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Scrivener For Dummies


4.15  ·  Rating details ·  480 ratings  ·  58 reviews
No matter what you want to write, Scrivener makes it easier.

Whether you’re a planner, a seat-of-the-pants writer, or something in between, Scrivener provides tools for every stage of the writing process. Scrivener For Dummies walks you step-by-step through this popular writing software’s best features. This friendly For Dummies guide starts with the basics, but even exper
Paperback, 402 pages
Published August 13th 2012 by For Dummies (first published July 29th 2012)
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Popular Answered Questions
Josephine-Anne Griffiths Hi Bill,

I am a fully-fledged newbie, so this question is a little tricky for me to answer. However, I am thinking that as Scrivener was originally wr…more
Hi Bill,

I am a fully-fledged newbie, so this question is a little tricky for me to answer. However, I am thinking that as Scrivener was originally written for Apple Mac, there shouldn't be a problem getting it to perform on an iPad. The only query I would be having if it were me, would be "is using it on a tablet too restrictive?"

Would this book be useful to you as you are using Scrivener on iPad - Absolutely!

I am a Windows user so this is just my two cents worth. The book was written with Apple Mac in mind, but so far I am finding it very useful. Go for it!(less)

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Aug 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing, 2013, non-fiction
What is Scrivener?  Scrivener is a word processing package that keeps your projects organized.  It is basically setup like other packages with a menu bar, toolbar, etc.
“Scrivener’s core purpose is to help you write.  It’s not intended to tell you how to write or force you to get the work done.  Instead, Scrivener provides an environment in which you can keep your writing, character sketches, synopses, outlines, and images in one project file.”
“Scrivener For Dummies”
Many of us are familiar wit
Sep 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The danger of using Scrivener is that you will become a spoiled brat. Yes, it's that good. The problem, though, is that unless you're a technical guru or the kind of person who digs, digs, digs for information, you might learn the basics and be so content that you go no further. Hernandez' book makes sure you don't. She explains it in wonderfully easy steps and walks you through it so that you do learn.

Most books go too far one way or the other. Either they are too detailed and you find yourself
May 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I love Scrivener, but I LOVE this book. Ms. Hernandez has a lovely, easy-going style that explains the ins and outs of the sophisticated software program which I appreciate. I read it once, but now I'm going through it in more detail, trying tools I didn't even know were there.
Cheyenne Blue
Jan 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, writing
I'm not finished, of course. You never really finish a book like this. But I've been dipping in and out as I get my head around Scrivener, and this book has helped me all the way. This is my second attempt at Scrivener, and I think it's stuck now. While I'm still editing in Word (and don't see that changing), I'm now a convert for writing.

The book is easy to follow, simple to use, and I've learned a few tips and tricks to help me get the most out of the program. I'm one of those annoying people
Janet Sketchley
Aug 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is probably the only reference book I have ever read cover-to-cover. It’s definitely the only one that’s ever caused me to cheer.

Most users would follow the expected method of looking up their immediate question in the index and reading only the relevant sections. I did that a bit when I first bought the book, but didn’t find it as helpful as I’d hoped even though that’s what it’s designed for. I think I wasn’t very good at defining my need well enough to search for the solution.

Scrivener i
Mar 31, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
I have been a fan of Scrivener for a number of years now. It was recommended as a favorite Mac writing program and I took a look and then adopted it. To learn it then I spent time with the tutorials and knew then that I barely scratched the surface.

Still it was a much better solution then Word, and when Pages came along, Scrivener was still much better to write in. We each have the way we like to configure our space, but the research folder on the left of the main pane became a place to hold so
Alan Livingston
I'll have to echo the sentiments of other Windows users that this book is tailored to the Mac user (as it seems most documentation on this alleged revolutionary software suffers). The author makes a good effort of flagging differences in the two versions as she goes along, but it feels like that was done as an afterthought in editing. Other Windows users may feel, like I do, that I had to take my book and read it at the back of the class.

