"Include in compile" checked by default in metadata


I’ve noticed that on the metadata tab in the inspector, “include in compile” is checked by default on all the folders and documents in my project (including character sketches, places, etc.), but these documents are still not included in the statistics or when I press compile. How come they’re all checked by default, I thought only the manuscript would be?

I’m pretty new to Scrivener, I did do the tutorial, but am probably still missing a lot!




The basic default compilation is ‘Everything in Manuscript / Draft’ + anything you specifically add as Front and/or Back Matter. So having the default New Document template have ‘Compile’ ticked by default is a good idea. If the new document is under Draft, you’ll probably want to compile it; if it’s not in draft, the tick box will be ignored anyway.

You can arrange to compile documents outside the draft folder, but to do that, you use the Compilation dialogue itself (right hand side, under the Compile dropdown list you can choose Draft, or Current Selection, or one of your collections/saved searches.

You can alter the scope of the calculated statistics under Project > Statistics > Options. For example, if you wanted to count all the words in ‘Included’ documents anywhere in the project (i.e. both in and outside the Drafts folder) you could click in the binder and press cmd-a (so all documents are selected), then Project > Statistics > Option > Count Only Documents Marked For Inclusion: the results will be on the ‘Selected Documents’ tab.


Thanks! I got confused about every document being ticked as “include in compile” even when they weren’t in the manuscript/draft, like the character sketches or research folder. I wasn’t sure if I had to go through and manually untick this in all of them, but if they’re just ignored anyway I’ll just leave them as they are.

Thank you!

You’re very welcome!

There is rarely a need to bother with this checkbox for things that live outside of the Draft folder. In fact there is rarely a need to bother with it at all—it’s mainly there for those that wish to interleave notes directly along with material intended for output. It can be handy, for example, to have chapter notes at the top of a Scrivenings session rather than off in another folder that you have to pull up every time, or to insert notes from reader copies as separate files so you can track who wrote what, right within the scenes/sections they are referring to. Another usage is to develop experimental branches of outline you haven’t written up yet. Sometimes I’ll create “stub” documents that describe where I might want to flesh out a concept. I want to develop these ideas right in the context where they will be, but I don’t want them compiled until they are past the second draft phase. The ability to exclude experimental writings is quite useful for that.

The reason why everything has this checked by default, no matter where you create the file, is because it is the safest default. The above ways of working are not nearly as common as those who keep the Draft much more simply and exclusively devoted to what will compile. So given that, the odds are much higher that when someone moves a document into the Draft folder, they intend for it to output. If everything that originated from outside of the Draft was excluded by default, confusion would erupt over why “half of my book doesn’t ever compile!” and we’d hear no end of it on the forum. :slight_smile: