Posted in App, Review

Scrivener for iOS Released


Scrivener for iOS has been released. If you are familiar with the Mac or PC version, this universal iOS app finally brings the typewriter, ring-binder, scrapbook, and more tool to your iOS device.

If you are not familiar with this app, think of it as a word processor that helps you get your ideas down and organized more than formatting for final production. You can “compile” or export your complete document or manuscript into Word, PDF, EPUB and other formats.

If you are a person who writes, researches, or puts together written projects, this is a powerful writing and revising tool. There are a lot of features which may, at first, seem overwhelming. Remember, this app is designed to help you get your ideas down, organize them and then export them into a useful format.

Scrivener Screenshot binder

A big concept to understand about Scrivener is the idea that each project can be broken down into smaller parts like text, research, notes and trash. The app uses a notebook analogy. The binder, seen on the left above, is the place where your project is stored and can be manipulated. Tapping on one section on the left, allows you to see your working area on the right. This is where you enter your text. You can create as large a chunk of text as you want or break it down into itty bitty pieces like note cards. If you think of your manuscript as a group of notecards, you will find writing much easier.

Scrivener Corkboard

The cork board is another way to view your manuscript. These pieces of text can be moved around like note cards to help you better organize your thoughts.

scrivener overview screenshot

If you plan on using this app on your iPad, get the Apple Smart Keyboard so you can have even more screen real estate as the software keyboard will be hidden. The software keyboard has been augmented to include additional tools. Above, you can see the iPad screen without the Apple Smart Keyboard. Below is a screen shot without the keyboard attached. Another feature is the ability to pinch to zoom in and out to make the text appear larger or smaller without actually changing the actual font size set.

Scrivener Screenshot Without Apple Keyboard

When you first get the app, make sure you review the included written tutorial. The tutorial is in the form of a binder. Walk through the lesson and get familiar with the app.

The ability to sync between your computer and iOS devices is limited to Dropbox.

The search capability is very nice. Pull down on the left side to search for terms.

The developer has a screencast showing an overview of Scrivener for iOS for the iPad. You can watch it below.

Below is a list of features provided by the developer:

Get Started
• Interactive tutorial project
• Keep each manuscript and supporting materials in a self-contained project
• Import Word, RTF, Final Draft and plain text files
• Easily split imported text into separate sections

Get Writing
• Write your manuscript in sections of any size
• View all sections as a single text using the “Draft Navigator” (iPad only)
• Quickly navigate sections using the “binder” sidebar
• Format with fonts and presets
• Comments, footnotes, links and highlights
• Simple bullets and lists
• Insert images
• Pinch-zoom to resize text
• Full-screen mode (iPad only)
• Typewriter scrolling mode keeps typed text center-screen (iPad only)
• Write a screenplay using scriptwriting mode
• Live word and character counts
• Set word and character count targets
• Find and replace
• Customizable keyboard row provides quick-access buttons for formatting, navigation and punctuation
• Comprehensive keyboard shortcuts for external keyboard users

Find Your Structure
• Write in any order and reorganize later
• Write a synopsis for any text section and see it in the outline
• Expand, collapse and drill down into sections of your project
• Rearrange sections as index cards on the corkboard (iPad only)
• Project-wide search
• Track ideas using labels and status
• Apply custom icons to your sections

Refer to Research
• Import research material such as image, PDF and media flies
• View research files or other sections right alongside your writing (iPad only)
• Every section has its own notes area for jotting down ideas
• Supports multi-tasking split screen mode (supported devices only)

Share Your Work
• Compile to a single document for sharing or printing
• Use different formatting in your exported or printed document
• Export to Word, RTF, Final Draft, PDF or plain text
• Convert rich text to Markdown for sharing with Markdown apps
• Create and email zipped backups of your projects

Work Anywhere
• Use Dropbox to sync between devices and with the macOS and Windows versions of Scrivener*
• Copy projects between devices via iTunes

* Requires a Dropbox account. Scrivener is not compatible with iCloud.


This very rough overview post was written to get some basic information out about the app and let you know it has been released. If you have been waiting for Scrivener for your iOS device, you should not hesitate to get this app if you want to be able to take your Scrivener projects with you. Keep in mind, not all of the features of the Mac version are present.

If you are looking for an app to help you draft manuscripts, documents and other written projects, you will find this app fits your needs.


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