Snapshots and / or Draft Versions

Are Snapshots simply the more sophisticated Scrivener version of Draft 1, Draft 2 etc with the adventage that Snapshots can be for particular parts of a book or chapter or section etc instead of the whole thing? Or am I missing something else about conventional Draft versions within Scrivener?

Yeah, that’s basically it: it’s an outlining approach to grand rewrites, since the program is outliner based to begin with—might as well approach milestones from that point of view as well. The idea being, if you write in pieces, you will rarely need to revert hundreds of items to Revision 2 because a bad idea in Rev 3. It might happen, but it would be more common for a few sections to be rotten apples; and so thus easier to roll just those sections back individually.

However that isn’t always true, especially if a rewrite is major and promises to shift a lot of details across the board. For that, you can perform larger scale “whole Draft” snapshots by duplicating the Draft folder into another area of the Binder. A lot of people like that approach. Do note this technique is currently hampered by two bugs: (a) the Draft cannot be duplicated into a new folder, and (b) when selecting a bunch of things and duplicating, only the last one duplicates. Thus, the current work-around for taking a whole-draft duplicate is to select all of the top-level items in the Draft, Documents/Group them into a sub-folder, select the sub-folder, Documents/Duplicate/with Subdocuments. Now just name that “Draft - Rev 2” or whatever you want; move it out of the Draft folder, select the temporary folder you created, and use Documents/Ungroup to pull everything back out. Now you can remove the temporary folder that contained them all. Sorry for all of that trudging about. This should be as easy as selecting the Draft item and pressing Ctrl-D, but like I say that is still hampered by these bugs.

The other thing that Snapshots accomplish are a way to set short-term milestones, or what many people use the traditional Save model for. Since Scrivener auto-saves constantly as you work, this runs at odds with how many people are accustomed to working. They can work for a while in a .doc file, get fed up with a line of attack, and just close the file without saving it. Problem solved. With Scrivener, your work is constantly updated on the disk so you never lose anything—but that also means you have no milestones—in come Snapshots to save the day. Just use the feature as you would Ctrl-S in Word, and roll back to a prior version if things go astray.

So, Snapshots are really the one stone that left two birds on the ground. The ability to title snapshots (note there is an alternate keyboard shortcut for that) is useful for distinguishing between major revisions and the little markers you put down during a day. I prefer to keep the latter untitled as that makes it much easier to go back later on and clean them out since they are rarely useful in the long term. I hardly ever clean out snapshots that I’ve bothered to title. They are my low-level fail safe.

Many thanks AmverV for your very helpful response. I have only been using Scrivener for a month, am already adicted to it but am still trying to get my head around its many very interesting features. I am sure I will need more help and look forward to your assisance again.