I'm not sure how many instructional books on Scrivener I'v
Christie Speich
Jan 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing
This is a great book for someone who wants more than the Scrivener tutorial and/or is too afraid to break something by just clicking on menu items and trying things out. There are step-by-step instructions to using the features and screenshots to help find what you're looking for.

The biggest thing that bothered about this book is that there was no distinction given whether a feature was only for the Mac version or both the Mac and PC versions. The author explains up front that she does not incl
Graeme Ing
Nov 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, computers
I've been using Scrivener for years and know that it's an extremely comprehensive program with a ton of features. Knowing that I had probably used only about 50% of them urged me to rush out and buy this book.

There is a goldmine in here, in the familiar light-hearted, easy-to-read style of the Dummies series. Not only did I discover complete how-to's (with screenshots) for those mysterious features that I'd never grasped on my own, but I also read about things I didn't even know Scrivener could
Mar 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writing
I am not a new user of the writing software known as Scrivener, but the program is so complex that I never felt that I was getting the most out of it. I have followed Gwen Hernandez's blog for at least a year and I had always found her advice on using Scrivener to be invaluable. When she wrote a book on the subject, I decided that I had to have it.

Scrivener For Dummies is a well organized, step by step instruction book on how to use Scrivener as a writer. Even though I was comfortable with the b
Tina Hayes
Oct 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, how-to
"Scrivener for Dummies" by Gwen Hernandez is a handbook for the revolutionary software used by so many writers today. I've been a Scrivener for Windows user for a little over a year, and this book had tips and tricks for features I had yet to use.

It would have been useful to have printed an icon beside sections that were for Mac only. The author does mention certain parts are unavailable for Windows, but there were a few features I tried to find on my version, only to learn they were Mac only.

Jun 04, 2016 rated it liked it
The book is written for Mac users, so if I were to base my rating on just this, I would have to give it a 5 star rating. But as I have a PC, and not much was included for it in the book, I have given it a 3 star rating.

Unfortunately because of the books lack of PC direction and information, I spent a lot of valuable time searching for menu equivalents and so on to get the same or similar results from the program that a Mac user would. Therefore, I think it would have been very helpful if the au
May 30, 2014 rated it liked it
The book is written for Mac computers. I have a PC. That noted, the book was useful; I learned a lot from it; I'd definitely recommend it.

That said, it would have been very useful to note which parts of the book were not yet PC-enabled as it would have saved me much searching of the manual accompanying the program (which wasn't written in a style that I found useful), or searching the Internet.

My use of Scrivener is very much improved after working through the book. I'd have just got through it
Jul 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2016
I really, really tried with this book. I find it unhelpful for basics, such as managing images on a regular page, or setting page size. I feel as if there needs to be a manual to explain this one. It's too dry, too cumbersome and not nearly well-enough indexed to be useful. I am finding the Scrivener user manual far more useful (it's available as a PDF on the Literature & Latte site). Plus, there's a wealth of resources online to help with Scrivener. I would turn to those first before buying thi ...more
T.R. Fischer
Dec 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
I got this book after a week of brain damage trying to learn Scrivener via forums and videos. Gwen made it clear which options are available in the Windows version, so I didn't waste any more time thinking I could do things that only the Mac users could. My second book was so easy to finish having Gwen's book at my fingertips. Her website also has many helpful tips.
Diana Belchase
May 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A great introduction to Scrivener whether you are a beginner or more advanced user. Gwen Hernandez takes a difficult subject I was loathe to learn and makes it simple. Pure genius.
Glenda Horsfall
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great informative book written in clear and precise manner. Really helped me to come to grips with the program and I now use Scrivener to write. Bought the paperback as I found it far easier to mark and find passages for reference. It's a large book and a bit cumbersome as an ebook; but that's just my preference. If you have just bought the Scrivener program, or if like myself you have bought and are struggling to get to grips with it, this book really will help. Highly recommend.
Lola Karns
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: craft-industry
This helped me more than the Scrivener quick tutorial. It's a comprehensive, well written, and nicely organized resource book. Because it's written for a Mac (and I'm a PC) and there have been a few updates since it was written, not everything in the book matched what I saw on screen, but for the Scrivener tools I most wanted to learn about, this book did the trick.
Christie’s Books
Ok read

