Legal Pad background for the Main Editor


In addition to the plain white background – of the Main Editor window – it would be nice to have the option for a “legal pad” background.

Lined paper stimulates the mind.



That’s a neat idea. While on the subject, I always wondered what a texture type of background would look like in Scrivener. Nothing more appealing than typing on a open document that actually looks like paper. :smiley:

I played with the option for a lined paper background for 2.0 but ultimately rejected it (although the option will be available for the notes area). It’s fine if you’re using just one font, but if you have different sized text, it just doesn’t look good at all.

All the best,

Itext Pro has some interesting paper backgrounds: … xtExp.html


How about thin-lined paper? Say, on some letters or on expansive paper, there are usually very thin and barely visible lines, but I think that they give a really neat aspect to the paper, and if the text is typed using reasonable sizes (not 5pt insurance company footnotes) it does not interfere.

Beautiful response, Keith. Love your work!

Hope to see this one repeated on the “best of” album.

Even in the form that is displayed in the example, I would like that. I don’t use multiple font sizes since I export everything to LaTeX anyways. Why not have it as a preference with an explanation that multiple font sizes may produce peculiar results?

I like the new tabs feature btw. :wink:

This is not a big feature for me, but I think it would be a nice option.

I also think the example posted does not look bad at all (with the differing line heights due to font size.) I think for those who want the lined background, this is probably better than no lines at all.

Hot damn, here there be tabs. :open_mouth:

At the risk of a derail of this topic (I’ll risk it since you’ve already answered the main question), how would they work? Right click to get a contextual menu for “Open in new tab?” Would the current “take over the current window” behavior survive a transition to a tabbed environment? Or are you arranging it to work with the tabs?

Circus Ponies Notebook does a good job of handling the lined paper vs. fonts territorial dispute by providing two default settings and a custom option. The synchronicity between NB and Scrivener must be very profound, but if it exists at all, it is at a level I have not found.

Too bad.

I don’t know how they are doing it, but in Circus Ponies NoteBook the lines and different font sizes are looking pretty good in my opinion.

Me too would like the possibility to write sometimes on lined paper. Yes, I could switch to NoteBook, but NoteBook has no typewriter scrolling – not to mention all the other nice things for writing in Scrivener.

They are screwing around with the line padding. I think this might be more into the “write your own text engine” realm than it first seems. One other area that would be tough is “tracking the line” (paper line) when you have multiple document starts. Think edit scrivening.

Super cool, but looks like a ton of work. Maybe KB will see some magic way to do this.

Wouldn’t the leading (line height) of the text always have to be a multiple of the visible grid for this to work? Given that Scrivener uses OS X’s system wide rich text styles, I can’t see how this would work. How much control does Circus Ponies Notebook give you over text?

I’m not sure, what exactly you want to know. In CP NoteBook I can choose the font and font size and font colour and background colour, also different line spacings. I changed them, they always look good.
CP line spacing.png
CP line spacing high.png

Ah yes, it seems to do it by snapping between certain preset line heights. What does “custom” allow you to do? Meanwhile, Scrivener uses OS X’s standard rich text formatting capabilities, which allow you to specify whatever you want – line heights are always by default proportional to the font size, rather than relative to the grid.

“Custom” allows to choose the line’s spacing width. If I change the ‘14’ from my first uploaded image the page still looks good.
NB custom 40.png
NB Custom 5.png

D’oh, I realise now that “line spacing” here does not refer to how much vertical space there is between lines of text, but instead is referring to the actual visible lines.

Anyway, I just downloaded the software and my original supposition that the vertical text spacing “snaps” to a predefined grid was correct – I think this is what Notebook means by “cells”. The “custom” setting lets you define how tall that cell is. The only way for this to work is to impose that vertical cell grid across the entire document. Not sure if Keith is interested in implementing such a scheme in Scrivener, though, because while Scrivener isn’t particularly interested in final formatting, it does give you the absolute freedom to specify what your writing environment should look like, and limiting the vertical spacing of text for entire documents to multiples of a grid system would really annoy some people. :slight_smile:

The “cell” system comes from Notebooks standard page format, which is actually an Outliner, not a stream of text page. Notebook also has a free-form writing page style, which does without the bullets, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it is just a re-tool of the outliner engine they developed. I don’t think such a thing is even remotely good for Scrivener’s main editor! While pseudo-paper lines might be interesting in the main view (though I happen to agree with Keith on this point, I think its better to keep them in notes for visual differentiation), sacrificing the existing flexibility for a cell based engine would be a large step backward for something that is essentially just window dressing.

Just my opinion. :slight_smile:

Also, I don’t think these screenshots even look that good. If you have a cell height accommodating larger font scales, that widens things up for everything else reducing readability and wasting valuable vertical screen space; if it is shorter to fit the “body text” then the overflow looks distracting, to me anyway.

Amber, the leading actually snaps to the nearest available cell grid, so it doesn’t use the largest common denominator, but yes, I agree that it’s very limiting.