[LH#4337] Copying and pasting from Word results in a halved page.

Whenever I copy anything from Microsoft Word, the page is split in half so that the words only cover from the far left to the middle, rather than going from side to side.

Here is the link: imgur.com/a/26OLWVC

Please fix this, it’s been like this since the very first beta. Thanks.

Check your Editor settings. File > Options > Appearance > Main Editor.

Specifically, try disabling Use fixed width editor and see if that gives you what you want.


I just tried that, and it didn’t fix it. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

Hmm. I just tried this, and note that upon pasting, the Scrivener document has its right margin set to what the Word doc had.

As well, Scrivener’s view defaults to a zero left margin, rather than centering as the Word view approximates

This will give the appearance you see – on my smaller window it isn’t ‘half’ width.

Try widening the original Word doc’s right margin before you copy. I think you’ll see the Scrivener result equally extend across the page.

There are two easy ways to get what you want, though – depending on just what it is you want…

  • Use Paste and Match Style (ctrl-shift-v or from menu). This will cause your text to obey Scrivener’s format for the spot you’re pasting in, gaining you the font settings to match other text, and the full width your margins show. Your advantage with this method will also include shifting text color to what it should be if you’re using a theme that needs for example white vs. black text.
  • Or, use a simple paste, and once you’ve got your content in, select it all (ctrl-A), and then grab the right margin marker on the ruler (ctrl-shift-R to show it) and pull it over to where you want the margin. Your text will follow, and you pick up the advantage that your micro-formatting for such things as builets will continue to look as in Word.

Both these just worked for me on Beta 35 (latest) on a not-too-complex page of content.

Interesting, Word documents copied over are exactly half of a Scrivener page (6.5), but I can drag it over to 13 and it fills the entire page. Very odd. I’ll have to tinker with Word some more, but I don’t see this happening with any other Processor or program out there.

Well, as I point out, all you have to do to avoid what you don’t prefer is to do a ctrl-shift-v paste, or do it manually from the edit or pop-up menu.

Rather than ‘odd behavior’, what Scrivener is doing with a default paste is taking the full information offered from Word and applying it directly – which, again, gets you replicated details of things like bullet layout, as well as the actual width of text Word had.

When you alternatively do the ‘Match Style’ paste you’re also offered, then Scrivener applies its own current style (formatting) to the elements brought over – again, that bullet example, but now it will be indented etc. by Scrivener’s setup, while the width will be according to the margins of your document has.

In other words, Scrivener is being rather intelligent, either way, which has taken some work, and this is an advantage to you, no?

I do appreciate that Scrivener is intelligent, but the fact that copying and pasting from Word results in a halved page compared to everywhere else is rather frustrating. I’ve tried fiddling with the margins but nothing seems to work. Your suggestion of control-shift-v does help though, so thank you.

Have you tried highlighting the whole posting and then dragging the right margin marker all the way to the right off the pane, which should set the justification to work automatically however wide you make the editing pane, if I remember rightly.

Using “Paste and Match Style” or whatever it’s called, i.e. pasting plain text, will lose any italics or bold.



That’s a very nice point @xiamenese makes.

If you want to do a plain Paste, keeping the Word variation of formatting, then selecting all afterwards, and then pulling the right margin over using its mark on the Rulerwill let you instantly get the look you like.

  • Select All: cntl-A)
  • Show/Hide Ruler: ctrl-shift-R

This works excellently, thank you!

The only thing I need to fix now is when Word files are dragged over into Scrivener. I’ve tried everything I can think of and it’s still a halved page. I can fix them manually now, but a project I’m working on has over 90 separate documents, so having to go back and edit them all to my standards is tedious.

Is there not an option so I can set Scrivener to convert Word documents according to my chosen Scrivener settings? If not, then there should be.

I’m replying to state that I’m now almost certain that my problems are due to a bug in Scrivener. When I go to Options-Sharing-Import Converters and I change the format of .docx conversion from Apose to Microsoft Office (2007-2016), it changes the right tab from 6 to 6.5 inches when I drag the .docx file into Scrivener for conversion. When I switch back to Apose for conversion and it’s 6 inches. In Microsoft Word, the same file has a right tab of nearly 16 inches over.

Please fix this ASAP.

From what I can tell, this is NOT a bug - odd way of handling things, but I don’t think it is a bug. The clue was when you mentioned the right margin changing. Word 2016’s “Normal” page size margins are 1" left, right, top, and bottom which give a right margin of 6.5" for letter-size paper. Take a look at this:

Scrivener’s non-page view editor does NOT show the blank margin space but instead, it begins the document at the left edge and goes until it reaches a right margin stop (which imports with the Word document during a copy->paste operation) - which may be something unintended which is why I say it is “odd”:
What is really odd is when you go to Scrivener’s page view (the margins display, but the ruler seems to be off). See this:

Scrivener has no control over the Converters and their behavior. These are the best text converters we have found to date and bundle with Scrivener. Try converting your documents using MS Word to HTML, RTF or any other format and import them in Scrivener via a different format. This might lead to a different result, which suits your needs.

I’ve tried converting the .docx files to every single format I can think of. No dice.

That is very odd, great detective work. Do you have any idea on how to fix this? An earlier fix posted in this thread works for the interim (where if I select the entire document via control-a and drag the right margin over it fixes itself), but I have not found a way to make it so that it does it automatically when it’s converted into Scrivener. Such a weird but also critical issue, I really hope this is fixed.

I think the best bet is to do a Copy->Paste and Match Style (Ctrl+Shift+V). This seems to remove the Word right margin formatting mark and allows the text to reflow to the Scrivener editor/page settings. If you do bring the Word right margin in, then selecting everything (Ctrl+A) and then moving the right margin marker to where it should be on the Scrivener ruler. Note that Paste and Match Style will remove any and all formatting (bold, italics, links, etc.) from the pasted text.

That does work, but it’s really tedious. It’s such a strange bug/feature/thing. I guess I’ll use workarounds until something is done about it. Thanks for the help!