Is it possible to change formats?

I formatted a Scrivener file as a novel but now discover that I should have formatted it as a short story. I’ve already added a fair amount of research so I would like to know if there is a way to simply switch the entire file to a Short Story format.

Your help is appreciated.

Hi Laurence,

Yes, this is possible, as all projects templates were initially created from the “blank” template, so you can do anything with them. You can’t just “apply” one template to another, but you can adjust the settings. So that we can give you the best instructions for your particular project, could you please take a screenshot of the “Draft” folder of your project in the binder, so that I can see how it is structured? That way I can tell you what you will need to do to get things formatted as you want the quickest.

All the best,

Thanks for the reply Keith. I’ve just sent the screenshot to you via private message. Please let me know if it is what you were looking for



Hi Lawrence,

Yes, that’s perfect, thanks. It looks as though you only have one document inside the Manuscript folder that has any text inside it - presumably that is your story, or part of it. That should make things easy. Here’s what to do:

  1. Create a new project based on the Short Story template.

  2. In that project, select the “First Page Header” document and drag it to the top of your Manuscript folder.

  3. Go to File > Compile… in the short story project you just created.

  4. Click on the “Format As” pop-up list and select “Manage Compile Format Presets…” from the bottom.

  5. This will bring up a panel. Click on the “+” button to create a new preset and call it “Short Story”. Then click on “OK”.

  6. You can now close and delete the short story project you created in step (1) and return to your original project.

  7. Your original project should now have the “First Page Header” document at the top of the Manuscript folder. Now, underneath that, create a new folder and call it “Story”.

  8. Move the scene document that contains the text of your story into the “Story” folder. (If you have more than one scene document with text in, move them all into that folder, but I only saw one in the screenshot.)

  9. Now delete the other folders and files from the Manuscript folder (the “Parts” and “Chapter” folders and any blank scene documents).

  10. When you want to Compile your story, go to File > Compile and from the Format As menu select the “Short Story” preset that you created in step (5) - it will be in the menu ready for selection. (In step 5, you created a preset that copied all of the settings the short story template uses for Compile.)

All of the above will convert your existing project so that you can compile a short story easily. Another way, however, would be to drag the text document from this project to a new short story project, and also drag any research across (from binder to binder).

Hope that helps!

All the best,

Thanks Keith,

This is very helpful and very much appreciated.

May you be inundated with publishing contracts!

  • Lawrence