Feedback Wanted: How do you structure your Scriv projects?

Which of the following structures do you use in your Scrivener projects?

Book with Parts and Chapters: Parts folders containing Chapter folders containing text documents acting as scenes/sub-sections
93
25%
Book with Parts and Chapters: Parts folders containing text documents that each serve as a whole chapter
30
8%
Book with Chapters: Chapter folders containing text documents acting as scenes/sub-sections
103
28%
Book with Chapters: A bunch of text documents that each serve as a whole chapter
48
13%
Screenplays/scripts - a bunch of text documents each serving as one or more scenes
24
7%
Screenplays/scripts - other structure
17
5%
Essay or document using one of Scrivener's template formats
24
7%
Other (please describe in a reply)
28
8%
 
Total votes: 367
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ptram
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Sat Apr 06, 2013 11:14 pm Post

I gave different answers, since I use Scrivener to write very different types of documents.

For monthly magazine articles, I use only documents for chapters.

For academic writings, I use folders to separate parts, sub-folders for chapters, documents for sections inside chapters.

Something similar happens for screenplays and novels: folders for blocks of events (call it parts?), sub-folders for chapters, documents for sections of a chapter/sequences.

Maybe you could use templates, with option names based on use cases: Thesis, Novel, Feature Movie, Short Movie, Article, and so on.

Paolo
Last edited by ptram on Fri Jan 10, 2014 11:11 am, edited 2 times in total.

ch
chantun
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Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:58 pm Post

I voted, but I wanted to voice my opinion about compiling because I doubt that the summary window will be of much help to me.

Gruber posted a day ago about how Fantastic lets you see real time the translation of natural language syntax into a calendar entry, and how that implementation is way superior to implementations that delay the feedback ( http://daringfireball.net/linked/2013/0 ... antastical ). That real time feedback is what I like about MMD Composer: even though MMD is obtuse, you can see real time what happens in the right hand pane, instantly. Then, it immediately becomes clear if I did a link alright, if I did images alright, etc. I think that approach would be perfect for Compile. All the options would become meaningful if *in real time* I can preview the effects of my options in a right pane. I know this exceeds what you're thinking on, but previewing , real time, what my selections do to my formatted document, that would make a real impact in my use of scrivener. I hope the suggestion is worthy for future consideration...

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KB
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Wed Apr 10, 2013 7:20 pm Post

chantun wrote:I think that approach would be perfect for Compile. All the options would become meaningful if *in real time* I can preview the effects of my options in a right pane. I know this exceeds what you're thinking on, but previewing , real time, what my selections do to my formatted document, that would make a real impact in my use of scrivener. I hope the suggestion is worthy for future consideration...


The trouble with this approach is that, in order to show the preview, Scrivener would pretty much have to re-compile the entire manuscript every time you changed an option. It also couldn't possibly show you how your work would look when opened in Microsoft Word, or on a Kindle and suchlike, because when you're exporting, the final look is to a large extent dependent on the program in which you open the file.
"You can't waltz in here, use my toaster, and start spouting universal truths without qualification."

Am
Amcmo
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Sat Jul 13, 2013 9:54 pm Post

Chapters with scenes.

All we need now is the iOS version, and all will be right with the world!

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gr
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Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:28 pm Post

I had to vote other. Your quick compile idea would not be useful to me with a Scrivener novel project.

You are thinking of the binder as representing book structure, but my binder is meant to represent, first and foremost, dramatic structure. These two structural ideas cross classify. (Which is why I sometimes dream of having a magical double binder.)

I think Chapter is fundamentally a reading unit, not a dramatic unit (like Scene). Evidence every chapter break that was ever placed in the middle of a scene! So, as i see it, Chapter divisions cross-cut Binder structure that represents dramatic structure. I also think it just makes sense to write to the dramatic structure of your novel, and impose chapter breaks afterwards. So, chapter breaks in my binder are separate documents which get sandwiched between text documents later. (Without wanting to sound too doctrinaire or bigger than my britches, in my current thinking, it might actually be doing young writers a disservice to encourage them to "write to the chapter" as though it were a dramatic structural unit like any other. You /can/ write this way, of course, and evidently many do, but should you?

My scenes don't always end up all in one document either, because scenes of any length tend to have definite dramatic parts which are integral to conceptualizing the scene.

For these reasons and more, my binder has a lot more structure than any of the quick options would recognize.

—said the amateur

P.S. For a dramatic example of cross-cutting, consider the tv series Alias. You might think that for a tv series, 'Show' at least would be a dramatic structural unit, but here is an easy counterexample. In this show (at least in its early incarnation), the dramatic structural unit, Episode, and the viewing unit, Show, were perfectly cross cut -- each episode started half way through the show and did not finish until half way through the next show. Another interesting example is Veronica Mars which layered so many dramatic arcs of varying length and states of completion that the viewing unit "Show" seems almost an afterthought -- tied only to some C or D or E-story. These are both shows people could not stop watching (and now of course binge view on Netflix). The reason seems simple enough -- their dramatic structure was not "written to the chapter", but was instead counterpoised to it.
Last edited by gr on Sun Jul 14, 2013 5:36 pm, edited 6 times in total.

dr
druid
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Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:44 pm Post

My Other is for classroom or lecture presentations.
Draft: nothing there
Research: week by week folders containing
Text, Images (jpg or gif), PDF files, Web links, etc.
Arranged in an order that outlines the discussion.
This creates a far more versatile array
Than PowerPoint or KeyNote can handle.
And most files are simply drag-and-drop.

as
asotir
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Mon Jul 15, 2013 10:40 am Post

One problem in structuring the Binder according to logical developments such as Acts is that, well, it prevents the author from splitting a chapter in the middle of a scene.

