Quick Notes entry from outside the app

I am new to Scrivener, but I noticed that there isn’t any means of integration with other apps (like note-taking apps for me). I have used Bear and am now using SideNotes. Notes could be auto-entered via a Scrivener widget in Notification. Center, for example. Or IFTTT could publish support for Scrivener, so it could be attached to actions and tied into other apps.

I’ve been through the tutorial and haven’t found any feature in Scrivener that is like this. Does anyone have the same need (hope…) for this sort of integration with other apps?

The Scratchpad can be used for this. It’s a universal notepad for all Scrivener projects.

I have my Scratchpad folder in my Dropbox folder and use it e.g with Drafts 4. I write something and r´then send it to the Scratchpad folder where it becomes its own text file. In Scrivener I open the Scratchpad, pick the note I want and insert it where I want it.

@lunk’s approach is similar to the one I use (Scratchpad in Dropbox plus a text editor). In fact, it means you can use just about any text editor you want – even on a phone or tablet.

I’ve looked at widgets in the past but the problem with them for Scrivener is that they have to operate completely independently of the app itself (obviously). Bear and Notes etc don’t work with multiple projects, but just have a single repository of texts. So a widget just has to add a new note to that central repository, and the app can load it. In Scrivener, however, there is no central repository - you can have different .scriv projects all over your hard drive. And there’s no good mechanism for a widget to be able to choose a project to send a note to.

All the best,

How about a widget that just displays info. Eg, a project specific widget that says the project name, perhaps a cover image, the date of the last edit, and the current mansucript word count…?

And how would it get that information? Search the entire hard drive for .scriv projects every time you fire up the widget?

How about most recently used project? Favourites?

Project name and the date of the last edit are “Finder” information. But the cover image and the word count are not just specific to the project, but depend on the current Compile settings. How do you get that information without actually firing up Scrivener?


It seems the focus is on somehow doing this while projects are closed, but the OP doesn’t stipulate that as a constraint. For snipping text into open projects, there are macOS Services, which Scrivener has a number of different options for. With these you can send text from just about anywhere, to the project (using the window you last used if you have multiple projects open).

You can read more about them in §9.3, Scrivener Services, pg. 200 of the user manual.

What about External Folder Sync? Once you’ve set it up you can create new documents with say Drafts or another editor in that folder and they will be picked up next time the project is opened or the folder is synced. This used to be the process for adding files from iOS before there was a dedicated iOS app, but it’s still available.

It takes a certain combination of settings to make this work, of course, and it won’t be applicable in every case, but it’s an option.

(Even works across devices if both the project and external folder are on Dropbox and you’re conscientious about closing Scrivener on one device and waiting for the sync to finish before moving to the other.)

Obviously, this will only integrate with apps which keep also keep their files in external folders or can export to them: it’s essentially a more specific version of the scratchpad.

That sounds like one of them coding problems people keep talking about. :smiley:

The widget wouldn’t need to be app based, but project (ie for a specific .scriv) based - so presumably would know where to look when you set up the widget.

I dunno, I have no idea how widgets or iOS work. I’m just looking for ways to shame myself into typing more.

Again, based on no knowledge of how it all works / what’s possible / what’s easy… just take the WC of all the docs in the manuscript. May make a tweak to the .Scriv “file” format so it’s stored as a lookupable number.

Just changing the entire .Scriv format for little-to-no practical purpose, that’s simple and worth investigating, right?!?! :smiling_imp:

There’s no such thing as a project-based widget. :smiley:

I assume you’d need to with pick just the one ‘main WIP’ project for the app to report on, or have multiple app widgets that have info selected at the time of launch.

Or just have the app save a new file with a simple table in a known place on the phone that says “Rog’s WIP - WC 38,000 - last edited 15th April, 2012”

It’s a good job there’s no online forum where people can log in and just make ridiculous and impossible suggestions on what I should do at my job.

You’re so lucky. We have this thing called ServiceNow where people can do just that. They’re called “tickets” and we get graded on how quickly we process them.

the date of the last edit, and the current mansucript word count…?