A great program marred by critical flaws in core functionality.

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Sanguinius
Posts: 617
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Platform: Windows

Sun Feb 16, 2020 5:50 pm Post

griffin1101 wrote:Lunk, As I mentioned, I am a long time occasional user of Scrivener. I do own a copy so I feel I do have a right to comment in this forum. It annoys me when I see throw away comments and insulting behaviour directed at people who have genuine issues on any forums. A few people will always go on the front foot to defend this product rather than taking these issues onboard and then actually responding in an intelligent and professional manner.

As an aside, I am not going to respond to any replies that include thinly veiled insults and the usual excuses that are consistently thrown up by a few people when someone has a difference of opinion in this forum. I have no issues with this software or its developers and have used it off and on for years now. It is good for what you pay for it but it does have its limitations and it just doesn’t fit my workflow anymore...


If people have things they need help with, then they should go to the Technical Support portion of the forum and ask their question. 99% of the time, those questions are met with good-naturedness and a willingness to help. But this is the Feedback forum. The sole purpose of this forum is to give your opinion, right or wrong, good or bad, about the software. It's not meant to be used for questions and answers. People are supposed to come here and voice their pleasure or displeasure about whatever aspects of the software/experience that they feel the need to express.

However, that doesn't mean they're just given a free pass. Since it's the Feedback forum, other users have every right to voice their own feedback of the feedback given. That's how this works. Free enterprise and free communications dictate that your comments are fair game as soon as they're uttered/typed/entered/transcribed. The people that give snarky/hostile responses (and yes, they absolutely are, in many cases) are allowed to do so, just as people who have complaints are allowed to complain.

If you have a complaint, fine. Post it, and be glad of it. But don't think that your words are inviolable. Be aware that by treading into the waters of debate, you too will get wet.

Am
Amcmo

Sun Feb 16, 2020 8:54 pm Post

As an aside, I am not going to respond to any replies that include thinly veiled insults and the usual excuses that are consistently thrown up by a few people when someone has a difference of opinion in this forum


Ah, but you did, with that response, and that is a point made by a number of posters. The statement, ‘I’m out of here, you’re all horrible’ so often made yet the poster hangs to keep trying to have the final word, as if that makes their case and wins the argument.

Think for a moment. Read the title of this thread again. The OP is basically saying, good concept, but L&L screwed up on the implementation (because it doesn’t work the way I want it to).That insult isn’t even ‘thinly veiled’.

If the OP had said something like ‘great program, but is there room for this functionality’ or something similar, responses may well have been different. If suggestions for added/changed functionality had been made in the Wish board, again, response would have been very different, but the OP decided to throw a grenade in the room.

Reality, there are no ‘critical flaws’, just a program that is designed to work exactly as it does.

Again it goes back to a point made many times. Scrivener is what it is due to one man’s vision. It does not attempt to be all things to all men (or women). It has developed to what it is with input from users where L&L have decided a suggested function fits with/expands on that vision, but as Keith has said, it is not development by vote, and from what I see, certainly not by saying your program is fatally flawed unless you change it to work my way.

You’ve said you’ve moved on. Good for you. A more helpful statement, seeing as this is a discussion forum, might what to and a why. Someone did ask that Q, but no response.

You state as an owner of Scrivener you have a right to comment. Of course you do, just as every who disagrees has the right to respond. In fact, I don’t think there’s ever been any requirement to own Scrivener to post.

From where I’m sitting, it seems many who claim regular posters who disagree with them are insulting, that the forum is toxic..expect the right to make a statement such as the OP and others while expecting everyone else to agree or shut up. Sorry, but discussion doesn’t work that way.

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DavidR
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Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:08 am Post

griffin1101 wrote:The other thing is this whole "philosophy" concept, which often comes up as a defence by the Scrivener faithful. This airy-fairy idea of what the software was intended for is self-limiting and will obviously impact L&L sales. Pretty much all modern word processing (i.e. "writing") software is WYSIWYG. Professional writers want professionally written software with all the standard modern document editing and management features (mostly based on MS Word; that's just how it is) and they will be happy to pay for it.

kewms wrote:Certainly for some writers and some kinds of writing, formatting is critically important. Whether those writers will be happy with Scrivener largely depends on whether they are willing to defer final formatting to the end -- Scrivener's philosophy -- or need to see the final "look" evolve as they write.
But for many other writers, formatting is either not an issue at all during the creation phase, or actively distracting. Those writers are Scrivener's core audience.

I have to say that I don't see why "what the software was intended for" is "airy-fairy." If someone tries to drive a nail with the handle of a screwdriver, good luck to them, but there's nothing airy-fairy about a screwdriver having a defined, intended purpose. As far as that goes, MS Word has an intended purpose too, as seen in its inclusion in a suite called "Microsoft Office." It works well for WYSIWYG formatting, but is not very good at some other aspects of the writing process.

And there is a writing process, which varies from writer to writer, as Katherine says. For some select few, the text may just appear in their brain from beginning to end and need only to be formatted on a page; some like to see exactly what the page will look like as they write; some write in stream of consciousness style; and for all of these Word will do well. But some get ideas and do research in nonlinear sequences, and need ways of organizing these and relating them to one another that Word just can't manage--it, pardon me, isn't intended to.

So, call it a philosophy, call it a methodology, call it whatever. I'll gladly do formatting and final revising in something else, and use Scriv for what it does best.
David
Scrivener for Windows Version 1.9.9
Windows 7 Pro 64-bit

What's the difference between a free lance and a loose cannon?

