Corks: possible to add text directly to underlying document?

Ma
Maimonides_Mozart
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:18 pm
Platform: Mac

Tue Aug 14, 2012 4:04 am Post

1. This is why I suggested that notecards could be divided into two sections: the top for the title and synopsis and the bottom for the text.


KB wrote:That would be impractical. You'd be able to fit about two words of the text on the card, and it would really mix metaphors. Index cards in the real world have a title and a text area (the synopsis in Scrivener).


The notecard metaphor was exactly what confused me initially, because Scrivener follows the metaphor but it doesn't really follow it one crucial respect--notecards have two sides. You are right, on a real notecard you would only be able to write a title and synopsis and maybe attach it to a document that contains the text document, but the notecard is only linked to that document, they are not the same. In a computer program however, that metaphor can be expanded in ways that go beyond the actual thing itself. Also, on a notecard, text can be written on both sides. So another possible way to implement what I've suggested could be to have the notecard have two sides: the front of the notecard would function as it currently does (title & synopsis), and the back of the notecard could represent the text document (maybe the user could click an icon on the notecard to turn it around to enter text into the underlying document that the notecard represents). BTW, my original suggestion (to be able to do it directly from the notecard itself by dividing the notecard) is the way most other notecard programs I've seen do it (e.g., SuperNotecard).

In any case Keith, we can both come up with reasons for and against this. The critical distinction is that your reasons against it are the ones that matter. As I said before, I accept that and will not bring this up again moving forward. Please disregard my other suggestion above (two sided notecards) since I already know that you think this does not make sense. Thanks for the replies clarifying this but now I just want to find a solution to my problem.

This is something that I've tried and seems to work.
1. I pasted the 60 page document into Scrivener and selected it in the Binder.
2. I locked the editor in place so that the document can always stay in the editor.
3. I created the structure of folders and sub-folders in the Binder.
4. I selected each area in the document and dragged the items into the Binder folders/sub-folders (turning each individual idea into its own document).
5. Moved these individual documents around as needed.

Looking back, a huge part of the problem is that I like to just sit and write everything that comes to mind for a particular project first (stream of consciousness) and organize the resulting mess afterwards. I think that in the future this process might be easier if I did all of this from Scrivener itself from the beginning, but I really don't want to stop my thinking at this stage by stopping and thinking about organization. I really don't know what the organization is going to be until I write all of my notes and go through them.

I'll try some of the solutions suggested here and get back to let you know how it goes.

Also, how can you re-arrange the order of folders directly from the Binder? For example, if I want to place Folder X below Folder B by dragging it down the folder tries to become a sub-folder and does not go below it (this only works if you drag folders up, not down). You can drag folders up and down in the outliner without making sub-folders.

Thanks.

Ma
Maimonides_Mozart
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:18 pm
Platform: Mac

Tue Aug 14, 2012 4:17 am Post

brookter wrote:
1. Highlight text in source document in Scrivener.
2. Right click > Append Selection to Document > [choose from list]
David


This is perfect! Thank you so much Al and David for your combined hints. I came up with something close to this in my previous post, but I think this will work better.

Do you guys have any suggestions on what I can adapt my workflow in the future avoid these kind of problems? I have to write a 10,000 word article by next February and would like to streamline this process before I begin that. The source of this article will probably be a 20-40 page document full of notes. Should I just work directly in Scrivener and try to outline as I go? As I said earlier, I like writing the notes, organizing them, and then writing.

Thanks for the solution and for all of your time/help guys.

br
brookter
Posts: 2181
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:22 pm
Platform: Mac

Tue Aug 14, 2012 8:00 am Post

There are several ways of approaching this -- here's one suggestion...

Don't bother with one document for all the notes. When you have a new thought, create a new card.

Have you explored the Freeform cork board option yet (View > Corkboard options > Freeform)? Basically, it's the corkboard, but you can move the cards around without enforcing a structure until you're ready to do it.

So you could (for example), start a new project for your article, then:

1) Under the Research folder, enter Freeform cork board

2) cmd-N for new card, add quick title, tab to synopsis, enter idea. Repeat -- one idea per card.

3) Once you've got all your ideas, highlight them all in the binder, then Documents > Send Synopses to Main Text You've now got your notes in the documents themselves.

4) Play around with the order of the notes in the corkboard till you're happy, then Commit the Freeform Order (button at bottom right of corkboard screen).

5) Duplicate them to the Draft folder (so you've got a copy in Research of your base notes for future reference).You've now got a basic structure for your argument, to which you can add the superstructure of Chapter / Section folders etc.

6) If you wanted, you could then go through the structure, merging the documents where appropriate (select them, shift-cmd-M) to give you bigger chunks to work on...

7) Write the final article....

Just a suggestion to try. There are many wrinkles you could use to refine it -- e.g. assigning different keywords to different themes of idea so you could collect all cards about 'Wheelbarrows" together in one place later.

Hope it gives you something to work on.

mb
mbbntu
Posts: 1267
Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2007 9:44 am
Platform: Mac + iOS
Location: Cambridge, UK.

Tue Aug 14, 2012 10:30 am Post

Different people work in very different ways. Personally, I've never written a synopsis, and never used the corkboard (and I've been using Scrivener off and on since 2006-7).