It does help the author in early stages of composition to consider the Work in a logical manner, and so can help to get a solid working outline. But once involved with the actual writing of the first draft, this must be thrown out to allow for the sort of free form cross-cutting that movies and tv scripts enjoy.

Even structuring the Binder in terms of scenes limits the author by preventing a break in the middle of a scene.

So some writers might like to structure the Binder in logical breaks such as Acts and Scenes without regard to chapters (and chapter titles), and then compile the solidly-structured First Draft as one long thread. Outside Scrivener in a word processor, working on second and future drafts, chapter breaks can be added according to other considerations such as moments of dramatic suspense or chapter length.

Or staying within Scrivener, the author could Merge all the sub-documents of the Draft folder once a satisfactory logical structure is reached, and then split it down again according to 'reading units' in later drafts.

Just a thought.

- asotir

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kewms
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Fri Jul 19, 2013 2:23 am Post

I generally have folders for Chapters, with anywhere from zero to lots of subsections underneath.

But I mostly put in my own headers, rather than having Scrivener do it for me. This is partly because I've been using Scrivener since before it got so sophisticated about structure, but mostly because the document names that make sense to me don't necessarily work as titles in the finished work.

I'm not sure I've ever used the Summary compile, though, so I'm not sure I'm the target audience for this question.

Katherine
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wo
wordchiseler
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Wed Jul 31, 2013 3:51 pm Post

My main Scrivener project holds a Series with the following structure: Book folder, Chapter subfolder, Scene/section Document, besides the separate research and story data folders. Chapter folders set to preserve formatting; these folder-documents contain the <$Title> tag; and the font varies for each chapter.

I kind of love-hate the Compile feature, since it unifies the font settings nicely, but it rips away italics and my quote fonts. (I use antique-style fonts for certain quotations from books/scrolls my characters are reading or quoting in their speech.) I'll probably sort that out eventually, but I haven't taken the time since I mostly use the Compile feature to send an epub copy to my Android for review on the road, or to make a pdf of a draft.

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kewms
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Wed Jul 31, 2013 5:44 pm Post

Just FYI, the File -> Compile -> Transformations pane defines how Compile handles italics and similar issues. The -> Formatting pane lets you tell it what to do about fonts.

Katherine
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MimeticMouton
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Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:52 pm Post

wordchiseler wrote:the Compile feature, since it unifies the font settings nicely, but it rips away italics and my quote fonts. (I use antique-style fonts for certain quotations from books/scrolls my characters are reading or quoting in their speech.)

Make sure the font you're using in compile has an italic variant installed on your machine. Italics should automatically be preserved (unless they're converted to underlines, which is handled in the Transformations settings of compile, as Katherine stated), but they require the proper font; the OS X text system doesn't just fake them by slanting the regular typeface.

For the sections with special fonts, in the Mac version you can select them in the editor and choose Format > Formatting > Preserve Formatting to wrap them in a pale blue box, excluding them from the formatting overrides during compile. (You can further refine how Preserve Formatting works by clicking the Options button in the Formatting pane of Compile, but in this case you'll want to leave "Preserve Formatting only preserves" deselected, since you want the font itself preserved.)
Jennifer Hughes
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Marta
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Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:41 pm Post

MimeticMouton wrote:
wordchiseler wrote:For the sections with special fonts, you can select them in the editor and choose Format > Formatting > Preserve Formatting to wrap them in a pale blue box, excluding them from the formatting overrides during compile. (You can further refine how Preserve Formatting works by clicking the Options button in the Formatting pane of Compile, but in this case you'll want to leave "Preserve Formatting only preserves" deselected, since you want the font itself preserved.)



Serendipitous. I was going to ask about this :)
Thanks
Marta
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MimeticMouton
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Fri Aug 02, 2013 7:47 pm Post

Marta wrote:Serendipitous. I was going to ask about this

The feature is Mac-only at the moment--I had Mac on the brain when I wrote it, since the thread is a Mac one, but I realise the poster I was replying to doesn't state if it's Win or Mac. On Windows for the moment you'll need to deselect the compile formatting override option entirely if you want to preserve all the editor fonts, or, if it's something that can be reformatted later, use something like text colour for those sections and compile without removing that (i.e. don't select "Remove text color" in Transformations) and then use Word's features for selecting all text with similar formatting and adjust the font there.
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Marta
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Sat Aug 03, 2013 3:01 am Post

MimeticMouton wrote:
Marta wrote:Serendipitous. I was going to ask about this

The feature is Mac-only at the moment--I had Mac on the brain when I wrote it, since the thread is a Mac one, but I realise the poster I was replying to doesn't state if it's Win or Mac. On Windows for the moment you'll need to deselect the compile formatting override option entirely if you want to preserve all the editor fonts, or, if it's something that can be reformatted later, use something like text colour for those sections and compile without removing that (i.e. don't select "Remove text color" in Transformations) and then use Word's features for selecting all text with similar formatting and adjust the font there.


too bad, but thanks for clearing that up

:(
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Marta
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Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:55 am Post

MimeticMouton wrote:On Windows for the moment you'll need to deselect the compile formatting override option entirely if you want to preserve all the editor fonts, or, if it's something that can be reformatted later, use something like text colour for those sections and compile without removing that (i.e. don't select "Remove text color" in Transformations) and then use Word's features for selecting all text with similar formatting and adjust the font there.



I did a test compile using the "deselect the compile formatting override option entirely" which you suggested

It gave me exactly what I needed. :)
Marta
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