I have now worked with styles and set preferences, but I have found no place to set or manage paragraph indents.

I like block paragraphs in my basic text style and only get indented paragraphs.

I have an indent one and indent two style and can’t move from 2 to 1 withouth doing crazy deletes and working around the text.

Is there any tool that serves the function of word’s format paintbrush? I have dug into the tutorial, user guide and forums.

Tom Wilson

Pop the ruler down with Cmd-R, and check out the “Styles” menu on the left. This lets you save favourite styles and apply them later on with a single menu command.

In addition to this tool, you can also use Cmd-Ctrl-C to copy the current ruler settings, and Cmd-Ctrl-V to paste them elsewhere.

Oh, and on the Ruler to way to set a full block indent is to make sure both the horizontal line and the indent arrow are moved over to the same position. By fiddling with these two you can make indent, reverse-indent, and block indent styles.


Thank you. This gets me further on.

Are the sytle and ruler setting independent of each other? Do the ruler settings change to conform to a style change?

Another troubling thing is often when I select a para and apply a style from my list to it, the whole page of paragraphs change. (and when I finally reverted to word to do my styles work, I found that characteristic stuck in word’s paragraph mark!


It’s better to think of the OS X style menu as a format painter than an actual word processor style system. All it does is store your favourite settings and then apply them to whatever you have selected (or the current paragraph if there is no selection). It does not store an internal database of styles in the text itself, so changing the parameters of the favourite will do nothing to existing text. It is a one-direction-only affair.

That said, all the style menu is doing is saving ruler and font settings (you can select which to save, or both, when making a new one). So yes, styles are just ruler macros.

I have never seen that happen. You say you are selecting a single paragraph, choosing a style, and the whole document changes? Something doesn’t sound right about that. The only thing in Scrivener that has that kind of power is in the Documents menu, under Convert.

Weird! The only case in which I can think of this happening is if you’ve inserted a linebreak (option-command-return) rather than a paragraph break (return).

Also, when you add a style to the ruler, it asks you whether you want to include just the font formatting, or the ruler formatting, or both – after hitting “Add to Favourites”, you get checkboxes that say “Include the font as part of the style” and “Include the ruler as part of the style”. That way, you can apply font-based styles inside a paragraph that’s indented in a particular way with a ruler-based style.

For yet more convenience, you can use your OS X system preferences > Keyboard Shortcuts to assign keyboard shortcuts to your custom style settings in Scriv. Caveat: currently, such shortcuts will only work so long as you have the Ruler visible in the Editor pane of Scriv.