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ThomasMcKean
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Wed Apr 29, 2020 9:37 pm Post

Granted I have not read the gazillion replies to the original post (though I did read the first page), and this may have been mentioned already. but as a fellow screenplay writer, it seems to me if you want to write screenplays and know where the page ends (which I absolutely agree is important if not essential), you might want to invest in Final Draft, Movie Magic Screenwriter, or perhaps even Fade In. They will do what you want.

I have seen others on here express a dissatisfaction with the screenplay capabilities of Scrivener. But the bottom line is if you want to be a successful screenwriter, that will not happen unless you are willing and able to invest in the proper screenwriting software. And the proper screenwriting software is not Scrivener. I suspect even the developers will agree with me on that.

I have purchased both FD and MMSW, Yeah they hurt the wallet, but at least I have what I need to write a decent screenplay. For me, Scrivener is all about prose.
Thomas A. McKean, HOKC, K4XIO
Award-Winning Author, Soon Will Come the Light: A View From Inside the Autism Puzzle
http://www.thomasamckean.com

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kewms
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Wed Apr 29, 2020 10:11 pm Post

Scrivener's screenwriting features exist because people asked for them.

We have quite a few users who write in Scrivener before transitioning to something like Final Draft, just as we have many users who transition from Scrivener to Word or InDesign. Everyone's process is different.

Katherine
Scrivener Support Team

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popcornflix
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Wed Apr 29, 2020 11:36 pm Post

I'm one of the pro screenwriters who requested screenwriting features from Scrivener.

I feel your pain, but like other chronic suffering, you get used to it after a while.

I am disappointed that Scrivener is a Minimum Viable Product for screenwriting, but I value the organizational features so highly that I use it anyway. Not only do I use Final Draft for final deliverables, but I also avoid using Scrivener's screenplay processor as much as I can. I use the free app WriterSolo to write a scene, then I paste it into Scrivener. If I need to rewrite a scene extensively, I copy it from Scrivener into WriterSolo, do the rewrite and then paste it back into Scrivener. (WriterSolo is the only app I know of that can cut/paste with Scrivener in both directions. I'm very grateful that L&L added Paste Plain Text As Screenplay, which allows me to use this workflow.)

The workflow sounds complicated and inconvenient, but after using it for a bit, it's pretty easy and fluid.

At the end of the day, I decided I'd rather be writing screenplays than hectoring software developers. So I found workarounds that let me get the best of both worlds. It's kind of like building a hot rod instead of buying a Lamborghini. it's a little more work and not as slick, but you get to build it the way you want it, and still go fast.

I encourage you to embrace your writing again.
.:popcornFlix:.

en
entheo
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Thu Jun 04, 2020 5:04 pm Post

As an interesting aside, Scrivener came up recently in a discussion forum concerning an online platform called Notion. I would say the majority of members are digital natives, as well as being bright, professional early adopters. Many are involved in software development, marketing, client services, and so on who come to writing due to blogging, technical work, digital content creation, and so on.

The post was about using developing a book using Notion. Someone suggested Scrivener as an alternative. Within 12 hours there were several responses, most of them negative. Some were quite impassioned about their frustrating experiences, One specifically mentioned this forum, which they called a "circle jerk," and mentioned how ridiculous it was that the knee-jerk workaround was to download a beta that expired monthly.

Related to the content of this post, on the positive side it does seem that people are getting guidance about the tangential use of Scrivener. Though this individual was not a screenwriter, it appears she was interested in writing a technical book and not a novel.

On the negative side, and quite surprising to me, Scrivener's reputation seems to be losing some of its previous luster. This is something I saw little of when I started using Scrivener years ago. Again, a very small sample size and this may all fade once the 3.0 product is released, but perhaps indicative that some of the OP's woes with the Windows product may be resonating with a larger audience and overshadowing the almost universally praised Mac product.

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Astaff
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Fri Jun 05, 2020 10:44 am Post

The post was about using developing a book using Notion. Someone suggested Scrivener as an alternative. Within 12 hours there were several responses, most of them negative. Some were quite impassioned about their frustrating experiences, One specifically mentioned this forum, which they called a "circle jerk," and mentioned how ridiculous it was that the knee-jerk workaround was to download a beta that expired monthly


Being a Notion user I’m in the forum you mention. I am aware of a couple of posts you refer to from the words in your post.
When I saw the posts I just chuckled figuring I’d seen similar here.

Unlike you I don’t see any impact to Scrivener’s reputation, rather 2 or 3 posters who seem to be disgruntled that V3 is in beta and not released and that anyone dared disagree with complaints. There were other posters who commented how much they like Scrivener, probably more supporters than critics.

Just my takeaway.

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theswede
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Fri Jun 05, 2020 7:56 pm Post

entheo wrote:On the negative side, and quite surprising to me, Scrivener's reputation seems to be losing some of its previous luster.


If anything, I see rather the contrary. Version 3 for PC is shaping up well, and a lot of people are trying it for free. And the 1.9.x version is very stable and solid for Windows, and works fine when sharing projects with iOS.

Also, 1.9.x looks a lot better than 3.x. ;)

Thing is, Scrivener has been stable and solid for so long on all three platforms that it's pretty much a staple by now. If anything, it's seen as the gold standard for this kind of application. And as I've mentioned before, the number of such applications on Windows is very rare (something someone tried to convince me was not true by mentioning two applications, both of which are more limited than Scrivener, funny that).

And even on Mac, where there are a lot more of these kinds of applications, Scrivener still stands out.

I don't see how the luster is disappearing, in any way. There is nothing poised to overtake, as of now. And there are no major issues which are causing people problems - excepting working between Mac and PC on the same project, which is admittedly annoying, but not at all insurmountable.
Jesper Anderson SA5NEO
Computer scientist. Software engineer. Scifi writer. Scuba diver.