I’m not sure this is a recommendation. I didn’t hate this book, but I also already have a help manual so....did I need this book or walk away better for having read it? I don’t think so.
Jun 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a great resource for anyone wanting to learn the ins and outs of the scrivener writing program. This is a great tool!
Ana Brazil
Nov 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm a dummy no longer!
May 21, 2019 rated it it was ok
This was not much help for me. many things described simply did not work. I am still figuring out the reason....
Courtney Rodgers
Just have to download scrivener now
David Roberts
Jul 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
The book I read to research this post was Scrivener For Dummies by Gwen Hernandez which is a very good book which I read at Scrivener is a writing software initially released for the Apple Macintosh and particularly for the OS X Lion operating system and I think the version in this book is a previous version which at the time had a cut down Windows version although in future both versions will have similar features. I did look on Google to see how much this software ...more
Stephen Hiemstra
Sep 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
Scrivener for Dummies focuses on introducing readers to the software. Author Gwen Hernandez writes clearly and with great enthusiasm about how to use Scrivener as a writer's ideal writing tool. She makes the case that Scrivener offers unique features that writers will love--I have also come to love Scrivener.

My own interest in coming to Scrivener for Dummies for more depth in looking at specific challenges. In my case, I have ported a manuscript from Adobe InDesign that I used to publish a paper
Oct 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I love Scrivener. LOVE. But I have a PC. The main thing this book showed me is that the Windows version is awesome, but the Mac version is SUPERawesome. I would recommend this book to anyone who has the Mac version of Scrivener, and to new Scrivener Windows users who need to learn the basics. I borrowed this book from the library, and once Scrivener updates the Windows version to be as functional as the Mac version, I will DEFINITELY buy Scrivener for Dummies. And I will change my rating to 5 st ...more
Matt Mayevsky
It's hard to find the weak points in this book. It is probably all you need to start working with Scivener. The author devotes much attention to the basic functions, but such is the assumption series "for dummies".

For sure you will not find instructions on how to write a dissertation here. The author operates an example of novel. Certainly the book does not reveal to you the secret of success of becoming a popular writer. In contrast, for sure (if you wade through 400 pages) you'll know more abo
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
If you have ever contemplated buying Scrivener or are just confused, this is the book to get started with. Gwen Hernandez takes all the guesswork out of the program, leading the novice by the hand through this wonderful writer's playground of information. You will be introduced first-hand to the myriad of things the program offers and you'll soon be on your way to creating the manuscripts you've always dreamed of. Run out and buy the book today - you won't be sorry!
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: paperback
Got Scrivener after winning NaNoWriMo - anyone who "wins" by writing 50,000 words in November get a discount coupon. Floundered around in the software, finding some things, but knowing I wasn't using it to full potential. Got this book. Got going in Scrivener! My learning style matches well with the Dummies series and I was thrilled to find one on Scrivener. Because of this book, Scrivener has replaced Microsoft Word for me.
Sep 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Good introduction to a a great program. I have been using Scrivener for four years and find it remarkably capable. I had used it to serve as editor for a magazine, and it was the perfect tool for me. I also have put all my seminary class curriculum and lectures into Scrivener. And now my congregational Bible study notes.

I learned a few things from this book. Once I review it again, I am sending to my son and his family for learning more about the program.
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Growing up, Gwen Hernandez wasn’t brave enough to share the stories in her head with other kids, but they usually involved intrigue and romance. She was raised in the Army and Navy, and married an Air Force engineer, so it’s natural that her Men of Steele series features military heroes and heroines who must overcome danger to find true love.

The former programmer and manufacturing engineer also he

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