Linked notes and export to Word


I am really enjoying 2.0 and with the passing of ghost notes I have come to really like, and use a lot, linked notes. They keep the text as uncluttered as possible.

Here’s my question: When I export a finished paper over to Word the linked noted show up as endnotes. I would like to convert them to footnotes and otherwise fuss around with AS IF THEY WERE NOTES. But Word seems to think that they are part of the text, i.e. using cmd A selects everything including notes.

The two problems for me are:

–Because Word does not think they are notes if I add a footnote/endnote while in Word it does not add that note to the “notes” imported from Scrivener; Word simply starts a new string of notes.

–I cannot convert them to footnotes b/c Word does not think they are notes.

So, I hope I’ve not been hopelessly unclear. The problem I describe above was not, if I recall correctly a problem using inline notes and I might simply go back to them. But I have been finding linked notes really nice.




Please make sure you export using RTF format. If you are exporting to .docx, that will be the problem. Scrivener uses OS X’s standard .docx exporter (the same as TextEdit uses), which doesn’t support footnotes, images, headers and footers and so on, so footnotes get incorporated as regular text. I’ve extended the RTF support extensively though, so that it supports most features, and all versions of Word read RTF. (.doc export should work, too, as that uses RTF “under the hood” in Scrivener’s default exporter).

There should actually be a message telling you some of this when you go to export to .docx in Scrivener itself, if I recall correctly.

All the best,

Excellent! Thanks for the quick reply. I will try that and if it does not work will report back.

You’ve done a marvelous job with 2.0 (1 was great too)!

Best wishes



I am sorry to be thick about this. But. I’d just like to clarify: I exported as RTFD and was able to see the footnotes. But when I tried to export as .doc (as opposed to.docx) I was told by Word upon attempting to open the document that “Paper Intro.doc uses a file that is blocked from opening this version.”

I’d really like to be able to export to Word and retain footnotes. Perhaps the best solution is inline notes as opposed to linked?

Further, I have completed about 2/3 of a book in Scrivener 1.0 and just tried exporting a chapter using 2.0 to see if my footnotes have been retained, etc. In both .doc and docx my inline notes appeared with curly braces; in RTDF as footnotes. In Scrivener 1.0 inline notes appeared as footnotes/endnotes upon export to Word. Am I right in thinking that this has not been retained? Being able to do some final editing, formatting, etc. in Word is pretty essential for me. I suppose I could do some things in RTF. But I’d prefer Word.

Please tell me I am missing something obvious. I have no pride about this kind of thing; I just want it to work.



This confuses me. Word reads and saves to RTF just fine. Open an RTF in Word and do a save as to .doc or .docx.

Am I missing something here?


Yeah, RTF and Word are practically hand in glove. There are some relatively esoteric features you cannot use while Word is in RTF mode, so if you need those features you can convert it to Word’s internal format easily at that point, but most people wouldn’t even need to do that. This usually happens automatically. If you use a feature RTF cannot use, then Word will warn you that you are about to write changes to a file that doesn’t support the features, when you try to save. At that point you can convert it to a .doc file and continue onward.


Thanks. I suppose that part of the problem is that I did not know that RTF and Word are so linked/similar/related/whathaveyou.

So, I export as RTF and then open in Word?

I am seeking REALLY a really basic explanation. You’re not missing anything; I am: a basic understanding of the relationship b/w RTF and Word.

I should be OK from here.


Yes. Export in .rtf and then open in Word. TextEdit is probably the default application on your Mac to open .rtf files, but they will open fine in Word–just open Word, and then use the “Open” menu option to select your exported .rtf and it will have all your footnotes, comments, etc. You can also ctrl-click on the .rtf in Finder and choose “open with” to select Word.

Once you have it in Word, you can leave it as .rtf or, if you prefer, you can choose “Save As” and then save a new copy of the document as a .doc or .docx.

The trouble is just that Scrivener has to rely on Apple’s .doc and .docx exporters, and they aren’t very good. Keith has done a lot of work modifying the .rtf exporter, however, and since that’s a format read by a lot of word processors, it’s almost always the best option for when you’re exporting. Word itself of course can convert it to .doc just fine, so that’s where you want to do the conversion if you ultimately want a .doc file.

Hope that helps!

Man, that was all I needed. Thanks. And it seems to be working just fine. A little hand-holding helps sometimes!

Best wishes