Master Notes File

I’m working on a novel, too. I use the binder area to create separate text files for each chapter. And when I have ideas, I just type them into the notes box. What I’d love is a master notes file for the whole project, so I could have a running file that I could add to and see while working on any text file/chapter or research file.

Does that make sense?

Thanks for the software. I love it.



And that’s a fact!

Although project notes becomes more a scratchpad in 1.01. I would really just recommend - as I always have - adding a document at the root level of the binder to store your notes. I really still think this is a better option than a project notes option. You can use the split view to view it next to other documents, and you can place it where you want or even have more than one project notes document…

And a little tip on that last tip: I like to put my global notes up at the very top of the Binder, that makes them super easy to get to when using the Go To menus that are scattered around the interface, likewise when you wish to link to this documents from within other documents.

Ditto to what Amber said. I do exactly the same thing. Works great.

What’s the difference? Is it a matter of persistence? Something else?

No real difference. You could use the scratchpad as the project notes if you wanted… It still persists. It just makes it easier to use it with other apps and to get the contents into other documents.

I completely agree. Every document in Scrivener is a global document, so I’m not sure why there is a need for a special global document.

I think what people are really asking for is a document viewer in the inspector pane, so that they can view a third document (the so-called ‘global note’) while they work on their stuff in the main window.

So rather than a single global document, why not just allow them to drag any document into a ‘scratch area’ on the inspector pane. And you just remember which document it is between sessions? When they want another file in the scratch area, then they drag it in, and it replaces the one that was there previously.

Which means the scratch pad will float across different programs and not just Scr., correct? I think I remember you saying this. That will be an amazing help. Saves a step and just adds another useful piece we can all adapt to our needs.

Hmm. I quite like that idea; with a utility drop-down with a list of recents, too.

i know squat about creating widgets, but i understand that there are a few tools out there to convert apps to widgets…just wondering (keith or others) if this would be possible with the scratchpad…

technically, doing so would create something identical to devon’s jot widget - you cut and paste or scribble or whatever and then tell it where to go (actually really just the open dbase, but in scrivener’s place it could be a chapter or section within the open scriv project, same idea)

I know squat about widgets likewise, but I wonder if a third party could design this pretty easily? It seems like all you would need to do is create something that grabs the text you just typed into the widget, enacts the Scrivener service to create a clipping out of it, and then clear the text entry area. Can widgets access system services like this?

  • 1 on that idea. Hint hint…


Hmm, I’m not sure about using the inspector to view a third document - it sort of negates the purpose of the inspector, and that is what the split view is for.

As for the widgety stuff… I would recommend seeing how the scratchpad works first, to see if it meets your requirements. Check out the screenshot on my blog to see what it looks like, and it will give you a good idea of how it works.


Thanks for the help on this one. The project notes pane is what I was looking for.

For simplicity’s sake, it would be nice to have an option to view project notes in the inspector’s NOTES pane (perhaps an option to see either local or global notes). That would be very helpful – especially in a novel when sometimes you want to see global notes on chars and plot, while other times you want to jot s/t chapter specific.

I think it’s better than the split view because it’s less intrusive, and it’s easier to see – the split view is difficult maybe because I like to have margins in the pages, and so the text becomes hard to read with two vertical panes open, and if I have two horizonal panes open, it takes away too much screen space.

But I love the program. Purchased it officially today. So most of all… thanks!


I guess the natural follow up question – now that I’m playing around – is whether or not it’s possible to have a vertical split window with the left window having margins and the right window have no margins?

Margins seem to be a global project setting now, right? Am I missing something?

Thanks again…


Hi, yes, margins affect both editors, as you note.

Of course there’s nothing to stop you setting different margins on a per document basis using the ruler, or setting different default margin settings in (scrivener/preferences/text editing/general text attributes) and (file/export draft/formatting tab). As Keith says, the splits themselves won’t be affected, but depending on what you are trying to do, this might allow for a touch more flexibility.
If you’re looking for a way to procrastinate, it might be worth playing around a bit with those settings.