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20% off Scrivener classes with coupon

To celebrate Tech Tuesday—yes, it’s a thing (that I made up)—all of my Scrivener classes are 20% off through December 3rd with coupon code CT2018!

Want to love Scrivener but just can’t figure it out? Already love it but wish you were more comfortable with it? Or maybe compiling is your Achilles’ heel.

I have a class for you!

cartoon of confused man at computer labeled "Before" and happy man at computer labeled "After"

Scrivener 3 Fundamentals (Mac)

Scrivener 3 Compile Mastery (Mac)

Jump Into Scrivener 3 for Mac (FREE transition course for Scrivener 2 users)

Scrivener 1 for Windows: The Basics and Beyond

Scrivener 2 for Mac: The Basics and Beyond

Let me take you through Scrivener step by step. Every course lets you work at your own pace, and includes:

  • instant access when you're ready to start learning
  • step-by-step explanations in easy-to-digest lessons
  • unlimited Q&A with the instructor
  • plenty of screenshots
  • video walk-throughs (with closed captioning)
  • a mobile-friendly layout
  • all of the above indefinitely

"Fantastic course. I've been using Scriener for years. Long enough to think I know enough to work efficiently Think again. I was surprised how much I didn't know." -HSS

Don’t have time right now? No worries. Register today and start learning when the holiday craziness is over (or whenever you’re ready). Classes never expire.

No need to rush, except to take advantage of this deal. Coupon CT2018 expires Monday, December 3rd.*

Sign up today!

Enjoy the season,

Gwen Hernandez written in teal script

P.S. Feel free to share this with a friend. Or a loving family member, you know, as a hint. 😉

*Coupon expires December 3, 2018 at 11:59pm Pacific Standard Time. Don’t miss out!

Cool features in Scrivener for Windows’ recent updates

mouse cord spelling out "update"Scrivener for Windows has had several updates in the last few months. Even if you bothered to skim through the list, here are a couple of cool changes that might have skipped your notice.

Highlighting Affected Documents in Compile (version 1.9.7, October 2016)

I’ve been waiting for this one to come to Windows for a long time because it makes understanding the Formatting tab in Compile so much easier (great for teaching too).

What happens is that when you select a row in the Formatting tab, the documents or folders affected by settings for that row are highlighted in the Binder. No more guessing if you made changes to the correct row.

NOTE: If you choose “As Is” for a document in the Contents tab, it is not affected by the settings in the Formatting tab even though it’s highlighted. Same for documents not selected for inclusion in the Contents tab. I’ll be surprised if they don’t fix this eventually, so keep an eye out.

docs highlighted in Compile

folders highlighted in compile

Support for Non-printing Characters in Project Replace (version 1.9.6, August 2016)

Need to get rid of extra paragraph returns or tabs in your project? Doing so in the Windows version used to not be so easy. Now, with support for non-printing characters, it’s a cinch. You can use keyboard shortcuts to enter the desired non-printing character when using Project Replace.

Check out this post for the full procedure.

project replace

There’s more! Reading the change logs can make your eyes cross, but there are often gems in there. You might also find that a bug plaguing you was fixed. It’s worth a look.

The update to 1.9.7 is highly recommended as it purportedly fixes an issue “that could lead to the loss of text annotations during sync with iOS.” If you’re a couple of updates behind, no problem. You can skip straight to the latest version. Not sure if you're up to date? Go to Help—>Check For Updates.

Anything other recent changes you’re excited about?

Want more help with Scrivener? Sign up for an online class, read more Scrivener articles, or schedule a private training session.

Scrivener Updates

mouse cord spelling out "update"Both Scrivener for Mac and Scrivener for Windows received updates recently (to 2.7 and 1.9, respectively). You’ll notice some small changes in the interface—e.g. the Inspector buttons are now at the top of the Inspector for better visibility—and a few new options, but the biggest modifications seem to be under the hood.

New File Structure

In order to make them compatible with future mobile applications, the Scrivener project format has been updated. When you open a current project, you’ll be asked to convert it to the new format. A backup copy will be created in the same folder in case you have any issues. Updated projects—and those created with the new versions—will not open on older versions of Scrivener. They are still compatible between Mac and Windows as long as both computers have the latest software update.

New SCRIVX name (Windows)

Along with the new file structure, the project.scrivx file that resides within your project folder (<filename>.scriv) will now share the same name as the project folder, rather than the generic word “project.” For more on how the file system works for PCs, check out my post on Scrivener Basics.

New Tutorial

Both versions have an updated tutorial. I recommend the tutorial as a great way to get an overview of what Scrivener has to offer. Don’t feel like you have to remember everything you learn, just know that it’s there.

Have you updated yet? What’s cool? Any complaints?

For a detailed list of changes, visit to the Change List page for Mac or Windows. For more Scrivener help, check out Scrivener For Dummies, or my online courses.

Fall online Scrivener courses now open for registration

Image of Scrivener mug and course announcementFall is coming soon, which means it's time for another Scrivener course (or two). Based on student feedback, I've decided to make some changes.1. I am splitting my original four-week, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink course into two different classes. That means less time commitment per course, and less money to spend if you're not ready to move into–or only need–intermediate and advanced concepts.

(If you're waiting for a Compile class, don't worry. The next one starts December 8th.)

2. We're getting a new classroom environment, one that I hope will provide some of the benefits of the previous platform, but without the technical problems.

The new classroom is set up like a web forum. Not as pretty, but it allows for organizing Q&A by topic, and makes the content searchable. A big plus for those who can't remember where they saw a post.

To learn more–and/or to register–keep reading! Or, for more detailed information on all of my upcoming courses, visit the course page on my website.

Want to be the first to know when my next course opens? Join my newsletter.
Happy writing!

Scrivener I: The Basics and Beyond
Date: September 8-24, 2014
Price: $25

This class will teach you how to customize your Scrivener projects for the way you write. You’ll also learn simple but powerful tools for organizing, visualizing, revising, and sharing your work.

This workshop is for anyone with a beginning to intermediate level of experience with Scrivener.

Prerequisites: Download/install Scrivener on your computer (the free trial is fine).

Topics include:
– Creating a New Project/Scrivener Overview
– Working with documents and folders: moving, renaming, splitting and merging, grouping
– Adding synopses and viewing them in the Corkboard
– Using and customizing the label and status fields and color coding your documents
– Working with document and project notes
– Creating references to research material, notes, and pictures
– Using split screen and full screen composition modes- Creating backups and getting help
– Understanding the basics of compiling (exporting) your work to other formats

Format: The course is conducted in a virtual classroom, which allows me to post daily lessons in DOC and PDF for students to download, and provides a forum for asking/answering questions. The course also includes a weekly video screencast where I answer student questions through an on-screen demonstration.


Scrivener II: Intermediate and Advanced Concepts
Date: October 14-30, 2014
Price: $25This course will take your Scrivener knowledge to the next level. It's intended for those who already have a solid foundation in Scrivener.

Prerequisites: Scrivener I, or a good understanding of the topics covered in Scrivener I (see course description above), and Scrivener installed on your computer.

Topics include:
– Using advanced search and replace functions
– Creating saved searches and collections
– Tracking progress and viewing project statistics, including word frequency
– Using annotations, comments and footnotes
– Working with the Corkboard & Outliner (advanced concepts)
– Using snapshots to save older versions of your work
– Creating custom project templates
– Compiling (exporting) your work to other formats, printing synopses, index cards, and outlines

Format: The course is conducted in a virtual classroom, which allows me to post daily lessons in DOC and PDF for students to download, and provides a forum for asking/answering questions. The course also includes a weekly video screencast where I answer student questions through an on-screen demonstration.

Scrivener for Windows gets an awesome update (1.7.1)

Scrivener for Windows might be the baby of the Scrivener family, but it’s catching up to its big brother quickly (and, happily, making my book even more useful to Windows users). The May 27th update to 1.7.1 is huge. It brings to Windows some of the key features for which many users have been waiting, even if they didn’t know it. 😉

Here are just a few of the additions I think will make PC people very, very happy.

Creating a Table of Contents
Creating your own TOC used to be a pain. Now it’s a cinch. Just select the items in the Binder that you want to include in the contents list (using Ctrl+click or Shift+click). To create a TOC with page numbers (say for a POD book or Word doc), go to Edit—>Copy Special—>Copy Documents as ToC. Create a blank document and paste the list.



To create your own ebook TOC (maybe more or less detailed than the one that’s created automatically), use Copy Documents as Scrivener Links instead.

Preserving Formatting
If you have a section of text with special formatting that you don’t want to lose when you compile, you can preserve it. Scrivener will protect the font, alignment, font size, spacing, everything. Just select the desired text and go to Format—>Formatting—>Preserve Formatting.

Using Format Presets
Want to apply a group of font and/or paragraph settings to select sections of text over and over? You can create and apply presets. This works nicely in conjunction with Preserve Formatting to apply style and preservation to things like quotes, representations of letters, text messages, or emails, or subheadings that you’ve embedded directly into the text.

Presets are found under Format—>Formatting. See this post for more on how presets and preserved formatting work.

To add the Preset Selector button to your format bar, go to Tools—>Customize Toolbars. Select the Format Toolbar in the box at the top right. In the left column, select Preset Selector (should be near the top) and click the right arrow button at the center to move it to the right column. Use the up/down arrows to adjust its position, if desired.

PresetSelectorCustomizing Icons
You can now customize the icon for any object in your Binder. Just right-click the item and choose Change Icon.


Adding a Full Screen Background Image
In the past it was difficult to add an image to the full screen backdrop, and if you did, it affected all projects. Now you can quickly select a backdrop image, and choose a different one for each project. Go to View—>Full Screen Backdrop. You can then select an image from the list (culled from those in your Binder, if any), or click Choose to select an image from any drive attached to your computer. Click here to learn more.

BackdropMenuFullScreenCreating Multiple Project Notes
If you’re like me, you can think of several uses for the Project Notes section. No need to choose, or clutter up the space. You can now create multiple project notes and toggle between them by clicking on the Notes header. To create a new project note, click the Notes header in the Inspector and choose Manage Project Notes. In the Project Notes Window, click the [+] button to add a new note. Click the X on a note’s tab to delete it.


Creating Documents from a Template
Do you have a form you like to use over and over? For example, a character information sheet. Now you can create document templates and then create new documents using the template. This way you won’t overwrite your original, and creating a new one is a snap. The Novel template comes preloaded with Character and Setting Sketch templates, but you can create your own.

Compiling Your Work
There have been several much-needed updates to the Compile function. Here’s a quick list.
– You now have the ability to create one or more front matter folders outside of the Draft that can be added in when compiling. You can have one for your ebooks, another for your print version, and still another for your submissions to editors/agents.
– Windows has finally eliminated the need to click an extra button (Modify) to access the formatting editor on the Formatting tab of Compile. (Guess I should update some of my posts…)
– The compile preview should provide more accurate results since it’s now based on PDF output.
– There are more options under Transformations tab, like Remove Highlighting and Remove Text Color.

And there’s much more (e.g. adding custom meta-data, additional placeholder tags). For the complete list, click here.

Need more help? Sign up for an online class, read more Scrivener articles, or schedule a private training session.

 Happy writing!