Automatic links to characters and locations

User avatar
annewalk
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:29 am
Platform: Mac
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Contact:

Sun Sep 27, 2020 12:01 pm Post

I love using character and location sheets to keep track of important information but I hate searching out the sheets in a long binder. Ideally, I'd love to have Scrivener autodetect names of people and places within the manuscript and create links to the relevant sheets that, when clicked on, open up as quick references for referring to existing info or editing/adding new info. Likewise, I'd love for the sheets to autofill a list with chapters/scenes in which the character/location is mentioned.

User avatar
Chitra
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jan 08, 2020 4:33 am
Platform: Mac + Windows

Mon Sep 28, 2020 5:18 pm Post

Scrivener won't auto-detect/create links but you can add internal links to your character/location sheets. On Mac, right-click on the word you want to link to the character or location sheet; select "link to document". If you are using character name for example, and have a character sheet under the same name, it will give you the character sheet under "suggestions", or you can manually locate using further-down options.

For the other feature you're looking for, you should be able to achieve it through keywords:
https://www.literatureandlatte.com/learn-and-support/video-tutorials/organising-8-tagging-documents-with-keywords?os=macOS

User avatar
annewalk
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:29 am
Platform: Mac
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Contact:

Tue Sep 29, 2020 6:12 pm Post

Chitra wrote:Scrivener won't auto-detect/create links but you can add internal links to your character/location sheets. On Mac, right-click on the word you want to link to the character or location sheet; select "link to document". If you are using character name for example, and have a character sheet under the same name, it will give you the character sheet under "suggestions", or you can manually locate using further-down options.

For the other feature you're looking for, you should be able to achieve it through keywords:
https://www.literatureandlatte.com/learn-and-support/video-tutorials/organising-8-tagging-documents-with-keywords?os=macOS


HI. Thanks. Yes, I'm aware that I can link manually but I'd rather it autodetected characters/locations and turned them into links that I can click on as I write. That's why I put this in Wishlist! :D I'm also aware of tagging. Again. It's manual. I'm looking for automation to assist in writing, not more work for myself. I always have grand plans to add metadata to each scene but I never keep it up. I was looking at an ad for Papyrus Author and they seem to have auto linking to character and location files but I'm not interested in switching horses, especially as their most interesting features are subscription based. I'm a long time Scrivener user and intend to remain so. 8)

User avatar
MimeticMouton
Posts: 9046
Joined: Wed May 05, 2010 5:39 am
Platform: Mac + Windows
Location: city of rain
Contact:

Wed Sep 30, 2020 7:04 am Post

Wishlisting aside, you could streamline the currently available options a bit by making use of the "Automatically detect [[document links]]" option in Preferences: Corrections and then naming your character and location sheets precisely so that within your scene you can enter the location or character name with the double brackets and have it automatically linked to the correct sheet. If you have "Document links and bookmarks create back-link bookmarks" set in Preferences: Behaviors: Document Links, then that same action will also produce a bookmark in the character/location sheet linking back to the scene you're working on, so you'll get that list of documents wherein the character/location is mentioned just by checking the document bookmarks in the inspector (and you'll even be able to select the bookmark and load the scene right there in the inspector).

Using a text expander you could tweak this further by setting up expansions for your character and location names. For the wikilink detection to work, you can't replace the name with the full set of surrounding brackets unless the text is entered "by typing" rather than "by pasting" (you could do this with Keyboard Maestro, for instance), but you could have it enter all but the last closing bracket so you'd only have to type the final one. For instance you could set it up so that if you type "Adrian" in Scrivener, it would automatically be replaced with "[[Adrian]" and all you would need to do is type the final "]" to have it turned into a link to your "Adrian" binder document.

If you don't have a separate app for this, you could try using the macOS text replacements (System Preferences > Keyboard > Text), but these will apply system-wide, so you'll probably want to use some other trigger text other than the name. These also will only apply once you've hit the spacebar, which makes them less convenient, although you should get a little popup in Scrivener prompting with the replacement and selecting that will insert the replacement without the extra space. It's still more keystrokes than using a dedicated app, but it might be helpful. (Three keystrokes instead of four to type all the brackets manually?) You may also want to use a unique trigger even in the case of a dedicated app and limited scope of the replacements so that you have more control over when to create a link on the name and when not--you might do it just for the first time the name is entered in a scene, for instance, rather than every sentence. :D
Jennifer Hughes
(MM for short)

User avatar
annewalk
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:29 am
Platform: Mac
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Contact:

Wed Sep 30, 2020 12:09 pm Post

Interesting workarounds!