isolate text blocks

I’m just getting started with scrivener. I’m migrating a book from libre office.

I have several sections where I have a block of text, a mix of quotations and commentary, that, for the sake of clarity, I wish to visually distinguish from the rest of the text body. How can I “tag”, if you will, such a block of text so that, upon export, I can style it in a unique way? In libre office I accomplished this by applying a custom style to such blocks.

Ok. It appears that what I’m looking for may be covered by applying the “Block Quote” paragraph preset. Is that right?

On a related note: I’ve noticed that when I edit a paragraph preset (Redefine preset from selection), sections that had this preset applied previously are not updated to show the change to the preset. Instead I have to manually reapply the preset for the new changes to be applied. This is a serious efficiency problem. Can anyone suggest a solution?

Scrivener is not supposed to be a formatting, wysiwyg software. It is for writing.

What you describe is ‘styles’ as it is used in e.g. Word. Rumor has it that Scriv 3 will have styles. Right now there is no simple way to accomplish what you want. But way bother with how it looks in the editor? You can change formating when you compile.

Yes, I fully understand the philosophy of setting different formats at compile time. However, certain default stylings in the editor can be distracting to work with, such as the “body” paragraph style preset which has no space between paragraphs, and there is real practical value in tagging particular blocks of text so that you can easily add a unique styling rule to them at compile time, such as in the case of block-quotes. The reality is, that as a self-publishing writer you can’t ignore styling considerations, and this sort of thing is important for being able to efficiently style both your working environment, to make it comfortable for you, and your end product.

Styling the work environment is done in Preferences. You can have different for the editor and compose mode. It will affect all future projects. As for the current, the only way is to select all and use the new preset.

I am fully aware of how Word handles styles, as I have been using Word since before Windows… But again, Words way of using styles does not exist in Scrivener. Possible in the next paid upgrade. But what does exist is the option to reformat everything during compile, although Scrivener is not intented to handle the final layout. For that you would need a desktop publishing software.

What would you suggest for desktop publishing software?

It depends on what it is you are trying to produce. Ebooks, print-on-demand, etc. POD usually accepts docx as input, and Word is often sufficient. An alternative is Adobe CS.