My approach is to create a document, open it in the main editor, and then write every single idea or thought that comes to me on a different line, with a number of carriage returns in between that vaguely relates to how connected or disconnected the ideas are (sometimes I also indent text to show that it is separate, or perhaps that it is a sub-idea). When working with a source text, Scrivener is ideal, because one can have the source in one split of the main editor window, and one's own text in the other split.

Eventually, I either move the ideas in my own text closer to each other within the document according to their relationships with each other, or split the document using Cmd-K, giving each new document a short title that reflects the main idea contained within it, then use the Binder to move those documents into an order that reflects the relationship between them. I typically work with each paragraph in a separate document. If I need to see the whole text, I use Scrivenings view. I can have as much or as little in the main editing window as I like.

The Binder is my main tool for organising things, not the corkboard. It has the considerable advantage over the corkboard that you can see sub-documents and collapse and expand the outline as you like. And with sections of text as short as a paragraph, a synopsis is of little use, I find. The title of each document tells me all I need to know about what is in it. I have used this method both for a long thesis (100,000 words) and shorter pieces.

A couple of other things to try -- for brainstorming, I sometimes use OmniOutliner. It will export to OPML, which can be imported into Scrivener. For quick notes, I have come to find nvALT very useful, though it took me some time to see its value.

As they say, each to his own, and your mileage may vary.

Martin.
You should judge people not by how close they get to the top, but by how far they have come from the bottom. Some people have a mountain to climb just to get to the place where others start out. (Me, 2010)

User avatar
robertdguthrie
Posts: 3075
Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 10:06 pm
Platform: Mac
Location: St. Louis, MO, USA
Contact:

Tue Aug 14, 2012 1:57 pm Post

Maimonides_Mozart wrote:Looking back, a huge part of the problem is that I like to just sit and write everything that comes to mind for a particular project first (stream of consciousness) and organize the resulting mess afterwards. I think that in the future this process might be easier if I did all of this from Scrivener itself from the beginning, but I really don't want to stop my thinking at this stage by stopping and thinking about organization. I really don't know what the organization is going to be until I write all of my notes and go through them.


In cork board mode, you can just use the ENTER key to create a new note, type in a title, hit TAB, type in a synopsis and then hit ENTER to get out of editing the synopsis (an option exists to allow entering paragraphs instead of stopping the edit of the synopsis). ENTER will then create a new index card and set you up to type in a title, etc., etc... There's no need to organize, and if you don't know what the title should be, just double-tapping the ENTER key will get you to the text area to start writing. When you're done brainstorming, you can play with the order and/or sort them into different folders.

You don't have to worry about structure up front. When I'm brainstorming in Scrivener, I just jot down new scenes inspired by my story idea until I start to feel that there's enough there to hang a plot off of. Then I start rearranging the cards and adding new ones to fill obvious gaps. Only when I've got too many to manage in one spot do I start organizing them into Act folders.
Often wrong, rarely in doubt.
Time for a change... I'm now rdale; same dog-avatar, same dog... channel?

User avatar
phil
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2012 10:44 am
Platform: Windows
Location: England

Tue Aug 14, 2012 3:19 pm Post

That works for me too. When an idea hits me, I write it down. If I don't, I'll lose it. Nothing seems quite so tragic as an idea lost. I can come back and develop those ideas later, sometimes while I'm working on something else entirely, and the corkboard is an ideal place to dump random thoughts.

I strongly like the way that Scrivener deliberately fails to impose structure and organisation, yet gives you the tools to add those very same elements. The more I use the program, the more flexible I find it, and that's just as well because I have no idea how I want to work; I just get on and do it.

Aside from any technical issues regarding changing the way Scrivener works, I also would be dismayed at anything that limits its flexibility in any manner or form.
--
Very funny Scotty, now beam down my clothes!

mi
michaelbywater
Posts: 276
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2006 7:02 pm

Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:42 pm Post

There's no practical reason I couldn't get rid of Scrivener's main editor altogether and replace it with a photo of Bob Monkhouse.


Yes! That's what's been wrong with Scrivener ALL ALONG. I see it now.

Just do it, Keith, there's a good chap.

br
brookter
Posts: 2181
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:22 pm
Platform: Mac

Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:02 pm Post

Well, I'm not so sure. Yes to Bob Monkhouse. Obviously.

But it would have to be in white on a blue background, otherwise the deal's off. No professional writer would use anything else.

Hu
Hugh
Posts: 2444
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2007 12:05 pm
Platform: Mac
Location: UK

Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:09 pm Post

brookter wrote:Well, I'm not so sure. Yes to Bob Monkhouse. Obviously.

But it would have to be in white on a blue background, otherwise the deal's off. No professional writer would use anything else.


:D

And who now remembers Denis Goodwin, the man who was Ernie Wise to Bob's Eric Morecambe? He'd have to be in the picture too.

[Sorry, trans-Atlatic readers. Suffice to say that Bob went to the same school as Raymond Chandler.]
'Listen, some quiet night, when you've shirked your work that day. Do you hear
that distant, almost inaudible clicking sound? That's one of your
competitors, working away in the night in
Paris or London or Erie, PA.'

Ma
Maimonides_Mozart
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:18 pm
Platform: Mac

Sat Aug 18, 2012 1:27 am Post

I think I'm going to use a combination of Robert and brookter's suggestions (corkboard, individual notecards for each thought).

Thanks to everyone for all of the suggestions and solutions.

I don't know what I would do without Scrivener. Thanks Keith :D