Radically different second draft?

I’ve read some of the other threads on how to manage a second draft of a novel, but my situation is a little different, so forgive me for starting a new thread. I’m wondering whether I should start a new project because my second draft will be radically different from my first, and – more importantly – because I did not follow my template’s instructions on organizing the draft.

I know I’m not the first author to perform radical surgery on a first draft, heh. But my first draft failed to follow the instructions for the “novel” template. Instead of making each chapter a folder, and each scene a text, I organized the book into Parts that are folders, and chapters that are texts. I now wish I’d followed the template instructions. I think I could have made each of my four Parts a folder, and each chapter a folder within a Part folder, yes? (If not, how should one organize a novel that has Parts, Chapters, and scenes?) That way I’d have separate texts for each scene, which would help with visualizing the novel’s progression – and give me more info, like word counts.

So now I’m wondering if it would be simpler just to make a new project. From other threads, I gather I can’t have more than one draft folder (called a “Manuscript” folder in my template). I do have research, photos, scene sketches, character bios, and other stuff in my original project, but I suppose I could copy-and-paste them somehow to a new project? What would you all advise?

Thanks in advance.

Well one thing to bear in mind is that the template is merely set up a certain way, and the help file explains how it is set up. That is quite a bit different from rules that one should follow. There are countless ways to set up your project, to the point that many experienced users don’t even use the templates but start with “Blank” so that they can take their structure in whatever direction they need. All of the templates began their life as “Blank”, and therefore it stands to reason that they can become anything else, too. Nothing along these lines is hard-coded. One should, in other words, never feel forced to use the software a certain way!

There is a section in the interactive tutorial that goes through the process of setting up the tutorial project from scratch, which might be worthwhile to revisit if it’s been a while. It’s better to know why things are working the way they are. But this is fundamentally easy to do, and hopefully this checklist demonstrates what is happening behind the scenes, and why your template currently works the way it does, too:

  1. Use the Project ▸ Project Settings... menu command.
  2. The first tab in the Section Types section lists all of the types of things in your project. You’ll see stuff like “Chapter Heading”, “Scene” and so on. You will note that even though you started with a project that doesn’t organise things by parts, we’ve created a “Part Heading” section type for you already, at the very top.
  3. The second tab is where you set up the rules for how your folders and text items work. Thus you just need to tell your project to use this type for top level folders in the Draft, and chapters for the level below that.
  4. Select the rule that is currently setting “Level 1 folders…” to “Chapter Heading”, and click the + button to create a new rule.
  5. Now you’ve got it set up so level 2 folders and further act as chapters, you just need to set the level 1 folders to use “Part Heading”. That’s probably all you need to do. :slight_smile:

Save your settings and click on the Draft folder (it’s probably renamed to “Manuscript”), and switch the editor to outliner view, with View ▸ Outline. If you’ve never used this view before it is probably set up so you can see Section Types in one of the columns. If not, turn it on by clicking on the > button right above the scrollbar area.

  1. So at this point all of your chapter folders probably say “Part Heading”, because they are level 1, and that’s how you have things set up. Select all of the chapters that should be in Part 1. Click on the first, then Shift-Click on the last.
  2. Use the Documents ▸ New Folder from Selection menu command, and give it a name. If it’s just going to print “Part 1” then use something meaningful to you, the compiler will handle the output naming. If you want something like, “Part I: The Thing”, then call the folder “The Thing”. Press Return to confirm the name, and maybe again if it drops you down to the second row (where you could type a synopsis).
  3. Now with it named, press Alt+RightArrow. Right arrow key by itself expands the folder, but with the Alt key it expands everything below that level as well. Now take a look at the Section Types column.

Hopefully it’s all set the way you need. Part Heading at the top, then each of the folders you nested into it now using Chapter Heading, and Scenes below that. And hopefully now you can also see why following the “rules” isn’t important at all. You can full control over what your folders do at each level. You can even override the project’s rules. If you try clicking on the Section Type for one of the items in the outliner here, see how you can make even a top level folder a “Scene” if you really want? Leave the way it is, but it’s good to know about that for cases where you want something different in your outline. You don’t even have to follow your own rules. :slight_smile:

That should be all you need to do. Even the compile settings, if you stick with the default “Manuscript (Times)” or “Manuscript (Courier)” should already be set up. But it’s worthwhile looking at how that works anyway, so you can change it if you want to use a different Format, or in the future if you work from a template that doesn’t have this stuff set up in the background already:

  1. Open File ▸ Compile... and make sure one of the Manuscript Formats is selected in the left sidebar. See how “Part Heading” is already using a layout that prints “Part One: Folder Name”?
  2. Let’s say you don’t want the folder name. Click the Assign Section Layouts... button below the preview column and maybe make the window a little taller.
  3. With “Part Heading” selected on the left, scroll through the available preview tiles. This particular Format only has two options for parts, one that prints the folder name and one that does not. Try selecting the one that does not, at the very top, and click “OK”.
  4. Now you’ll see the preview column in the middle shows your parts as “Part One” and nothing else.
  5. Say you do want that Roman numeral though, instead of “One”. Double-click the preview tile to edit the format and jump to this particular Section Layout (you’ll be asked to duplicate first, that’s fine).
  6. “Part Number” should be selected in the Section Layouts section, and you can see the preview in the Formatting tab below. Click on the Title Options tab to find the place where “Part” is typed, as well as an automatic numbering placeholder. Change the ‘t’ part of it to ‘R’, so it says, Part <$R:part>, and then click back on the Formatting tab to preview it. There you go, now it says “Part I”. Feel free to cancel this experiment if you don’t actually want Roman numerals.

Thanks for that extraordinarily helpful reply, AmberV. That should help me reorganize things nicely!

Before I start that process, though, I’m wondering if maybe I should duplicate the project and then follow your suggestions on the duplicated project? My current project does now have a completed 110,000 word first draft, and while I plan to change much of it, I’d like to keep a copy in its current state. I routinely do make backups for that purpose, but for this milestone, I’d like to preserve the project as it is. So should I just use windows to copy the project files? I’m not quite sure which ones they are. Alternatively, I found a post saying I could

But when I close the project, Scrivener itself closes too. How do I duplicate my project, then?

Thanks again.

You can use the File → Backup → Backup To command to create a “milestone” backup and put it wherever you want.

The thread you linked used the Mac OS Finder (equivalent to Windows Explorer) to duplicate the project. I’m not sure if Windows Explorer offers the same option, but I would only recommend that approach with Scrivener closed.

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Ah, I am not a Mac user, so I didn’t understand what “Finder” meant, lol. All right, I’ll just use ‘backup to’. Thanks! I appreciate the help.

Yeah I should have mentioned that, creating a quick back up with that menu command is never a bad idea before a bunch of drastic changes. Good thinking!

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