Developing a story in Scrivener can be rewarding but messy, as its premade templates for novels and screenplays are functional but lacking. The templates below aim to give users more versatile options for developing their stories.
I use Scrivener for Windows, so all of my templates are designed from the Windows version, and I cannot be sure they’ll work on Mac, but you should still try.
How to Use:
- Once you download each file, unzip them to your “Documents” folder, or whichever folder you save your Scrivener project files.
- Click inside your new folder. You should see an icon with a .scriv extension.
- Click the .scriv file to open the project file in Scrivener.
- “Save As” a new project file name.
- Get to work!
Even though these are templates, the most effective way to use them is to open the template as a project file (not a template file) and SAVE AS a different name. Doing so will retain the internal documentation that comes inside each template.
Each template’s project file has a series of instructions inside that you can read for more information on how to use them effectively. Make sure to check them out before you dive in. Remember, these are readable only when opened as a project file, not as a template.
Important Reminder for Scrivener General Use:
Only files that are part of the “Draft” hierarchy are counted toward manuscript stats and compiling processes. If you want to include any document or folder into the project file that does not count toward your writing stats, be sure to move them to a separate section. The “Research” folder is already designed for this purpose, but you can create your own and call it whatever you want.
Below is a list of the templates I’ve written and am offering to whoever wants them.
-Story Planning General (WIP)-
This template-in-progress is a complete story planner from concept to marketing, or will be when it’s finished. It’s the document to use when you need to track your story’s progress from idea to commercial transcendence without actually writing the story (which you would do in another project file). Version 1 aims to help novelists, but future versions also aim to help nonfiction writers, screenwriters, and game designers. Get a full description and download your copy at the link below.
–NaNoWriMo Basic Template–
This is the perfect template for NaNoWriMo as it allows you to prepare for November, write in November, and prepare for post-November. Get a full description and download your copy at the link below.
If you like my templates but would rather check out other people’s templates, I also recommend the following sources:
Squibler: Has some of the best all-purpose templates on the Internet.
Scrivenerville: Has all of the other best all-purpose templates on the Internet.
Author’s Tech: Acts as a database for the types of templates you should be using.
Helping Writers Become Authors: One of the best templates out there for outlining your story.
There are more out there, I’m sure, so keep looking if you haven’t found what you’re looking for. Or, better yet, create your own template. It’s easy! Just start with a blank project file and go from there.
Some of these templates may appear overwhelming at first. Remember that you don’t have to use every feature they offer. Just use whatever helps you get the job done. You’ll figure it out as you go.