Question about folders and scrivenings

Hi everyone,

I’ve been an off again-on again user of Scrivener but as I wrap up my prospectus and get into writing my dissertation, I have a question. Forgive me if it seems basic, but I was inquiring into the difference between a folder and scrivenings? I know there are some obvious differences, like a folder being able to hold non-text items (eg, PDFs). But if I’m organizing a diss. chapter and it’s all text, there’s no advantage or disadvantage to setting it up as either a folder or a set of scrivenings, is there?

Hope the question makes sense.

Firstly, a minor terminology detail, but the term “scrivenings” refers to the view mode, where you can edit text from multiple files at once. It is one of the three main ways to view a folder or group of documents, the other two being corkboard and outliner. So literally speaking, the difference between a folder and scrivenings is that the latter is one way you can have the software display the contents of the former.

But, what I suspect you mean is what we call a file group, where you simply have some things nested under other things that aren’t folders. When used outside of the Draft context, it can be done for any reason you might think of. You might nest 50 screenshots under a text file they relate to, for example, or put a group of related PDFs together under another PDF. So it’s not true that only folders can hold other item types, anything can hold anything in Scrivener. The only real exception to that are the three special folders, you can’t put Trash inside Research for example.

Beyond that, and for how they can be used in the Draft, I summarised the differences in this older forum thread.