Turn off underlining of highlighted text for comments?

Brand new user: still on my 30-day trial (but quite liking it! Probably will buy)

I’m thinking of using comments to highlight places in my manuscript where I want to come back and edit. I’ve noticed that when I highlight a section and then click it for a comment, in addition to highlighting the text the colour of the comment, it also underlines the text. Is there a way to turn this off? As I use underlining in the manuscript itself, I can’t tell if it’s underlined for the comment or in the base text. (I can easily kill the comment to check, but I’d prefer to just turn off underlining if it’s possible)

And in a related question: is it possible to toggle the comment indication on and off (so I can read through the text without the distraction and see if I notice the same problem place twice – that would also solve the above issue too)?

Can anyone let me know if I can do either of these things? Thanks!

Hi ardenbird,

Glad you’re enjoying the Scrivener trial!

At present, no, there’s no way to turn off the underlining on linked comments or to completely hide all the comments; the underline symbolizes the link, so it’s an indication in the text that there is a comment attached and turning off all indication that there are comments, while useful in some cases, could also cause a lot of confusion in others. (You can read a little more speculation on this here.) And it would be problematic if you tried to create a new comment at the same place a previous one exists, since you can only have one comment linked at a time.

So, some ideas that might help. Regarding the underlining, I’d wonder a) is it really vital that you see all the underlining–ie, is it really a semantic thing that you’re using to mark up the text for yourself or is it just occasional emphasis that may not be so crucial to note when you’re at the stage of revision using a lot of comments; or b) is there a way to switch the underlining (e.g. could you use italics during the writing phase and then use the compile options to convert it to underlining when you’re ready to export your manuscript)? Not saying either of these will work for you–obviously either may mean a change in your current work style–but it might be possible to find a convenient work around for the problem.

Keep in mind also that you can use the actual highlight function and inline annotations as well, in addition to (or instead of) linked inspector comments. If you aren’t making long comments to yourself but using the inspector comments mostly to highlight words, it might be more convenient to simply highlight the whole relevant passage and use the inline annotation to add a quick “fix this” note or to link a comment only to the final word, making it less likely you’d mistake the underlining.

As for doing a clean read-through, two ideas: First, you could turn all the comments to white (open all your docs in a Scrivenings session with the comments visible in the inspector, select all for the comments and right click to change the color), making them slightly less obtrusive. (You can also opt-click a comment’s disclosure box while in Scrivenings mode to close all the comments at once, so you’re not distracted by reading them in the inspector even if you’re making new comments.) Second–and this is the method I use–compile your text and then re-import it “clean”. (You could also achieve this other ways–e.g. copy/paste the Scrivenings session or duplicate the documents in the binder and then strip the comments from the new version.) If you still want it broken into sections, you can import with the “import and split” selection, using whatever section break you defined in the compile. You can go through this and make your new comments and then compare the two via split screen, which is handy. (Since you can only view one inspector while in split screen, if you need to view the comments themselves at the same time, you can use the Quick Reference window with comments showing or convert comments to inline annotation–but I find it’s pretty easy to note “hey, I marked the same place twice” just in the text and then to check my comment in each just by jumping from one editor to the other, given that I can only actually read one comment at a time.)

Hopefully you’ll find something that will work for you! Scrivener really is a great and extremely flexible program.

MM