When I finish...

Hi, I don’t know if this is the correct place to ask the question, but heck, I’m a bit tipsy. I just finished my first draft of a long novel. Now, what I want to do is to begin writing the second draft, there might be a third or even fourth!, but without losing this first draft. Should I open a new project or is there an easier, more “scrivener”, way of doing this. Mind you, I’m rather drunk now!

It depends on how extensive your revisions might get. If you’re just editing the text, but keeping everything in order, then use snapshots. You can always roll back to the “1st draft” snapshots (or just compare the changes) of individual text documents.

But DO use File->Back Up->Back Up To… and add “1st draft” to the end of the file name, so you can always get back to that version if you need to.

If you’re moving things around a bit, but want to be able to reference the older revision, try compiling it to PDF and re-importing the draft to your project’s Research folder. That way you have an immutable copy of your previous draft to look at. You can even fiddle with the compile settings to add in binder titles, synopses, and document notes to the PDF if you want to preserve that.

Thanks a bunch, I will go the PDF way, as I’m a bit paranoid that something might get lost. Thanks again!

Save as… is the easiest way to go. Save the project under a new name (add version 2 or something like that), and either compile to ebook and read on your iPad or print on paper and starting making annotations.

I’d echo the advice to save a draft 1 version.

But don’t forget Scrivener has several tools for working on the second draft.

E.g, in your new ‘Draft 2’ project, make sure the whole manuscript is selected in the binder and take a snapshot – give it a name as well – so you can compare your successive revisions with the original and revert if necessary.

Then, when you’re working on revision, have a look at the revision tools (Format > Revision mode). This allows you to make any changes automatically in a different font colour for easy reference. You can search on them using Edit > Find > Find by formatting. You may find them useful.

Named snapshots are what you need, I’ve used them for years and they are reliable and flexible. I’ve never bothered making a duplicate project etc. as snapshots are designed for this and allow you to compare across your revisions.

Thanks a bunch, comrades! Great suggestions. You guys are the best!