New to Scrivener

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by chrisjg, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. chrisjg macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    After reading a few comments about different word processors I thought I'd give Scrivener a go, but I'm having a lot of difficulty understanding the way it works coming from a word user for so long.

    The main thing is that I'm used to formatting the style and layout of my written documents such as adding coloured backgrounds to parts of text and importing images with text written around them. How do I add stylistic elements to text and how do I see what the page looks like before I print?
    I'm even having difficulty working out how to put bullet points on to text.

    I'm sure it's a great program but it's taking a bit of getting used to.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Catch-22 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #2
    Scrivener isn't a word processor. It's software for writing novels, short stories, etc. There's a tutorial option in the start-up screen window that'll tell you everything you need to know about how to use it. Scrivener looks a little daunting at first, but once you get started with it it's pretty easy to use.
     
  3. chrisjg thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    #3
    Thanks. In that case maybe I should get a word processor too.

    Any recommendations?

    I found word a bit annoying to use at times especially when trying to move images around that I had included in the text. Hence the reason I looked into scrivener, although it will be very useful for writing my dissertation soon.
     
  4. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #4
    I use Scrivener all the time.

    It's better to ask questions of the Scrivener users and developers:

    www.literatureandlatte.com

    Their forum is active and very helpful.

    Perhaps the piece you're missing is that although you draft/work in the Scrivener environment, and are using Mac TextEdit, when you want to see how your piece looks, you create a compilation and look at that.

    You create as many compilations as you please, whenever you please, and with the chapters/sections in any order you please. It's a great, great feature.

    You can make your final edits on (say) the Word document you compiled. Just remember that any edits you make on the Word document won't be reflected back into your draft.

    Choose File / Compile Draft and go from there. If you don't like the way it looks, make edits (in the Scrivener environment) or change the compilation options.

    Scrivener expects that the final product will be in Word or RTF format, but you will write out that compiled document many times before you're finally done.

    Good luck. It's a very effective writing tool.
     
  5. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #5
    Your posting appeared while I was creating mine. You can get MS Word, or Open Office or Neo Office.

    Scrivener's not really for academic work, though. It doesn't handle footnotes and bibliographies very well (by their own admission). You can probably get a lot of mileage out of it during your drafts, especially when you're wondering about section order. If you use a simple footnoting/reference scheme you can probably stay in Scrivener for a long time -- but there will come a point when you have to move over and do all your work in one of the word processors.
     

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