Subdocument compile options?

I’d like to break up my longer scenes without showing section separators between them. However, during compile, I can’t find a way to skip text separators for these subdocuments. So they’re compiling as scenes, meaning I can’t use them for organizational purposes.

Example, say I have:

->   Scene 1
->   Scene 2
      -> Sub-scene 1
      -> Sub-scene 2
->   Scene 3

I’d like the text separator between Scenes 1, 2 and 3, but no text separator between scene 2 and sub-scene 1, or sub-scene 1 and sub-scene 2. The options for compile only include Text, Folder, Folder and Text, and Text and Folder separators.
Is there a way to achieve this?


You can do this with some trickery, using the compile replacements and formatting levels. Basically, you want to set your sub-scene documents to use a special title prefix, so that then you can replace the combination of scene break-title prefix-empty line with nothing.

Assuming the Chapter items in your example binder are at level 1 (immediate child of the Draft folder), the scenes are level 2 and the sub-scenes are level 3. In compile’s Formatting pane, select the text document row and click the “+” button in the upper right until you get a text document “Level 3+” row. Select that row, then click the “Section Layout…” button and add some kind of prefix, say “DeleteMe”.

Next, go to the Replacements in compile and click the “+” button to create a new item. In the “Replace” field, enter your custom text separator, Ctrl+Enter for a carriage return, the “DeleteMe” prefix, and then a second Ctrl+Enter to remove the final carriage return. (This will mean no empty line between the text of scene 2 and sub-scene 1 or between sub-scene 1 and sub-scene 2.)

Delete the placeholder text in the “With” field and leave it blank.

You should then get your sub-scenes compiling all together with their preceding scene as a single document, and back to the regular text separator before the next scene.

Great, thanks! This worked like a charm. I did have to use my custom text replacement rather than just the newlines, in case someone else stumbles upon this in the future who is using custom text replacements. A nice trick to have in the bag.

Of course, this is a bit fragile, as any restructuring (say, moving your chapters into acts, or altering your custom text separator) will break this compilation, as it’s dependent on absolute, rather than relative, levels of hierarchy.

It’d be great if nested scenes got their own separator options in scrivener 2.x: Parent Text to Child Text, or Text to Nested Text. Especially since nesting your text is so encouraged due to the wonderful scrivenings feature (one of the defining features of scrivener, surely), it seems appropriate to allow formatting based upon this.

Is there somewhere I can put in a feature request for this? Will it be handled by the new compile system in 2.x?

Thanks again for the great tip, it’s very much appreciated!