It sounds like you’ve probably got it now, but I’ll just go over a few points to make sure it’s all clear. First, your project is actually an entire folder with subfolders and documents, the “projectname”.scriv folder. When you create a project or do a “Save As”, you’re saving an entire folder structure, not a single document. So for instance, if you wanted to copy the project in Explorer to back it up or email it to someone, you would need to copy the entire .scriv folder, not just pieces of it from the inside.
Since that whole folder is your project, you can’t save other projects (or the same project) inside the .scriv folder. That would cause a mess, and Scrivener doesn’t permit you to do it.* You can overwrite the whole folder, as you discovered, provided that the project you’re overwriting isn’t open; you just have to trick the dialogue into it by typing the name in yourself rather than selecting it from the browser. So one thing to watch out for here is just to be aware that when you use the “Save As” function, as in other programs, the project you have open is now that project at the new path specified when you did Save As. E.g. if you had Documents\ProjectA.scriv open and did a “Save As” to create Dropbox\ProjectA.scriv, you’re now working in the Dropbox\ProjectA.scriv project and if you try to “Save As” again to Dropbox with the same “ProjectA” name, you won’t be allowed. You could however overwrite Documents\ProjectA.scriv at that point.
Given the confusion that can arise from that, I personally like to use the File>Backup Project To… command to create backup copies; that way I’m only ever working in one project, Documents\MyProject.scriv, but I can save copies to Dropbox or where have you. “Save As” is more for forking your project, where you save Project A as Project B so that you can continue with Project A while also reusing some of your resources for Project B, for instance: you end up with two different projects, each of which is still being actively worked on. Obviously if you’ve been doing Save As for the backup copy thing for a long time now you may have a tight, workable system, and that’s fine, it’s perfectly allowable; I just wanted to throw the backup idea out there since Scrivener has that built in for just this purpose.
You can also backup as a zip file, which I also like since not only is it neatly compressed (making it simpler to transfer, since it’s dealt with as a single file rather than a mess of folders and files) but it’s also harder to accidentally open and work in: you have to be much more intentional about extracting the contents of the archive, and thus it’s much rarer that you’d open the wrong copy of your project and work in it by mistake.
Backups by default add a time stamp to the end of the filename, which again I like since I prefer to keep a handful of backups in case I discover something catastrophic happened and I need to revert to an earlier version, but you can always remove that and so save over the same backup file repeatedly if you really wanted. Anyway, just some options for you!
- There is a bug with this whereby it is possible to select a .scriv folder in another dialogue and then reuse that for saving, but that will be corrected. Should you find yourself saving inside a .scriv folder, change the location!