Scrivener rave and tutorial on yutube … playnext=1

Hi John,

Thanks for that. Yes, I saw that a little while ago; I think I e-mailed the creator of it to say thank you, if I recall correctly. It was very nice of him to do that. It’s also a very good video.

All the best,

Yes, it is good. There are one or two others also, quality varied.

Would be great if someone did a video on how they put a novel together in Scrivener. Except we all do it differently. I just use individual sections inside the drafts folder, though I know there is a template which puts each chapter in a folder and automates chapter numbering.

Approaches to note-taking, tracking characters and storylines - all would be interesting to hear what works for others.

Oh, by the way, Mur Lafferty mentions Scrivener from time to time in her “I should be Writing” podcast.


John Dodds asks: Approaches to note-taking, tracking characters and storylines - all would be interesting to hear what works for others.

I, too, am interested in how other writers do their work. I always learn something.

I use Document Notes and Project Notes extensively. Writing historical fiction with many characters, I sometimes lose when a character is first introduced, and how/she related is to others. Using Project Notes, I keep a running log of each character as they appear with a short physical description, and in parentheses, the first chapter they appear in. I keep track of births and deaths, there, too, and color code as necessary. I also keep in Project Notes crucial events in the action that span/affect the whole book: 1855: Cholera epidemic, or 1863: Major fire in Ponce. I separate elements with a color blank line between them, using the Highlight function.

Document Notes is perfect for writing a short description of a character’s first appearance in that Chapter. I use this pane for fragments that I have removed but don’t want to delete permanently or to move it to a different folder. Whatever I put there, and return it to the document, remains formatted. Again, using highlighted lines, I separate elements, and I will put here bibliographic entries. I will not have a bibliography or footnotes when the book is done, but I will want to know where I found a particular, arcane fact. In bright red I also mark a reminder to double check a statement that came from research.

When I finish a chapter, I write a one line description, in order of event, in the card, which allows me to find events in context with other events and characters in that chapter. I love that I just hover the cursor over the title in the left hand pane and can read my notes without having to switch documents.

I hope this helps, ye Scriveners…


Probably worth moving your comments to writers block bit of the forum, but I am interested in discussion.

I tend to keep things as simple as I can:
– folder for DRAFT
– Single files in that folder for each chapter
– Notecards for each chapter, summarising what’s going on there
– Keywords HUD to put in character names - probably not the best idea. Characters should be in a separate place, I now think.

And, frankly, that’s it.

My main problems are:

  • Keeping track of the main storylines (I have three strands in my current book, but subplots of less interest).
  • Consistency (with character names, partly… sometimes I misspell them or call one character something else. But that should all come out in the edit).