Thread List / More-powerful Comments

(English is not my primary language)

Keith Blount,

I know you read this posts. You have personally answer me a few questions over the years, either by mail on in this forum (I’m the guy who asked you to add the ¿ and ! symbols in the extra keyboard row for Spanish writers a few days ago).

Based on that I know you care about us and are always listening. Thank you for that.

Of everything I can ask for Scrivener there is one thing, one little thing, that will change everything to me (and maybe for others to). And I mean everything!

Let my try to explain. You definitely know the concepts of “threads” in a story. We sometime are working in a novel with different themes, details, etc. that are related to each other and that we want to keep them stacked together as such.

As an example I tell you this. A few month ago a freelancer was translating my second novel from Spanish to English. In two separated paragraphs I have a line of text repeated intentionally for a dramatic purpose. When he translated the book I notice that he had translated the two paragraphs slightly differently. Of course, he didn’t notice that they were intended to be exactly the same (they also were a few thousand of word apart and the thing was kind of subtle).

I have a lot of situation like this. And I have used the custom meta data, the comments, etc. to keep track of such nuances, but nothing so far can handle this situation perfectly. I don’t have a specific way to propose, but more to tell you about the problem and tell you my ideas.

Imaging the Comments feature but with tags. This might do it, I think. For example. I am editing my novel and I found a comment in this paragraph. I click it and immediately the sidebar show 4 comments in total (the four with the same tag, for example: @repated-intentionaly). That way I can know that this four paragraph have something in common and have them marked as its own separated thread.

Lets use another example. I have a scene when Character 1 is telling another about something that happened 3 year ago. A few chapter later, Character 1 continues with his backstory telling. And in the last chapter he add something to that same story, something that happen 4 year ago. All this information is a simple backstory with its chronological order. But it was told in a non-chronological way and also everything is spread across the entire novel. But imaging now that I can mark this three parts with a comment (so I can add notes to it) each and with a one tag like @character_1_backstory.

When revising, editing and even writing one needs to go backwards to find something, but when the word count keeps increasing one lose track of the marks, colors, etc. I have use the colors in comments to separate a few treads, but colors end up looking like each another very soon, and one need to keep track of what color means what.

Keywords and custom meta data have the problem that they doesn’t work with selected text (to my knowledge) so I might know something is in a particular document, but now I have to look for it inside it, and sometime manually if I don’t remember the specify text.

I love the Comments in Scrivener because they act like links (I press a comment and I jump right to the commented text). Buy I usually have hundreds of them in my novels, trying to keep track of translation notes, characters backstory, mistakes, etc. This is why I need a way to make the Comments work with Tags.

The best and cleaner idea I can imagine is to use a Drop Down Menu on top of the Comment Sidebar that display all tags you have added (and that can be anything starting with a @ symbol written inside the comments itself). And so, if you select @example_tag from that Drop Menu, the Comment Sidebar will only show the comments with that particular tag and only those, so one can follow that tread by itself without the other hundreds gettin in the way. That Menu can have a :Show All: option that will show the comments as Scrivener does it now by default.

In edition, as any tag system, a single comment should be able to have more than one. That way we don’t have to create multiple comments in a piece of text to apply more than one tag to it. Also, the Drop Down Menu could work like the binder in that one can select more than one tag and thus show all of the comments that have either all, some, or only one of those.

I don’t know if I have made myself clear, over-clear or under-clear; but let my know.

Please, Keith, I know you have a lot in your hands and head, but try to consider this. You can ask me for more information or let me know of any way you think I can accomplish something like that with the other features in Scrivener. This little Comments/Tag system can revolutionize the way I work with really complex and long projects.

Have a good one.

1 Like

For translation, it helps to give your translation agency/translator as many instructions and as much background information as you can so that they are aware of what things are critically important to both the language and meaning of your work.

Also, working with a translator who uses a translation-memory program (such as SDL Trados) will help significantly in terms of consistency, as the program identifies repeated words, phrases, and sentences, even if they are hundreds of pages apart. The English editor should then refine the translation in concert with you. … ranslators