New user

Hi Keith

thanks very much for creating and maintaining Scrivener. I have bought a Mac (on the credit card, if you have one they still let you use them you know), after years and years of using a PC and resisting Mac-dom like a stubborn-ass old, ermmm, PC-user, purely to be able to use Scrivener. Apple should be giving you a cut.

I have spent - and wasted - months looking for something similar on the PC, and it don’t exist. I’ve tried all of your tips in the links, but they all either fall a very long way short of Scrivener, or are bloated and confusing. From the moment one starts using Scrivener it is apparent that it has been created by a working writer.

The closest I came to finding something for outlining/planning that could have kept me using my PC was something not listed on your Links page, and that’s SuperNoteCards (or SuperNoteCards for screenwriters). But it suffers from the same problem as many index card apps/features, in that it the cards are single-sided. You are supposed to get an overview of your story by looking at cards with “EXT. FOREST - DAY” and the first 3 lines of your scene, rather than a synopsis, or notes, whatever, on the back of the card. (I even suggested to them that they make the cards double-sided but got nowhere.)

One thing that is really good about their product though is that when looking at the index cards, they don’t necessarily just ‘wrap’. You can move them around in a grid, either horizontally or vertically, with spaces in between etc. If you have a moment take a look to understand what I mean. It would be a useful improvement to Scrivener, allowing white space between cards, so that if you start with a beginning card, an end card, and a card for the end of Act I, you can lay them out with gaps in between to fill in later, and have a visual sense of how much of the story there is to fill in. That’s not very clear, but if you see how they do it you might understand what I mean.

Thanks again.


Hi Nigel,

Thanks for your kind words about Scrivener, much appreciated - and it’s great to hear that you liked it enough to buy a Mac just to use it!

The more-freeform-corkboard-with-space-between thing comes up from time to time, but it sort of misses how the corkboard is integrated into Scrivener. An application such as SuperNoteCard is a dedicated corkboard/index cards app, whereas Scrivener has many tools integrated. The corkboard is actually a representation of a linear list of documents, so if you could place cards anywhere, with gaps, it wouldn’t represent how they appear in the list in the binder, and if you moved them around in the binder, Scrivener would have no idea about where the gaps go any more, if you see what I mean. That’s why the limitations are there - it’s part of the underlying design. I hope that makes sense.

All the best,

Remember that you do have status and label. You can put in “blank” cards that are color-coded, or have a label or status marking that literally says something like “need stuff here”. This is what I do and I find it very useful. Plus I can label/color code it so I know what “kind” of stuff needs to be added.


Yes, I have a “To Do” status that I stamp on scenes that I haven’t written yet, then I drop them in place on the corkboard. I also have “First Draft”, “Revised Draft”, “Done”, as well as “X” for deleted scenes so I can leave them in place and pull out what info needs to be included in the story. Those status stamps are handy.