Scrivener 3 update incoming! Here’s a peek

I try to keep my insane, nearly fanatical, love of writing tools contained—at least in public and on this blog—but I have to take a moment to share how excited I am about the Scrivener 3 update that’s coming out on November 20th.

According to their blog, it will look a little something like this:

That looks pretty similar to the current version of Scrivener, with some minor aesthetic tweaks. But wait until you see what’s inside.

One particularly awesome feature for all writers, no matter what genre or subject, is the Linguistic Focus mode. You’ll now be able to highlight specific parts of speech within the visible part of your manuscript, like dialogue, or adjectives.

This is particularly useful to fiction writers for whom some of these elements of speech could be used as crutches, and need to be rooted out and eliminated. I can also see myself using this when I’m doing a pass at a long manuscript with a particular aim. Say, for example, I just wanted to do a pass to improve the dialogue. Linguistic Focus mode will allow me to be more efficient by helping me ignore any irrelevant text.

Super neat.

Another feature I’m really excited about is wordcount history. Currently, Scrivener 2.x only supports cumulative word count for the manuscript, and word count for the day. The new version can apparently log word count per day over a period of time, which is something I used to have to do manually in a spreadsheet, if I wanted to see how productive I was over time.

Now, it seems, all that will be done automatically! Fantastic.

One last cool thing to share is particularly relevant to indie authors. It’s not something you’ll notice much unless you’re publishing, but for me—and anyone else who uses Scrivener to create epub and mobi files—Scrivener 3 will now support the most current versions of EPUB specification, EPUB 3.

This should fix the Look Inside issue on Amazon that was troublesome to so many authors.

Literature and Latte says that….

  • Scrivener 3 can export to Epub 3 format.
  • Its Kindle export is also much improved, and should now work fine with Amazon’s “Look Inside” feature.
  • The internals of Epub 3 and Kindle files are tidier, containing only a single CSS file.

And the exporter will now also have a place to edit the CSS yourself.

So all this sounds great to me, and it’s easily worth the small price they are asking for the upgrade. New users will be able to get a 30 day free trial of Scrivener 3. If you’ve never tried it before and you like to write at all, it’s worth checking out.

I wrote a how-to book on Scrivener 2 that will still be 99% applicable to Scrivener 3, although perhaps missing a few of these cool new features. You still may find it useful.