Link Specific Text from One Document to Another?

@Mindstormer Thank you very much for your “comparison”. It’s really useful and well done.

I can’t help you with your problem and I don’t want to tell you nonsense that doesn’t interest you. In any case, metadata (with or without collections) offer simple and quick ways of grouping / linking documents. Or if you assign the same icon to two (or more) documents, they are linked together. This takes two seconds.


That sounds unreal, or is it unrealistic? Either way it’s weird.

It is just one of many possibilities. Some like it, some don’t :slightly_smiling_face:

Position the emoji window next to the Scrivener project. Position the cursor in the title, the text of the Scrivener document A (or wherever you want). Click the icon to paste it. Repeat this with document B.


This, of course, doesn’t address the root issue of linking to sentences/paragraphs in-file, but I am curious how they are linked by simply adding a matching Emoji. How does one jump between them with this?

I’m not sure what that means. If I want to jump to a specific point in a document, I use comments. One click and I’m where I want to be. The same icon shows which text passages belong together.

I have a system for how I use icons in a project to keep different documents together or to search for them. If you’re interested, I’d be happy to explain it, but I don’t yet understand what exactly you want to achieve. :slightly_smiling_face:

Oh ok, so it’s just visual similarity that is pseudo-linking them (ideologically) in that you still have to manually find the corresponding emoji.

What I’m referring to is the creation of a hyperlink that will (when clicked) automatically open to a designated paragraph or sentence within a document (the same document or another document within the same project). This is increasingly becoming a common feature of other writing applications such as Notion, Microsoft Onenote & Word, Upnote, Obsidian, FSNotes, Devonthink, Craft, Zoho Notebook, Taskade, Joplin, Reflect, Bear, CrossLine, etc.

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There’s already been very extensive discussion of why this is not a feature of Scrivener. I’m going to allow this thread to remain open for further discussion of alternative approaches, but there’s no need to rehash the points already made.

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I’m well aware that there is zero interest in user interest or feedback on this by LiteratureandLatte at this point. The explanation was merely a response to the expressed lack of clarity as to what was meant in the prior comment. Thanks though.

@Mindstormer Is it possible that you are confusing your own interests with the interests of everyone? That can happen and has already happened to me… In my head, not … If Scrivener is such garbage and doesn’t handle the most common features, then use one of the 14 other apps you listed that are apparently so wonderful.

Or do what I did. You realize the advantages Scrivener has over all the other apps for you and accept that it’s not your app.

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To clear up one misconception: there is this narrative you’ve spun that we don’t listen, don’t care anymore, and that we think only our way is best. As I’ve noted several times before, but perhaps not often enough: the reason Scrivener does not have this feature is because its text engine does not support it.

That’s… it. Really. :slight_smile: If it could, we probably would.

Not that I would likely make much use of it, or if I did, it would be a convenience tool on top of a marker, for the main reasons I gave above. I have markers from files in software that no longer exist, made for operating systems that no longer exist—and they still work to this day, in every program I open or import them into. Most direct hyperlinks like this do not survive any kind of data movement between software. For that reason I have never once found their use compelling. The very small convenience you get (if any, as I went to in my analysis of hyperlinks—the “wall of text” you confused with me explaining the method for some reason, the method itself is a 600 word parcel basically describing what is mechanically similar to typing in italic text and using copy and paste) is not worth the longevity problem.


Chill out. You’re making stuff up. Nowhere on this thread does @Mindstormer come close to implying that Scrivener is garbage.

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Sometimes exaggerations are just a stylistic device to make a point even clearer. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Putting aside the .rtf technical limitations, I would love if Scrivener supported text to text linking. But your points here are valid, and are things I hadn’t considered.

Fair enough. In this case though, in my opinion it undermined your rationality, thereby weakening your point. :innocent:

FWIW, I don’t see most of these as “writing applications.” For instance, DevonThink, the one I’m most familiar with, is a full-text database. As such, it has built a whole infrastructure around linking things. It’s great! I love it and use it constantly! But not for writing.

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On the contrary, not declaring yourself the most important and smartest person in the world has always been a sign of wisdom.

Seriously, no one will ever find an app that always works exactly the way you want it to. When you finally understand this, you’ll live longer, be healthier and write a lot more. :innocent:

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Not to be too pedantic, but RTF itself does not have this limitation. In fact on compile Scrivener does support this kind of linkage, which is how its ad hoc “table of contents” feature works, as well as cross-referencing within the text to section level elements. It could probably even extend that deeper, but it’s a bit more difficult and complicated to do that. What I’m getting at is that RTF has a bookmark feature, those can go anywhere at all, right in the middle of a word if you want, and any hyperlink can point to that bookmark. It can also as a function of being a field, extract data from that location, which is how we achieve the right half of the ToC feature, where page numbers are printed from where the bookmark is paginated to.

It’s the text engine though, that doesn’t have this. It’s a common thing in Scrivener. The text engine is a lot more simplistic than what the compiler can do, because it’s a whole lot easier to write out code that does something than it is to reinvent page layout, hyperlink functionality and so on. Footnotes are another example of something Scrivener’s text engine can’t do, but upon compile, become “real” footnotes, not inline formatting or its bespoke sidebar treatment.

It’s the actual mechanical aspect of having a link that (a) opens a whole separate physical document and (b) has the wherewithal to scroll that document to a hidden bookmark element within it, that the text engine can’t do. And if you can’t get in there and tell a hyperlink to do all of that in the first place, the rest falls apart.

I realise in getting a bit technical I’m contradicting some of my thesis above. Scrivener is a proper outliner, and the notion of writing a hundred lines of structured text into its outline is what it is all about. The notion of instead putting that hundred lines into one of its text fields of a single outline node is not what it’s all about. When I speak of “opening a physical document” here, I am speaking of the actual fact of what is on the disk. An outline node in Scrivener is up to six separate literal files, where the text field is one of those, stored in RTF format.

Yeah, it’s a good way to start a flame war too, though, so bear that in mind.


Or else you’ll abandon writing almost entirely for several years while you write your own app. And then your generous sharing with the world will spawn an entire business that will allow you to become a full time software developer (not writer) with thousands of customers constantly demanding you do things their way instead.


If Windows Scrivenings worked the way it’s supposed to work, I would happily do things your way. Unfortunately, it does not and (apparently) will not.