Title, Copyright, offset to right slightly

I am new to the board and a new user to Scrivener as well. I saw that this was covered in a topic and my guess is that since I have my book formatted to indent, that is the problem.
If that is the case, how do I NOT indent the title and other front matter pages while still keeping the indents for the rest of the book?
All I want is for it to look professional. It took forever to figure out a few tricks that just didn’t make sense from the manual, but this one is stumping me. I’m using the Mac version, by the way.

Much thanks in advance to anyone who can help. Be gentile. :slight_smile:

Go into the Contents compile option pane, and you’ll see an “As-Is” checkbox column for all of the items that make up the book. Use this mode for any sections that have special formatting that the compiler shouldn’t touch. It will also remove any automatic titles that might otherwise have been tacked on. Then, all you have to do is make these sections look nice in the editor. Assuming the output format can handle the type of formatting you use, you should be good. You can also set this flag while working in the project by opening the Inspector and checking off “Compile As-Is” in the middle section.

I’m formatting for Kindle and all of the rest looks wonderful. It’s just those darn front matter pages that are giving me the headache. Thank you! I will try that and hope it works!

Well, that actually did not work to my surprise! What I ended up doing made me feel like a fool, though. I just used the format preset of “title” (right there in front of me face in that drop down box in the upper left of the writing area. Voila! Now to make a post with hopefully my last question…why I can’t get the first paragraph of each chapter to not indent. I tried all the tricks I could read and at best ended up with an output to the Kindle previewer that had left justified paragraphs here and there - all over. It seemed almost random. I’m thinking of doing my full novel and then just going in and doing each chapter by hand. It can’t be that big of a deal - or is there an automatic way to do this? Maybe someone has a nice template for writing a novel they care to share? :wink:

Ah, I might have misunderstood you to mean that the title was offset only after compiling (a common teething problem, as Scrivener is a little different than most of the familiar word processor style programs in that it is designed to offload pretty all formatting to the compile phase, often to the extent that formatting in the editor is completely ignored—hence an “As Is” flag to dodge all of that and just print what you typed as you typed it). If you’ve been looking for how to work with indents in the editor, try Format/Show Ruler. It should be familiar from any word processor style program, but if not it is documented in §15.4.1 (pg. 205 on) in the user manual PDF.

The most common cause of this is having a mixture of “old school” tabbed paragraphs vs. indented paragraphs. I haven’t checked in a while, but Kindles used to have issues with displaying tab characters (as is to be expected as literals tabs are by default completely ignored in HTML-based rendering, which is what all e-books use).

Best way to look into that is to track down a misbehaving paragraph in the original project, use the Format/Options/Show Invisibles command, and if you see a right-arrow prefixing the line, that’s your tab. Don’t worry about cleaning them out individually, we have a macro for that in Format/Convert/Strip Leading Tabs, that can be run on large selections of text (try Scrivenings mode to fix many documents at once).

That’s a good thing to do anyway as you really don’t want tabs for every single paragraph in this day and age since it reduces the flexibility of the document.

I’d recommend the “E-book” compile format preset as a starting point (in Compile, you can select it from the “Format As” drop-down menu). It makes a nice looking e-book and it will clean up all of the formatting in the book, as well as doing some menial grunt-work like making the first paragraph of a new section flush left instead of indented. If you want to play with the look of the output, that’s what the Formatting compile pane is for.

Anyway, as you might have noticed, you’re kind of jumping into the software at a point where most people are pretty much done with using it for the project. :slight_smile: Scrivener is more the place where one would spend six months or years writing—and then maybe spending a few days getting everything out. By then they’ve been in the software for a long time, and although Compile is likely a new thing to learn, one is already at least versed in the philosophy of the software. Without that natural “training” period, you’re going head first into the shallow end of the pool. But—it can work, so hang in there, and the good thing is that once you’ve figured this stuff out, you’ll have cracked the hardest part of the program. The rest should be cake since part of figuring out how the compiler works is figuring out how the rest of the program is designed to work.

Amber, thank you so much for the extensive reply! Yes, I suppose being new and doing as much as I am may be part of the issue (snicker) but I wanted to get a feel for using the program so I did the tutorial and went right into “writing a book” with a few chapters and Scrivenings in each and seeing what I could crank out. Mind you, it was just me banging away garbage phrases, but typing nonetheless. No copy and paste, etc.
After finishing my “test book” I went ahead and exported to see what I would have. After about 20 times, I had a pretty decent idea of what was going on and what ought to be set where to get the desired result - a professional looking e-book. I just wanted to get that step out of the way so I had a feeling of familiarity with the program and was comfortable with all phases before actually getting into my own novel and having to experiment with 80k words or more. I love the program and am learning the interface mostly by using it. I didn’t read the entire manual but did study quite a few sections. I won’t need to be using all of the features the program has to offer, but I want to be adept at the one’s I’ll be using for my own writing.
I’m printing your reply for reference. It is that helpful. Thank you again so very much. You must be a whiz on this thing!