Scribbler™ for iPhone -- Early Look

Hi all,
With the conversations about an iPhone version, I’ve taken it on myself to get started. This is a VERY early look at what I’m calling “Scribbler”. A novel (heh) writing app for the iPhone. The UI will definitely change based on my testing and using it as I develop to what i feel is right. The chapter entry screen will definintely change. This is NOT complete (so don’t ask me for a completion date.) This is a hobby. Suggestions are welcome–however I’m trying to keep it simple and basic yet still be useful AND be able to get it out the door fairly quickly. I guess everyone is wondering if this will have sync to Scrivener. Probably not initially or directly. I want the core functionality stable and then I’ll start with just getting it to mail a novel/chapter to yourself so you can import it using other means. That will also let me gauge interest and whether building a true-sync is worth it. Without further ado, the very rough Scribbler™.

Yes you can use chapter entry in landscape as well as portrait.

As Keith has noted on the forums, the next version of Scrivener will support minimal OPML importing. This is important in that it means applications like yours could generate OPML outlines, using the notes field for text content and headings field for title. This will drop right into Binder hierarchy. It wouldn’t work as far as full “sync” goes.

Looks very promising… although some kind of sync with scrivener would be crucial to me. I would definitely pay $5-10 for such an app.

I need to get the basics done, then worry about sync if there is an actual demand that makes implementing it worth it. I should be able to get some newer screenshots up over the next few weeks.

Nice! Yeah, I would definitely use this – more for taking notes that related to a novel or article than doing actual composition.

Want! (For money, even.)

I’ve just posted some updated and additional screenshots. It’s slowly taking shape given what free time I have.

Suggestions accepted.

So far, this looks amazing !! Can’t wait until it’s released :smiley:

Ok - this looks just very cool. Count me in as a user! :slight_smile:

Happy Holidays!

I’ve just posted some updated pics. Slowly but surely.

Happy New Year to all!

I’ve spent some time working on Scribbler™. It’s coming along slowly but surely. I’ve got a lot of the basic flow done and a first cut at most of the main screens. The more I work on this the more ideas I get. I’m still not happy with some of the screens and flows.

I’m hoping to be able to get a version out in spring some time–no promises, it depends on how much time I get to spend working on this.

Thanks for all that have provided positive comments.

Ok, I’ve taken a hard look at what I’ve been doing and I didn’t like how the screens flowed from one onto another. So I spent a bit of time rethinking things and have reworked the UI and the flow to make the app simpler to navigate and as a result be more iPhone-like. As a side effect, this saves a bit of memory and development is simplified (and therefore will speed up).

I’ve added a TON of info the the first look with a description/explanation of what everything does. Additionally, I now have a first look at how word counts will be handled plus a bunch of other new things, in addition to the UI changes.

Again, everything is still subject to change on individual screens, but the basic flow is now complete.

Enjoy, and feel free to comment, and suggest things.

Ok, an early look at Scrivener sync…very early…some new screens as well. I’ll work more on Scribbler™ next week.

Comments and suggestions welcome.

Don’t have an iPhone, but in a month or two may have an iPod Touch. If I do, I’ll want an app like this. And if I have it, I’ll mostly use it in landscape, with keyboard visible. It would be good to see how the screen-shots look.


I’ll try to post some landscape snapshots in the next go-round. Not everything is working properly yet since this is a work in progress, so although I have landscape code in, I haven’t thoroughly tested it in all screens.

The big news today is that I finally registered Scribbler with the Apple iPhone dev site and now I can work on it on the iPhone itself and this will help me debug it more thorough and get a more realistic feal for how it works.

I still don’t like the icon I have. Maybe I’ll throw a contest.

More / new screenshots are now up for lots of things.

After a long day, good news. I have Scribbler on my iPhone sending an email which when imported into Scrivener creates a structured Scrivener project! At this point, its just the core functionality, but it works and proves that this works and is actually useful!

I’ll post screenshots later this week as my free time allows.

Ok, I’ve posted another set updates that show the export from the iPhone via email and import into Scrivener functionality. Additionally, I’ve settled on a final app icon, and a lot of the screens have been polished up and are looking more commercial/professional. I’m at the point now where I’m actually getting things to work, and tying thing together, rather than just creating new screens. I still need to add more screens, of course (mostly Chapter specific version), but the core of the first version is done.

The last major thing I need to work on right now is implementing the timeline. Then, I need it all to work without crashing :wink:

Apart from:

Author Name

What other sort of information (metadata) would you like to track for a given novel. This should be something generic, not specific (number of pages, word count, etc.–which is handled differently).

Let me know!

I can’t think of anything else you would need.

Revision number (or general label) maybe.


This looks really promising, I would definitely use it in my pocket when it’s ready.

One comment, though:

One of the nice things with Scrivener, is that it’s a general authoring tool, not only for fiction. I think many of us would prefer that Scribbler was “neutral” to fiction/non-fiction, so that i.e. the “Novel” designator could be named “Project” or similar instead?

Not that it would stop me from using it, but Scribbler might appeal even better to all users of Scrivener if we were not supposed to be fiction writers :wink:

Toralf (using Scrivener for my book on photography).