Things I would LOVE for Scrivener

First of all, I want to write my appreciation for this program. It is amazing and extremely helpful. I push it on all my author friends. Thank you for providing this program at a really great price.
There are a few things that would be helpful, and I’m sorry in advance if I’m stating something that you already have the function for.
Things I wish for:

  1. Most authors these days include links to other books, their website, etc at the end of their book. This becomes difficult when formatting is involved - do you add it as an additional chapter? but then you don’t want it called “Chapter 10”, (or whatever) if you auto format it to call the folders Chapters. You have resolved this easily with the front matter, and I am respectfully requesting a ‘back matter’ function.

  2. A lot of authors are moving over to pushing their books as box sets. When you combine them, you have to (again, formatting) figure out how to label your chapters. Do you have 1 book in a folder and call your scenes Chapter 1, 2, etc? If you do it that way, how do you format page breaks? Or Do you have a bunch of different folders? The easiest (for us writers) solution would be a way to combine scrivener files to make a box set. You upload each scrivener file into 1 and it keeps your settings, front matter, chapters and scenes, etc for each book. At the very least, to have multiple books in 1 scrivener file.

  3. (This is minor, more like a bug) When we import a word doc (say, from our editor with corrections) and use the split function, it split scenes but not Chapters so we have to manually start folders, and cut and paste chapters. Not a big deal, and I’m not even sure this is fixable, but it would be nice to have the chapters split.

Again, thanks for everything :smiley: I appreciate your program.

Thanks for the feedback!

  1. You can already set aside some documents as being “not chapters” (or whatever the case may be), in the Title Adjustments compile option pane. There will be gear button for opting documents out of the prefix/suffix system. Also, since you mention needing special formatting, note the “Compile As-Is” feature is meant for just these kinds of sections (though if you use that you’ll also need to provide a visible typed in title, if you want one, as that checkbox opts the document out of everything in the Formatting pane, not just the prefix/suffix) and simply prints its text content as formatted. There will be a better way of addressing the concept of back matter in the future, by the way.

  2. I would do a little searching around here on the forum for tips on using Scrivener to work with multiple books in a series. It also sounds like you might not be aware that you can deviate from the example folder+file structure from the template you started with. If you need to have a set of book folders, each with chapter folders nested within, each with multiple scene files nested below, that is fine. You’ll just have to adjust the Formatting pane to address the additional level of indent. You want level 1 folders to be “Books” now, and level 2+ to be “Chapters”, and so on. There is quite a bit to be found on the forum regarding that topic as well, if that’s all new, even some tutorials on our video page that may help, not mention the standard interactive tutorial itself.

I suppose what I’m getting at is that from a perspective of using the software, you would kind of treat the whole box set as “a book”—formatting and organising it in the Draft folder using the same tools you would to work with one single book, you just have more layers of folders and different compile settings. The underlying technology behind a box set and a book with chapters is identical, both in Scrivener and in the final format. All that changes is how we as humans think of an interface with that technology.

Granted that doesn’t quite address front matter, but I think it’s important to point out that front matter isn’t something you have to use to have front matter, as a concept. It’s convenient if you swap front matter out frequently for different sets, and that is after all the main point for using it.

  1. Are you using the File/Import/Import and Split… command? While working with your editor, you might even want to use Scrivener’s Separators compile pane to insert some text that can be used as a divider for splitting by—but even just using the word “Chapter” might be good enough to split by—then you can go into those and split by scene.

Another trick: select three scene files and use the Documents/Group command. That’s a lot easier than making a new folder and then dragging and dropping the scene files into it. Incidentally, that tool might come in handy when making a box set, too!

Otherwise, not sure what best to advise in regards to where the Split command works—that’s entirely up to you. If you want to split a document by chapter you can do so just as easily as splitting by scene.

Let me know if you need any further explanation in there. There is also a ton of material on the forum discussing a number of these topics.

Wow, this is a lot of really great information. I’m going to have to comb through it all and figure out how to apply everything. :open_mouth:

  1. Wow, I’ve never understood what that gear button was for! Thank you so much for pointing that out!

  2. I’ve never really played with the deeper levels of formatting the file structure because I didn’t understand it, but it looks like that could be very helpful setting up a box set. I’m not exactly sure how to designate which folder to be 'Books" and which folder to be “chapters” in the format in compile. I’ll have to look at the videos and tutorials that you’ve pointed out.

  3. Yes, I was using the File/Import/Import and Split command. I’d rather split by scene, seems like less work than copying and pasting the first scene in each chapter than figuring out each scene split. I’ve never used ‘Documents / Group’ before, that looks great!

On point two, the structure of what you are exporting is determined mainly by the Formatting pane. If you compare what that pane looks like between the basic novel, and the novel with parts preset, you’ll see how the latter uses folder levels to make the top level of folders directly beneath the Draft act like parts in a book, while folders one level deeper (and greater) print themselves as chapters. And yeah, the tutorials should help here, and playing with some very basic examples in text projects.

This is perfect! Thank you so much!!