Stupid question perhaps: I have worked out what the Editor is and that is where I write. However, when I write, the name of a scene appears at the top rather than chapter 1. So, in order to start writing chapter 1 what do I need to do?

Thank you


The easiest way to get familiar with Scrivener is if you do the interactive tutorial. To do so, go to:

Help > Interactive Tutorial

and follow the steps.

Good luck.

As Krastev said, you’ll want to look at the Interactive Tutorial.

To address your question, though, Scrivener doesn’t care what you call the first thing you write. You can give it a scene name, a chapter name, or no name at all. And there’s no reason why it needs to appear at the beginning of your completed manuscript. The underlying idea of Scrivener is that you can just start writing now, and worry about what things are called later. The name at the top of the editor window doesn’t need to be the same as the name that will ultimately appear in the manuscript, and there are lots of advantages to giving a scene a descriptive name rather than a numerical name.


Thank you both for your replies.

I think my question may have been misunderstood.

When I start to write chapter 1, I’m looking for something that resembles Microsoft Word or similar to actually begin writing. At the moment, all I have is either of two scenes contained within the chapter 1 folder. I have looked at a number of tutorials that all talk about the Editor but not how to start writing the novel.

So in short, my question is:

What do I need to do in order to start writing the novel - not making notes:

Thanks again


Nothing at all. You simply start writing, in the Editor.

If you are used to Word, think of the Editor as Word and the Binder as a file tree in Finder. One big difference between Word and Scrivener is that you don’t have everything in one superlong file. In Scrivener you split it up in small pieces, sub-documents, folders, in any way you want, and you can do all of that anytime. Before you start, after you think you’re done, in the middle of writing, every morning, anytime!

So, what do you need to do to start writing? Nothing. Just start writing.

Hello Lunk

Thank you for your response.

Just start writing is not an option if there is nothing to write on. I have, for example, an empty folder for a particular chapter. The folder does not contain any files. The Editor has a faint mauve colour and says, Chapter 11 has no subdocuments. So, I can’t just write.


Have you done the tutorial? Not videos but the interactive tutorial which you can open from the start scren, which is a Scrivener project in itself which will walk you through the basics.

A folder is a document like any other, just with another kind of icon. You can write in the folder document or you can add subdocuments and write in those. if you click on any document or folder in the Binder its content is shown in the editor. Just click in the editor then and start writing.

A mauve color? Have you by any chance clicked on the corkboard icon?

OK. I think I have solved my problem.

I need to click on Group Mode at the top (left icon) that will allow me to write.

I have also discovered (another forum) that I can create a new text document (which I was looking for all along) by right-clicking then click Add then New Text.

Yes, I was in Cork View so whenever I tried to write I was, in fact, writing in either a scene or some other note-making function of Scrivener.

I am now happy to have my ‘Word/Google Doc’ equivalent to write with.

At last.

Thank you

… which means that you haven¨t done the tutorial. It would save you a lot of time for the future if you did the tutorial…

What lunk said. The Tutorial exists to handle exactly these kinds of introductory questions.