a viewer that can, such as Adobe Reader (but I’m assuming if you’re making your own PDF forms, you have Acrobat Pro, which will work just as well). There is a button in the footer bar, right-hand side, for opening the PDF in the system default viewer. The only snag I ran into was with Reader, it seemed to lock itself out of saving the form directly over the original PDF file. When I tried with Acrobat it worked better. Once you save the PDF and close it, the stuff you filled in should be visible in Scrivener (though you may have to hit the refresh button in the footer bar to see them). It’s worth a try anyway!

Note you can put whatever you want into a project’s document template folder, even PDFs. So yes, so long as you find a good workflow for filling in the PDFs, this would be a viable approach, and could replace the example text based sheets we provide in the built-in fiction templates.

You can get around this by loading a different document in Scrivener’s editor before saving the modified PDF in Reader. I don’t know why, but Reader seems to be really finicky about what it thinks are locked files.