The biggest software advance for writers since the word processor.
Michael Marshall Smith / Best-selling author
Scrivener is a powerful content-generation tool for writers that allows you to concentrate on composing and structuring long and difficult documents. While it gives you complete control of the formatting, its focus is on helping you get to the end of that awkward first draft.
Writing a novel, research paper, script or any long-form text involves more than hammering away at the keys until you reach the end. Collecting research, ordering fragmented ideas, shuffling index cards in search of that elusive structure—most writing software is fired up only after much of the hard work is done. Enter Scrivener: a word processor and project management tool that stays with you from that first, unformed idea all the way through to the final draft. Outline and structure your ideas, take notes, view research alongside your writing and compose the constituent pieces of your text in isolation or in context. Scrivener won’t tell you how to write—it just makes all the tools you have scattered around your desk available in one application, leaving you free to focus on the words.
For more information about Scrivener, see the main product page.
*Although a NaNo demo cannot be provided for iOS, both platforms' demo versions are ready to sync with it, should you choose to add a tablet or phone into the mix. Read more about the iOS version.
Scrivener’s first users were Wrimos—I posted an early beta of Scrivener for the Mac on the NaNo Technology forums over a decade ago, back in 2005, and those initial users kindly spread the word about Scrivener and provided feedback that has helped shape and improve the program. It has therefore been our great pleasure to give something back by sponsoring NaNoWriMo for a number of years, and so here we are sponsoring NaNoWriMo 2021, with some great offers for those taking part. We’re also offering a special trial version that will last you all the way throughout November, even if you’ve tried Scrivener before—read on for details.
Scrivener’s trial normally runs for thirty days of use, but so that you can start using Scrivener before NaNoWriMo begins without worrying about the trial expiring part-way through November, the special NaNo trial available on this page will run from the moment you start using it all the way up until December 7th. So you can download it, get used to its features, use it for your writing throughout November - and if you like it you can buy Scrivener at a discounted price using one of the special offers below.
Purchasing for the Windows version: At this time, in order to purchase and activate Scrivener, you will need to download the normal version of the software. The installer can be run directly over your NaNo demo to convert it, without losing any settings or ongoing projects. If you haven't created your project yet, see below for how you can download the special NaNo template, with instructions for installing it into the normal version.
If you achieve your word-count goal to become a NaNoWriMo 2021 Winner, you will be eligible for a 50% discount off the regular licence of Scrivener (normally $49). Details will appear on the Winner Goodies page at the start of December .
Even if you don’t reach your target this year, you can still get 20% off the regular price of Scrivener by entering the discount code NANOWRIMO21 into the coupon code text field of our online web store.
Windows users: Click on the Windows “Download” button below, then choose to save the .exe file if prompted. Once downloaded, run the .exe file to install Scrivener. (Note: if you have tested Scrivener for Windows in the past, we recommend that you uninstall any existing version of Scrivener on your machine first.)
Mac users: Click on the macOS “Download” button below. Scrivener will download as a disk image (.dmg) file. Once it has downloaded, double-click on the downloaded file (ScrivenerNaNo.dmg) in the Finder. This will open a window showing the Scrivener icon and a shortcut to the Applications folder. Drag the Scrivener icon to the Applications folder icon to install. (You can then eject the disk image in the Finder sidebar.)
To get up and running quickly, I recommend you take a look at the ten-minute introductory video, which shows how to use all the basic features of Scrivener. After that, to really get up to speed, you can go through the interactive tutorial in the program itself by choosing “Interactive Tutorial” from the Help menu (or from the “Getting Started” section of the project template chooser). It’s rather thorough, and will take you a couple of hours to complete, but once you’ve finished it you will have a good understanding of what Scrivener can do.
When you launch the NaNo 2021 edition of Scrivener and choose File > New Project, you will find a special NaNoWriMo novel template available in the “Fiction” section of the project templates chooser. We’ve put this template together especially for Wrimos—it’s based on the regular “Novel” template but it will create a project with the 50,000 word target set up for you and includes several other extras to help with NaNoWriMo. If you're taking part in Camp, you can change the target to suit your personal goal. Regular users of Scrivener who aren’t using the special NaNo trial version can download these templates below (you don’t need to download these files if you are using the special NaNo trial version, because the NaNoWriMo version comes with these templates already built-in).
Download the NaNoWriMo project template for:
Open the zip folder using File Explorer. Drag out the “Novel (NaNoWriMo).scrivtemplate” file to your Desktop.
Double-click the downloaded .zip file to extract the “Novel (NaNoWriMo).scrivtemplate” file into your Downloads folder (some browsers may do this for you).
Installing the Template: click “Options” from the bottom of the New Project template chooser and using “Import Templates…”, select the downloaded .scrivtemplate file. Once installed, the template will appear in the Fiction template category.
Good luck reaching your goal this year!