Only Front Matter is being compiled in Scriv 3 (Mac)

I’m compiling, or trying to, my first novel that I’ve written in Scrivener 3. I’m using the Mac version on an Apple laptop running the latest OS. I’ve selected Compile and then my output, I’ve confirmed that I’ve marked the box for everything I want compiled - Front matter and chapters and nothing else. I’m working from the Manuscript button above all my chapters. But, when I click compile, it’s only compiling the Front Matter. What am I doing wrong?

Hi Mattpartenauthor, and welcome to the forum.

I’m uploading screenshots from a sample fiction project I have.

In this first image, you’ll see that I’ve marked my project’s Manuscript root folder with an orange arrow. For the compile process to work correctly, any chapter folders or scene documents I want to have included in the compile will typically be located in this folder.

In that same screenshot, I’ve marked my Front Matter folder with a purple arrow. It’s at the same hierarchical level as the Manuscript root folder but outside of it. That allows me the flexibility to include it or not in my compile.

In this second screenshot, I’ve used another orange arrow to mark the dropdown that determines what materials are being included in the compile.

That dropdown can be used to change the compile settings, for example I could select one chapter in the manuscript’s binder and then change this dropdown to “Current Selection” to compile just the one chapter.

I also used a purple arrow to mark where my Front Matter folder is selected. Its documents are added to the list if I tick that “Add front matter” box.

If you compare these screenshots to your project’s structure and compile settings, are you seeing any obvious differences in the settings you’re using?

You might also want to check out our 4-part series titled “Getting Your Work Out” on the Mac tutorial videos page. You might find seeing that process demonstrated is helpful.

The Tutorial also has some documents about the compile process. And, Chapters 23 and 24 in the Scrivener manual go into detail on the settings and customization process. You can access a PDF copy of the manual from the Help menu. That is also where you can access the Tutorial.

I personally like using the Tutorial as a testing space for a number of Scrivener features, including testing out the compile tools and options. That way, I can experiment with different compile formats and output files without using my own work. If I get settings wrong in the Tutorial, I can delete the flawed one and get a new copy from the Help menu.

You could also open the Tutorial side-by-side on your computer with your project, test compiling it, and then compare its settings with yours to see how they’re aligning.