Outline format & printing...

Long-time user and lover of Scrivener!

I wonder if the new version 3.0.3 will allow me to do the following:

  1. Is there some way to make the Outline view better match the Binder in terms of indenting Text docs beneath Folders?

  2. Is there an easy way to print out the Outline view with these indented Text docs, while including the Text docs’ icons and the icon colors?

  3. Other than exporting to OPML or CVS file formats, is the anyway to print out outlines so that the column information is included?


  1. Not sure what you’re asking here. The Outline and Binder both have very similar amounts of indenting on my system.

2 and 3: Have a look at the File -> Page Setup -> Scrivener -> Outlines tab, which configures the options for the File -> Print Current Document command.


1 - OK, I now see the indenting when I select the top-level Draft folder; however, not when I simply select a continuous selection of Folders and their Text docs. Was there a specific reasons for visual indenting to only appear in the full Draft folder?

2/3 - Thanks, it’s good to know about this option. I must say though, that it is not as useful as a spread-sheet like table view, in terms of visual utility and conciseness, turning a 9-page printout (titles only) into an 18-page printout (with Keywords).

I find that a printed outline with keywords is essential to help me track various plot-lines in a complexly plotted novel. Please submit this feature for further revision consideration of Scrivener – a simple spreadsheet-like printout of the Outline view would be the MOST useful for me, and I suspect many others.

Again, thanks.


It doesn’t have anything to do with whether you are looking at the Draft folder or not. Check in the header bar, and if it says “Multiple Selection” then you will get a flat list of items, unless that selection consists entirely of groups (one or more of any kind).

Ah… thanks.

And by the way, I was thinking about your desire to make a table out of metadata. There is a way to do that in theory (it doesn’t actually work at the moment on account of a bug—that has already been fixed internally and will be in the next maintenance update—so maybe set the idea aside for future reference): with the compiler you can basically create tables out of items, by making use of a couple of advanced features. I’ve attached a very simple demonstration of how it could be done:

  • The Draft folder is populated with a little sample data. Each item has a label and some keywords. The desired compile output are these fields in a traditional table layout.
  • Open up File ▸ Compile… and take a look at the preview. You’ll see there is only one thing going on here, and that is to create a single table row with the title, label and keywords as three columns.
  • To see how this is being done, double-click on the “Outline Table” compile Format.

[list][*] The “Table Row” Section Layout does nothing normal, as you can see with the checkboxes. It doesn’t print any text or titles. Instead, everything it is doing is in the “Prefix” tab. In there you will find the table with the placeholders used to populate this information from each binder item that uses the Layout.

  • That by itself will just print x number of single-row tables one after the other. So to get these into a single table, go into the Tables compile format pane. The Stitch together adjacent tables if possible option has been enabled. Whenever the compiler comes across a case where one binder item ends with a table and then next begins with another, it will glue the two together into a single table.

It is the latter part that isn’t working right at the moment. If you turn that feature off you’ll get what I described above, a bunch of individual tables. But if you turn it on, they all end up getting appended to the same row one after the other, instead of creating a new row for each binder item.

Once there is a build out that fixes this, the example as provided should work. To save the format, set the Save to setting on that Format to “My Formats” to make it available to all of your projects.

Alternatively: if the thought of using a little MultiMarkdown under the hood doesn’t bother you, back in the compile overview screen, switch over to Compile for: MultiMarkdown → OpenOffice (.odt). A different compile format will pop up—this one does much the same, but it doesn’t rely upon RTF tricks to get the job done, since a table in MMD is nothing more fancy that structured text, a step above CSV itself. You can see in the preview area itself just how simple a table row is in fact. Give that a compile, and you should find it works great out of the box (I used ODT as an example, but any of the MMD or Pandoc, if you can see them, options will work). No need to learn Markdown. :wink:

I’m not sure if all of this is any better than just exporting a CSV and using a spreadsheet program to do what it does best—but since you asked for a way to do this without Numbers of whatever, there you go.
18213798-table_creator.zip (72.9 KB)

Cool… I’ll look into this and await the next update. Thanks for this explaination.


I did that hoping to print label, status, and word count. I got Section Type and word count instead.

What am I doing wrong?