Is Scrivener Now Just a Word Processor?

How. Very. True.

Scrivener now forces the use of styles. I suppose this is useful for those who want to go back and use styles in Microsoft Word. I don’t.

Even compiling to LaTeX requires the use of styles where LaTeX is and always has been plain text.
Compiling to Markdown gives you that same error message. Markdown is plain text as well.

I thought that the transition to a new editing engine would get rid of Mac OS anomalies, but instead it seems merely to be
adding styles.

Or maybe Scrivener is “just” a word processor now. That in itself is disappointing.

Um, where did you read this? It is totally incorrect. Styles are optional. By default everything you write in Scrivener is “No style” — how clearer does it need to be?! (and yes, some beta testers took this to be a personal insult to their writing “style”… :smiley: )

  1. Create a project.
  2. Add text.
  3. File->Compile
  4. Multimarkdown->Latex
  5. Basic Multimarkdown

Error Message: “No layouts from this format have been assigned to any of the section types in the project yet.”
Why would you need “section types” if you’re writing plain text?
The same error message appears in many of the compile options.
Additionally, you are asked to use styles to “Assign Section Layouts.”
Is there a way to automatically populate these layout sections? I haven’t been able to wade through the manual yet. V2 was four hundred pages or so. V3? Even if it’s half the size that’s still a lot of reading.
Worse, I’ve read in these forums comments from users suggesting they are going back and adding styles to years’ worth of projects so they can be used in v.3.
The horror!
Totally incorrect? Only if I ignore the error message, the urging to assign layouts, etc.

I think you are confusing and mixing things.
’Styles’ relate to different formatting of different parts of the text.
’Section types’ is about whether your documents are chapters, sections within chapters, etc. Structural parts.

Section types are not styles, they are the equivalent of compile levels in Scrivener 2. You assign them in the centre part of the compiler, it takes a few seconds:

I just tested your assertions. New blank project. Wrote some pure markdown, no styling. Compile and assign section types. Compiles to markdown fine. No styles. Find project attached. (48.3 KB)

Chapters, parts, sections, subsections, subsections, subsubsections and subsubsubsectibns (for all you Koma users out there) are different structural parts of a document that are styled differently in Word. And I guess, now in Scrivener.

So if I write,

Here is Some Text

I can make this text a part, a chapter, a section or one of the subs or even plain text depending on what style I use or don’t use.
I might want to make sections use bold text.
Or subsubsections use italics.
Or have some appear in the ToC while some do not.
But in all these case, styles are used.

So what I am mixing up?

Don’t guess, read and learn. You don’t need to use different kinds of structural parts, they can all be the same kind. And even if you have different kinds of structural parts, they can all be plain text, if you want that. No need to use styles. Not even in Word if you should decide to use Word.

Different structural parts can be formatted differently in Scrivener. That was true in Scrivener 2 and continues to be true in Scrivener 3. Alternatively, in both Scrivener 2 and Scrivener 3, you can just ship the formatting you used in the editor through to your output document. The method for achieving these output decisions has changed, but the same basic options remain.

Note that the word “styles” does not appear in the above paragraph. If you want to, you certainly can apply styles that will be recognized by Word. This is probably one of the most requested features for Scrivener 2 users. But it is entirely optional. In more than six months of using the Scrivener 3 beta as my primary tool, I don’t think I’ve used styles once. I simply don’t need them for my work.

“Just a word processor?” The core benefits of Scrivener have nothing to do with formatting, and everything to do with research, organization, and writing. That was true in Scrivener 1 and remains true now.


How. Very. Wrong.

Scrivener 2: No styles.
Scrivener 3: Optional styles. Or ignore them and use them as you did in Scrivener 2.

Scrivener 2: Override formatting for any document during Compile based on outline level.
Scrivener 3: Override formatting for any document during Compile based on formatting level OR arbitrarily.

“No layouts from this format have been assigned to any of the section types in the project yet.”

“Main text formatting will be based on how text appears in the editor.”

  1. These aren’t styles? If this is not an error message, it sure looks like one.
  2. You could avoid this in v2 by overriding fonts. That’s all I want to do. Text in the editor often drags along unwanted artifacts from its source (such as those files coming from a word processor, from a Windows machine, from email, etc.)

You’re in a dialogue called Section Layouts. The message actually says:

Screenshot 2017-11-23 18.57.10.png
It’s telling you what you can do (i.e. Assign a Layout to your Section Types) and what will happen if you don’t (you’ll just get the editor format instead) and it points you to the big button at the bottom of the dialogue for what to do next.

I’m sorry, but I’m finding it difficult to see how the message could be more helpful.

You were given the answer to the replacement for Quick Overriding fonts earlier today. Click on the dropdown box at the top of that dialogue box and select the font.

Read the plain language of the error message, please. At no point does it mention styles.

“No layouts have been assigned to any of the section types in the project.”

So you assign the “As-Is” layout to everything, and you’re done. “Styles” did not enter the picture at any point, nor will there be styles in your output document.

As a rich text editor, Scrivener inherently involves formatting. Always has, always will. But “formatting” and “styles” are not the same thing. (Just ask the many Scrivener 2 users who complained endlessly about the lack of styles in their richly formatted projects.)


The problem is that “At Is” does not remove the artifacts of copying and pasting, of file importing, that so often show up i the editor. The old Compile fixed them easily. I haven’t figured out how to accomplish the same task with the new compiler. I’m stuck at the error message. If it is an error message.

We’re not really getting much further with this because the answer’s not going to change — on the face of it there’s nothing you can do in V2 that you can’t do in V3 and we’ve explained how to do it in several different ways. I suspect that we’ve got different images of what we’re talking about.

So please could you give us an exact example (with a screenshot) of the sort of artefacts you’re talking about, the steps you took to compile and of the output you got in V2, so that we can find the best way to help?


Well, there are three choices.

You can remove the artifacts in the editor, before you even get to the Compile stage, by using features like Edit -> Paste and Match Style or Documents -> Convert -> Text to Default Formatting – both of which existed in Scrivener 2.

You can apply one of the Formats supplied with Scrivener. (The equivalent of Scrivener 2’s Compile Presets.)

Or you can actually read the abundant tutorial material provided on how to create your own compile Format.

This is pretty much exactly what you would have needed to do back when you started using Scrivener, you’ve just forgotten because it was several years ago.

Actually, there’s a fourth option, which is to revert to Scrivener 2 and discover the new options in Scrivener 3 by starting fresh in a new project.