To Do List, Racing Word-counter & Advanced Keywords


First off, needless to say anymore perhaps, but I too feel privileged to have such a sophisticated, well-thought-out, responsive program to write in, so thank you, Scrivener developers :smiley: :smiley: This is a good time to be a writer!
I love Scrivener so much, I wish I could just crawl inside and never climb out (except for real life calling, alas) but there are a few features that still keep me reaching out for more.

For one, I would find it helpful to be able to create to-do lists, either in a separate window similar to the Scratchpad or perhaps a special tab in the Project Notes. For now, I’m using a small program called To-Do Lists, by AntLogic, which works wonderfully to outline a scene and strike off plot points as they’re written, or ideas as they’re incorporated, but it keeps work fragmented between multiple programs. One current shortcoming of To-Do Lists is that one can’t save lists by groups and they are not hierarchical, so you wind up having to keep track of dozens of such lists; if Scrivener could address grouping as well, that would be just wonderful 8)

Also, word-counter-envy :unamused: keeps me reaching out to Ulysses and Write or Die more than I’d like to admit. This is more of a personal whim, but, especially for first drafts, I can’t be the only one to prefer the big word-counter gizmo in Ulysses to the… puny one in Scrivener, clever though it is, as it changes colour to denote progress. If we could open a big, graphic word-counter in the inspector, preferably one with the option to have the writer’s input race the word-counter for completion within a determined time constraint (as with the first Write or Die), that would be awesome!!! Not for writing serious final drafts, of course, but it can be highly motivating for brainstorming.

Finally, there’s a feature that would come in handy during editing, that Scrivener sort of addresses with Collections, but not quite, and would be a real game-changer if done right. Let’s say you’re writing a novel, and throughout, you have scattered snippets of your protagonist’s physical description. It would be helpful to be able to highlight these snippets in the text and assign them keywords such as “protagonist”, “description” and “physical”. When clicking one of these keywords in the Keywords panel, all the highlighted snippets throughout the draft (including, say, setting descriptions for “description”) would appear in the editor, lined up like Scrivenings. When cmd-clicking all three assigned keywords, only the physical description snippets of the protagonist would line up, so it would be easy to track the consistency or even the dramatic arc of the protagonist’s physical attributes ( the main overall value would be to track plot threads, red herrings etc.). Currently, Scrivener’s keywords can only be attached to a certain scene, not a snippet of text within a scene and, as far as I could observe, they are not truly hierarchical (clicking the keyword “Setting”, for instance, does not also bring up the scenes attached to “Home Town”, even if “Home Town” is a child of “Setting”).
Being able to highlight a full paragraph and assigning it, for instance, “protagonist” and “introduction”, then, within that paragraph, “description”, and within description, assigning, say, “red herring 1” to the ‘umbrella’, would help tremendously in keeping track of gordian-knot-type plot threads and following their development throughout the story. In Ulysses, you can achieve something almost satisfactory by assigning filters to Annotation | Text, but you can’t annotate a snippet of text more than once, for instance, to single out the red-herring in the physical description, and search results still bring out the complete scene, instead of the relevant snippets only, aligned for easy viewing.

I know this is a lot to ask, but other users may find value in such features in their own ways too, so I’d just like to add my voice for back-log consideration. If anything above was confusing, please don’t hesitate to let me know!
And thanks again for developing Scrivener, which is already such a joy to use :smiley:

P.S. Also adding my vote for Scrivener for Android (using Mac desktop but Android phone here :confused: ) and a dark interface :slight_smile: