Populate a Collection from UUIDs on the Clipboard

Greetings – As Scrivener supports book-length projects in an openly accessible data format, there are times we’ll want to use Scrivener to perform operations on a set of binder documents identified by a mechanism outside the program, or enumerated informally within it.

For example, we might use a Windows Search for text in document types that Scrivener doesn’t index, or for images within a size range, or for documents we’ve modified this week. We may have a list of docs flagged by a collaborator, or displayed in grep, or a called out by a grammar checker. Or there may be a set of internal and external doc links scattered among our documents.

In each case, the user can copy a text string containing these UUIDs onto the clipboard. It would be helpful indeed if Scrivener could then parse that clipboard string for UUIDs, and add the valid ones to a Collection, enabling the user to process them as a group.

A regex search for “\w{8}-\w{4}-\w{4}-\w{4}-\w{12}” will find Scrivener UUIDs whether they’re in file paths or doc links or XML data. The rigidities of the UUID format make for added flexibility in the clipboard input structure, and a wider range of use cases.

Thanks for considering!

Rgds - Jerome

The only supported method for accessing documents within a Scrivener project is Scrivener itself.

If you find yourself needing to use Windows search to locate documents, you should consider

a) Whether you are using Scrivener’s own metadata effectively – for instance Scrivener itself tracks “Modified” dates, and

b) Whether those specific items should be stored outside the project, as would be the best way to handle research or image files that need to be accessible with other tools.


Thanks Katherine. These are documents I would like to access within Scrivener; I’ve merely identified them by other means. I’d respectfully draw your attention to the x-scrivener-item protocol that now enables us to open a group of documents from an HTML doc or via a command line, i.e. outside the project. Are we certain that adding those same documents to a Collection would violate some immutable standard?

I do believe the status you’ve described is no longer quo. Anyway, if you please, this is the Wish List forum. Where because we daft and dewy-eyed dopes keep building up impossible hopes…well, you know the rest.

Cheers – Jerome

The x-scrivener-item functionality allows you to locate and open a document using Scrivener. It should not be used to open a document independently of the project. Doing so is unsupported and entirely at your own risk.

However, the specific function you’re looking for already exists, as such links can be pasted into a Scrivener project’s Bookmark list, and opened from there using all of Scrivener’s usual functionality.

See Section 10.1.6 of the Mac Scrivener 3 manual for more information. I’m not sure of the status of this capability in the Windows Beta version.