Styles not maintaining

I have created a style, “Standard”. It is Helvetica, 16 pt.

However, if I choose some text and apply the style it defaults to Helvetic, 11pt.

I have then selected the text, altered it to the correct point size and redefined the style. Nonetheless it defaults to the wrong point size.

What am I doing wrong?

As a rule, we don’t recommend using a default “Normal” or “Standard” style. Most text in your project should not be styled.

Check Font Book to make sure that 16-pt Helvetica is one of the available fonts. On my Mac, it isn’t.


I’m using font changes for emphasis, etc. to keep me on track with notes, etc.

How do I change the default font to a larger size? I want everything pasted in to be in a larger, more readable size.

Project -> Project Settings -> Formatting to change the default for the current project.

Scrivener -> Preferences -> Editing -> Formatting to change it Scrivener-wide.

Documents -> Convert -> Text to Default Formatting to normalize existing text to the new default.

Edit -> Paste and Match Style to match pasted text to its surroundings.

Note that you can also use the View -> Zoom menu to increase the magnification of the Editor. That may be a better choice if you will want to use a smaller font in your output document.


Hi. I was wondering if someone could elaborate on why styles aren’t recommended. My first novel was written in Word using styles for everything (location, chapter headings, first paragraph, etc.) When I transitioned to Scrivener for my second novel, I wanted to continue this approach, thinking it would help when I eventually compile into word for final editing. That worked okay, but I still don’t understand the compile function well enough yet to make it seamless.

I’ve read a few times where it’s indicated that this approach is not recommended, but I don’t understand why. I’m working on my third novel now and still using style codes.



See Section 15.6 in the Mac Scrivener 3 manual.

I wouldn’t say that styles “aren’t recommended.” Keith put a lot of effort into implementing them for Scrivener 3, after all.

Rather, we don’t recommend assigning a style to what Word would call “Normal” text. That’s already covered by the default formatting for the project, and by the Compiler. Instead, we recommend using styles only for “exceptional” items, like headings, captions, and so on.