Put some separators for compile

Hi there.
Hope you can help. I have written a novel and for compiling I want to introduce separators between scenes but in some scenes not in all of them. I have tried using keep format but the stars I want to use are very very close to the first line of the scene. Any ideas?

Big thanks.

In keeping with your current approach, I should think you could just adjust the formatting of the lines with the stars on them — increasing the Space After amount in the paragraph setting of those star-bearing paragraphs.


p.s. There is no doubt a more compile-centric approach to getting those scene breaks using two distinct section types for scene docs and assigning the one of them a section format that kicks in the star, but if you have something close to working, pro’ly best stick with that.

I think the best way to do this at this point would be to create a style dedicated to those “end of scene” separators/stars, and include a “space after” for the paragraph formatting of that style.

Then apply the style to all of those specific separators. (Using find in a scrivening of your whole project – to speed things up.)

The fact that your separators will now be assigned a style will prevent the compile format from changing them. (No need to use “preserve formatting”.)
The “space after” set in the paragraph formatting of that new style will fix the space between your stars and the first line of the following scene.
→ The style assigned to your separators also allows that you can later change the spacing for one, and that will adjust the spacing for all of them at once.

P.S. I assumed that by “stars” you meant this : * * *, and not an actual jpg, png or bitmap file.

If you don’t already have your separators in your project, @gr’s above suggestion of using different section types/section layouts specifically for the scenes you wish to end on a separator could potentially be an even faster solution (if you are comfortable with the process).

You could then simply add them here :

…That requires that you know what scenes need to end on that separator, and that you reassign them to the new section type throughout your project.

Thank you both, gr and Vincent_Vincent for your great answers. :grinning:
I don’t have yet any separators for my break scenes, and yes I am talking about little stars ***
I see your suggestions can be what I need, but my doubt is how to apply the new separators only in specific break scenes. You said I have “to reassign them to the new section type” but how to reassign?
Thanks in advance.

As this is a matter that could on the first look seem very complex (but it ain’t), and given that there is no way I could explain it better than the manual would, I will encourage you to refer to the manual.

Search for the section on “section types”.
→ Section 7.6 in the manual (if there is correspondence between the Mac and the Windows versions).

Otherwise, simply insert your separators manually in your scenes, and opt for the first solution I presented to you. (In which case, best create your separator style right away after inserting the very first * * *, so that it is already assignable when inserting the next set of * * *. – That’ll be quicker, as it will make it a single operation, sparing you having to go back at your * * * later to assign them the separator style.)

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Every document has a section type, every section type has to be assigned to a section layout, and every section layout has a separator.

If you want to format two documents differently, give them different section types (giving them the potential for different layouts and separators).

Open the compile format, go to the Separators tab, select the layout, and choose or enter a separator. Custom separators are centered by default.

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In Project > Project Settings > Section Types

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That’s where you’d create new section types. Giving them to documents happens in the Inspector metadata tab or the contents pane of Compile.

I did leave out these steps above. Mea culpa.

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If it was me, I would create a document that just had the star-break line set up in it as per @Vincent_Vincent . Then just duplicate that doc and drag its duplicates anywhere in the binder you want such breaks.

I have sometimes used this technique — using both dupes of a a “big scene break” doc as above and also a chapter break doc for similar purpose.

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The only downside I could potentially see to this vs. using styled * * * is if the user wants to readjust the space before and/or after later on.
But doing this + having the break styled in that “break document” (and I can only assume that this is what @gr meant) is indeed a great idea. Better visual feedback from the binder too as to which scenes have that break, and which ones don’t.

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Thanks for your great answer. I think I need more time to see what I will do. It seems that each modification will create another different.
Thanks again.

Can you please reformulate/expand ?

Hi Vincent. I mean if I do a modification it will create another one. If I put a scene break in the binder I am afraid it will change other settings of the whole document.

Different documents, although they look like entities of their own, are actually just flowing into one another as a single “bigger” document ; unless Scrivener is told otherwise at compile.
Adding a document after your scenes, unless you are already using settings such as a page break between sections etc at compile, shouldn’t be a problem.

You may also merge the scene with the “break document” once you are positive you wanted the * * * at the end of a specific scene. In which case you’ll be back to your scene being a single document, retaining the settings as they were for your scene’s original doc.

Experimenting a little could/would be a good idea, just make sure you do backups of your project first and throughout.

Anyways, if you are more comfortable doing things manually, just insert * * * to one of your scenes, define a style for it, then copy/paste the * * * to other scenes, wherever you want it.

At least, should you choose to do things this way, I would personally create a document somewhere (outside of the draft folder) in which I would paste my styled * * *, so that I can easily go and Ctrl+c it from there later on. (Instead of having to look for a scene that is already ending with the proper break to copy it from.)

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