Substitutions - separate lists for each project?

Hi all,

I’ve been using Scrivener for a while now, great tool - CTRL+Space (to convert multiple spaces into a single space) alone was worth the price for me. :smiley:

I also make rather heavy use of Substitutions as a time saver. I’m a transcriptionist, so certain common phrases I’ve set up as substitutions, for example: “I don’t know” is \k. And there’s many others.

One thing I can’t figure out how to do is to have separate substitution lists for each project.

Take a sample sentence:

“Jenny moved to Boston to attend Harvard. While there, she became ill and had to be treated at Massachusetts General Hospital.”

Different clients have different requirements for anonymity/confidentiality, so I sometimes have to remove any identifying information. For some clients, I could leave that sentence as is. For some, it would become:

“[student] moved to Boston to attend Harvard. While there, she became ill and had to be treated at Massachusetts General Hospital.”

For others it might be something like:

“[client name] moved to [city 3] to attend [school 1]. While there, she became ill and had to be treated at [hospital 5].”

And all sorts of other variations.

I see that I could probably do the substitutions at compile time with the Project Replacements feature, however that would require me to totally change my work flow because I’d have to add a triple-check pass in Word to verify that the substitutions worked properly and that I didn’t misspell anything, and my productivity would plummet. I need to be able to see the change happen live like it does with the regular Substitutions list.

Does this functionality currently exist and I’m just missing it? If not, I’d like to add it to the wishlist please.

I’m currently making good use of the Project Notes feature to keep a list of each client’s specific substitutions and making them manually, but if this could be automated, that would be wonderful.

This is really indeed what Replacements in the compile was designed for. The auto-correction system is meant more for general language and spelling aides, rather than easing the entry of proper nouns and such from specific projects you are working on.

I use replacements extensively, so I’m familiar with some of the potential pitfalls of them, as you describe. What I recommend is using a clear form of marking that will not otherwise arise by mistake. You use of the \ character is a good one, because that is not typically used in prose, it’s only one key to type and obvious if you make a mistake and hit the wrong one. What this gives you is the ability to search for ‘’ in the compiled output, and if it pops up anywhere, you know you typoed the functional part of the replacement. \mgh might be Massachusetts General Hospital, but if you slip up and type in \mhg, it won’t get replaced and you’ll immediately spot it when searching for ‘’.

Heh, I was afraid you’d say that.

My main issue there is that it would require me to use Word more (and possibly go back and forth a bit to make corrections/re-compile etc). Whereas if possible I’d prefer to remove Word from my work flow altogether.

Working in Word more would be a step back for me. One of the reasons I switched to Scrivener was so I wouldn’t have to deal with whatever formatting the clients have requested - seems they all want something slightly different and some of them make me wonder how the heck they read it (single-spaced, no paragraph spacing, huge right margin - so it’s just 70 pages of dense grey text down the left side of the page) - but that’s what they asked for so that’s what they get.

Scrivener reformatting at compile time was exactly what I needed in that regard because now I can type the text how I want to see it, and then just reformat at compile and not have to remember to do or even look at whatever crazy (IMHO) formatting they want. :laughing: So I’m loath to do anything that puts me back into Word for longer than I need to be.

At the moment, I type in Scrivener, double-check/error correct in Scrivener, compile. Then the only thing I need to do in Word is turn on line numbering and resave the RTF. (Any chance of a Line Numbering option in the Compile?)

Anyway, if you’re ever looking about for new features to add, keep that one in mind. :smiley:

I don’t follow why you would need to use Word. If you mean as a place to run your final search for any mistakes, couldn’t you just dropped the compiled RTF file back into the project Binder and do the search there? It’s handy have a compiled copy of the manuscript in the Binder anyway.

Ha, that’s triggered bad memories from when I was working in a corporation, many years ago.

Yeah, it is on the list of things to look in to. There is a relatively simple RTF code for enabling this feature. We just need to figure out how best to insert it into the final product and all that.

One other idea on this text expansion bit—I don’t know enough about Windows to make a software recommendation, but you might search for “text expansion” utilities and see if there is something good for Windows that does what you are looking for on a global scale. On the Mac, I have a tool called Typinator that lets me build abbreviation sheets that expand to plain or formatted text, and can contain dynamic information like time and date or the results of programmable scripts. These abbreviations can then be assigned to specific applications if desired. That in itself wouldn’t solve your project specific request, but since each abbreviation sheet is listed with checkboxes they can be easily toggled on and off.

If there is something like that for Windows, it sounds like you’d really get a lot of benefit from it.

Just when I was about to acquire text expander… :unamused:
This is off topic, but as you are likely using both, would you recommend Typinator, or Text Expander AmberV? :slight_smile:

:open_mouth: Jaw drops - I never thought of that. :blush: I’m still a relative newbie to Scrivener - I picked up enough to let me get my work done, but put off delving deeper “for later” - and to me Compile was what you did when you were finished with Scrivener, never occurred to me to bring the output back in. facepalm

I’ve no complaints with Typinator. It’s very low profile, doesn’t cost much, updates frequently, has very few bugs, and has a lot of useful features that I find to be very timesaving. I use it pretty heavily, I do get into the scripting end of it and such, but even at a more moderate level of usage I think it would be beneficial. I can’t speak for TextExpander (I think Keith still uses it though). I used it many years ago when it was donationware, so I doubt it resembles much of what I remember of it.

Thank you AmberV :slight_smile: