6 Things I Really Like About Scrivener

If you're plugged into the writer community, you've probably heard some people raving about a revolutionary writing software called Scrivener.

Last year, when I got my MacBook, I decided to jump on the Scrivener bandwagon to see what all the fuss was about. I downloaded the 30-day free trial and set to work.

Over the past few months, I've decided that I really like Scrivener. Here are six reasons why:

1. Planning ahead

Thanks to Scrivener's flashcard feature, you can create blank documents for future chapters and write little summaries for them. This really helped me lay out a direction for my unfinished novel, and even led to me making some big plot changes.

2. Rearranging is easy peasy

Since Scrivener stores chapters as separate documents, you can drag and drop and switch things around with zero copying and pasting.

3. It's way easier to skip around during the drafting process

Because the chapters are all split up, you can navigate between them with a single click. And if you get bored of the part you're currently drafting, you can skip ahead and start writing a future chapter (remember the flashcards?). For my easily-distracted self, this is a great way to keep the words coming -- and it cuts down on writer's block, too.

4. The progress bar at the top

Okay, it's a small thing, but I really appreciate seeing visually how far along in my project. You can set project goals, and even session goals, which motivate you to write more. There's nothing more satisfying than watching that little blue line fill up.

5. The ability to make notes

There's an extra little panel attached to each chapter where you can add notes. I mainly use it for possible plot ideas ("Maybe he could betray her later? *evil cackling*"), 

6. Alllll the formats

Your Scrivener project itself is stored in a .scriv file, which can only be opened by the software. However, Scrivener exports to pretty much any format under the sun, including Word, OpenOffice, and Kindle. Yes, you can format ebooks with Scrivener! (I did this for one of my friends when I first got Scrivener, and it turned out a nice clean file in double-quick time.)

If you have Scrivener, what do you love about it? Is there anything you're not so keen on? If you don't have Scrivener, are you thinking about getting it? Why or why not? Share in the comments!


  1. I downloaded the trial version but didn't invest any time to learn it. Now I will.

    1. I definitely recommend it. And the great thing about the trial is that if you decide Scrivener isn't for you, you haven't wasted any money :)