problem with scenes in scriptwriting format

I’m writing a screenplay in Scrivener for the first time and it’s going pretty well so far. (No, let’s be honest: I’m loving being free of the tyranny of Final Draft!) I outlined on the corkboard so I have my list of scenes running down the left-hand side; but when I click on one of those scenes to begin writing it, I find it isn’t in screenplay format. I am greeted instead with ‘page 1 of 1. words 0, characters 0’ at the bottom of the screen instead of the screenplay prompts (Scene Heading etc).

I have worked out how to change the format for each scene by using Formatting > Scriptwriting > Script Mode, but it’s a bit of a pain to have to do this individually for 40+ scenes. I assume there was something wrong with the way I set it up in the first place: can anyone tell me how to set things up so that scriptwriting format automatically comes up in each new scene?

Many thanks.


The way it decides on whether to create a document in script format or not is to base it on the currently-selected document. So, if the currently-selected document is in script format, when you add another document, that will use the same mode. If you were outlining in corkboard mode with no scenes yet switched to script mode, then this would be why.

There is a way to force, things, though:

  1. If you don’t already have a Templates folder in your project, create a folder somewhere (probably inside or next to the Research folder), select it and use Project > Set Selection As Templates Folder.

  2. Create an empty document inside the Templates folder and switch that empty document to script mode.

  3. Select the Draft folder and go to Documents > Default New Subdocument Type and select the template document you created in (2).

Now, whenever you add a new document to the Draft folder, it will create a document copied from the one you created in (2) - a blank document in script mode. (Templates + Default New Subdocument Type can be used with any folder to have documents created in that folder based on a template document.)

Hope that helps. Glad you’re enjoying using Scrivener in general!

All the best,

This is extremely helpful–many thanks!