Scrivener and Other Writing Tutorials, Tips and Frequently Asked Questions

Scrivener Basics | Importing Research and Content into Your Scrivener Project

Before you dive right in and write a book in Scrivener, you might like to know that it is very easy to import any media documents or existing content into the Scrivener Binder; often already organized into sections.


In this post I will show you how to move content from one Scrivener project to another or import media files into your project by simply dragging files or URL's into Scrivener. It is great to have certain media files right inside your project. For example if you have an audio file of your transcript/manuscript you can place it in one screen and play it while writing it up in another screen using Scrivener's split screen function.


You can also import your book from other writing applications or mind mapping software already split into sections, which I will cover in the next three posts:

  1. Import Your Fiction Manuscript from Microsoft Word Already Split into Chapters and Scenes.
  2. Import Your Non-fiction Manuscript from Microsoft Word Already Split into Sections.
  3. Importing From a Mind Map Application Into Scrivener.

Importing from one Scrivener project to another

Once it is edited, you may wish to move a clean copy of your manuscript to a new project without all it's accompanying research, character sketches, etc.


Or if you are writing a series you might have a root project with all your research which you like to import into each subsequent project when you start a new book.


To import a file, folder, or even a whole project from one Scrivener Project to another: Open both projects and position one window on top of the other. If your projects have opened in tabs instead of separate windows, simply click and hold on a tab header and drag it out to the side. Select the files or folders to be moved from the Binder and click and drag them into the Binder of the other project.

Image files need to be stored on the outside of the Draft/Manuscript folder.

You are unable to drag media files like images directly into the Manuscript/Draft folder in the Binder. If you want images within your manuscript you need to drag the original image in to a different folder like the Research folder to store it. Then drag it from there into the Editing area of any document within your manuscript where you want it to appear.

Importing media files into the research folder

You can import files into your project from your hard drive or directly from websites.

Left click and hold down on the URL icon or document icons (encircled in the image above) and drag them into any folder with the exception of the Manuscript/Draft folder which is used exclusively for documents that can be included in your final export. 


It is recommended that you use the Research folder for all media but I place videos and images in my Character and Place folders, as well as other folders that I create in the Binder.


Scrivener supports most of the image file types as well as PDF files, HTML and HTM. You can access QuickTime formats like MPG, MP3, WAV and MOV from right inside your Editor simply by selecting them in the Binder. 


Scrivener 3 automatically fits oversized images to your screen so that you can preview them but you may have to adjust their size to suit the type or size of book you plan to export. Double click on your image to bring up the Image Editor to make adjustments.

To delete an image inside a document place your cursor immediately after the image and hit Delete/Backspace.

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