One Scrivener File or Multiple?

I am new to this but loving this program. I am working on multiple writing projects that include a couple books, articles and speeches I am always working on. I like to be able to move thoughts from one project to another, so I have been keeping the book project, articles and teachings all in one scrivener file. This works amazing, but is this the correct way to run this, or will I run into problems in the future? Thanks for any input.

That’s a perfectly legitimate way to work. One thing you can do to make life easier on yourself is to create one folder for each writing project under the Draft folder (aka Manuscript folder… it can be renamed, and is in the various templates). When you go to compile, there’s a way to make it look at one of those sub-folders as if they were the top-level Draft folder. This is how some people work on book series.

Thanks very much! I love this program! Wish I knew of this a while back. Now I don’t have to have 10 files open all the time.

My bolding. Book Series: would love to see some examples of projects and project templates that accommodate Book Series or Chapter Installments (monthly series)?

Would someone point me the proper direction? thank you.

I haven’t seen any templates, mostly I’ve just seen questions about how to keep track of series, and people saying that you can do one of two thngs:

  1. create a new project for each book, dragging support materials and the book’s contents from the previous project’s binder to the new book’s binder.
  2. Create sub-folders in you Manuscript folder for each book/short story, and set your compile “Contents” pane to the folder for your current work in progress.

For #2, there are other considerations, like how to track how your characters’ changes over the course of each book (hair turning grey, losing an eye, getting married, etc…), and likewise how the environment might change (new buildings, destroyed/demolished buildings, growing towns/cities), and just how to keep research and other supporting documents that no longer matter from overwhelming which do. There are many solutions, which you have to choose based on which features you are using or plan to use.

There’s no one “best practice” for how to use Scrivener when writing a series, so it may be up to you to figure this out on your own. Of course, if you want to ask specific questions like the examples above, or how to compile one book while you work on another, then you can probably get more help than looking for a template that no one has developed. After all, if you keep an entire series in one project, then you aren’t creating a lot of new projects, and therefor don’t need a template for writing a series very often.

There is a use study profile in the Scriv site from one author who writes a series in one Scriv project.

No special templates are needed, though you could make one. In general I would say you want the current book as the Draft; in Research one folder for the Bible, and then the other books also there, both as completed and as notes and outlines for upcoming books. Inside the Bible would be notes on all the places and people that carry over through the books. Also inside Research you could have notes on people and places particular to the current book.

At least that is how I would do it. The next question is whether each book would be organized in chapters or parts and chapters; so that would govern my choice of original template.

You might mess around with a hypothetical structure based on different scenarios, then when it looks good to you save that as a template - assuming you might want to write more than one series.

  • asotir


I’m writing a book series using one Scrivener project. Each book has its own folder in the Draft folder – when I go to compile, I adjust the compile settings to the book I need.

A few adjustments I’ve made to accommodate the series is that I create a subfolder for each character in my Characters folder so I can keep changing GMC sheets for each character (as the series progresses and the characters age & reach certain goals, their goal/motivation/conflict change). On my character worksheets, I have notes about their aging progression – whether they start wearing glasses or their hair changes or they become pregnant, etc.

I also have a folder titled Mentions, with pages for clothing, important events, meals, etc. I use those for notes about parties attended by my characters (historical romance), meals eaten, viewpoints expressed by certain characters, etc. It helps me remember those details so my characters aren’t eating the same foods in every book or so a ball attended by all my characters in Book 1 doesn’t suddenly turn into someone else’s musicale when I mention it again in Book 4.

Finally, I use Aeon Timeline to keep track of events in the entire series. That’s helped a lot with aging the characters throughout the series. If I want the hero of Book 4 to fall in love with his heroine back during the events of Book 1, which took place five years prior, I better make sure that heroine wasn’t still in the nursery at that time. And so on.

I do use a template that I’ve created, but I’ve added a lot of worksheets and tips I’ve picked up at writing workshops and conferences, so I’d be violating their copyright to share those items. If I get a chance in the next couple weeks, though, I can try to clear that stuff out and create a “clean” series template for you.

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First before I say another word, although I may look like a dork being so happy, you folks are incredible and geniuses. Brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

And you RjGuthrie, I have read so many of your postings and support, listen to me and listen to me good. :slight_smile:

Please write a Scrivener, high-level view, book, video, instructional.

I have not read one thing I disagree with in all your postings, I stop at creating a cult group in your honor. :slight_smile:

Aostir, yes, you are correct, and I am reviewing this again to be certain I missed nothing.

JennK, Wow, yes, and I hear you, in fact, it was only three days ago I discovered Aeon Timeline, can’t wait till there is the windows/scrivener to aeon timeline export (or should I say sync). But you are correct. In fact, your template idea and clean template would nice, and would fit into a topic, forum, book on how writers use Scrivener and the Writing Flow Process as suggested by RJGuthrie.

Maybe all here should start a topic, unless there is one already and I missed it. If I did, then, would love to spend time studying other authors writing process in conjunction with Scrivener and the customized templates.

Again, everyone thank you very much,

Thanks for your vote of confidence, but I think Gwen Hernandez and David Hewson have cornered the market on books covering Scrivener for novelists. Search the web for their Scrivener books, and you’ll be well taken care of.


Here we go again! Another, poor deluded, sycophantic, lamed brained, lamb, bouncing, hoppity-skip, happy and oblivious, t’ward the blood-soaked sacrificial alter, of misguided delusion, and ignorance. Makes me feel like fetching up a fur ball… a long… slimy… stinking fur ball.

Obviously, there is no point in tying to advise you to be careful about who you interact with aboard Scrivener, because with your drooling obsequious nature, it would be zooming in one ear and out the other, like an Exocet missile.
Welcome aboard, Young Nuclearfrission,
Good luck

I hate it when this happens!!! :open_mouth: But I have to admit that I am in wholehearted agreement with my Mousehound.
Have to go and gargle with Guinness now! :cry:

If that is humor, let me get a dictionary, because I am clearly uneducated when it comes to this type of humor.

Have a great day and may all writing go your way.

I don’t think you need OED, you have a good enough grasp of the meaning of HUMOUR, you posts are full of it. What you need is a copy of Urban Dictionary … ghten%20up

Happy scrivenering NS


One citation accounts for 111 meanings for the acronym “NS”

Please advise.

And thank you for your kind words, as you can see I am trying to stay cool in the midst of ill-mannered children.

…one ill-mannered child and a cat :open_mouth:

The Stockport Centre For The Advanced Studies of Nuclear Physics’s Monthly Magazine’s back page KIDS PUZZLES
Annoying Acronyms section: shows ‘NS’… Nucleu Sproject

Your more than welcome, NS Kindness costs us nothing.
Take care NS,