My file naming convention

Hi everyone,
My first post! How exciting.

I’m experimenting with a new naming convention in Scrivener that I wanted to share and see what people think.

Because Scrivener makes it SO easy to work on different parts of a project, meaning you don’t have to write a book in order so much, and can easily jump around, I’ve worked out a naming convention to my sections.

I generally write a draft, and edit it 3 times before I’m happy. My problem is, if I really like a chapter, I’ll keep going over it and over it and over it when it doesn’t really need it. So, to encourage me to press on with new material, this is how I name things.

[text file title]+. for example, Chapter 1+

The + symbol tells me I’m not done writing that section, and need to return and finish it.

Then, each * indicates the three times I need to edit it, and with each edit, I delete one *. When there are no more symbols at the end of the section title, I know I’m done with that piece and shouldn’t return to it.

With this, I can quickly look down my project files and see where I need to be spending my time, and where there are parts I should just leave alone.


An alternative way to do the same thing is to use Labels and set them to be shown in the Binder.

I usually use four levels but only three Label colors.
No label - that’s the first level when I only have the first draft, no editing done. When I start going back for editing I use red, yellow and green for “still in need of serious editing”, “almost done” and “ready for others to read” (like beta readers or a professional editor).

This way I can sometimes send parts of a manuscript (some green parts) to someone else, for comments.

Oh! I like that. I’ll have a play with them.
So much to learn about this software! Gotta love all it can do.

If you haven’t already, I’d recommend taking a look at our Interactive Tutorial, available from the Help menu. It’s a good overview of the various tools that Scrivener offers.


I use colored Labels for POV, but change icons in the Binder when a particular scene/chapter is finished finished. Right now I’m using stars. I have used Status, but since it doesn’t show in the Binder, only down at the bottom of the Inspector where I don’t seem to look often, the Binder icons are more helpful for me.

Maybe I should say the Status can print across Corkboard cards, but since I’m not a Corkboard user (I find Outline more helpful), that doesn’t work for me. It might be something someone who keeps the Corkboard up or looks at it regularly would like.