Option to Compile Non-Draft Folders

I know that the draft folder is meant to be special, but hear me out.

I do all of my planning in Scrivener. I’ll have a folder containing Plot, Character, Setting, and other individual text items. This works exceedingly well inside of Scrivener, since all of the contents of my planning are displayed in a single scrolling page when I select the parent group. However, if I want to share my planning, or even view it outside of Scrivener, I either need to export each individual file and zip the whole folder, or drag my planning into my Draft, then deselect my actual draft and compile my planning into a single document. This isn’t difficult, but it’s a weird bit of unnecessary tedium.

What I’m suggesting is either an option in the Export dialogue that compiles all selected documents based on the binder hierarchy (basically making it a bare-bones compile), or an option in the Compile dialogue to select non-draft items.


  1. There is no real reason that you could not structure your Draft folder with subfolders to house both your actual draft as well as other folders for your planning folders or whatever (assuming that the contents of these areas include only compilable material, as your folder-movement strategy suggests). Then you just tell Compile what part of your Draft folder to target on any given occasion.

  2. On my platform another easy way would be to select whatever docs you want, enable Scrivenings mode so they are unified in the Binder and then Print to PDF. This works just as happily on text docs in or out of the Draft folder. I know that Win Scriv does not have Scrivenings mode yet (or last I knew), but it will, so you should have similar functionality.*

  3. Of course, the reason that Compile is restricted to things in the Draft folder is because the Draft folder itself is restricted to containing only things for which compile makes sense (and is not underdetermined). And so that other areas, like your Research folder can contain anything you want for your project without regard to its compilability. (You could search the forum for discussion of the question of why you can’t put just anything into the Draft folder – which is the flip-side of your wish, so the considerations there are pertinent to what you are asking for.)

  4. In fact, I use folder movement quite a lot in certain projects. I maintain a Ready folder at the top of the project and drag folders to it that I want a quick compile of. I just leave my Compile pointing to that folder. I just find this easier than monkeying with telling Compile what subpart of the Draft folder I want to compile now. So, I look on the folder movement strategy that you are already onto as often more convenient than what you are asking for! Admittedly, the projects where I find this most handy are not projects with a unified central draft, but projects that house many independent items.


  • I don’t know what the equivalent of Print to PDF is on Windows – which last I knew was not built into the OS. But I am sure there must be something. Probably there is a faux printer driver from Adobe at least.