Writing

Quick (Mac-only) Scrivener tip: find a character’s scene

Imagine you want to find every scene in which a character appears. There’s a variety of ways you could do this in Scrivener. Here’s a really easy one (and as the headline says it currently only works on the Mac version).

When you write a scene synopsis make sure you put in the names of the characters who appear. They don’t need to be part of a sentence. Just type them in one line if you like: Lund, Hartmann, Meyer, for example. That’s all the preparation you need.

Got to Edit, Find, Find Synopsis or use the shortcut Ctrl-Cmd-G (or the icon in the toollbar). Type in the name of the character you want to track. You’ll get an instant list of every scene in which the name appears in the synopsis.

If you’re a Windows user thinking ‘I wish I had this’ you might want to visit the Scrivener forums and add it to the wish list. The Scrivener people are very amenable to suggestions. Remember the Windows app appeared several years after the Mac one, which was already in version two by that time. The two are a lot closer already than old Scrivener hands ever expected.

Oh, and of course I’m just using characters names as an example here. You could just as easily find scenes based on a location in the synopsis or anything else you choose to put in there.

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