Open Source Scrivener Alternatives

    The best open source alternative to Scrivener is Manuskript, which is both free and Open Source. If that doesn't suit you, our users have ranked more than 50 alternatives to Scrivener and 13 is open source so hopefully you can find a suitable replacement. Other interesting open source alternatives to Scrivener are bibisco (Freemium, Open Source), Zettlr (Free, Open Source), Quoll Writer (Free, Open Source) and LyX (Free, Open Source).

    This page was last updated May 10, 2021

    1. Manuskript is an open-source tool for writers, with outliner, character management, plot development, distraction-free editor, etc. Outliner Organize your thoughts and snippets in a hierarchical manner. Organize them as you wish, reorganize them on the go.
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      Manuskript vs Scrivener opinions
      Most users think Manuskript is a great alternative to Scrivener.
      A intuitive tool that is not overloaded. A basic wordprocessor and a binder. Feels a lot like pen and paper.
      Top positive comment  11 months ago

      3
      DarkRedman Mostly because it's opensource but also because the interface and features are very similar !
      Top positive comment  almost 2 years ago

      5
      RCLeahcar Manuskript is very much like a free lightweight version of Scrivener; does not have all the whistles and bells but it has a similar interface and workflow. Also has a timeline tracking tool which Scrivener currently does not have
      Positive comment 8 months ago

      0
      LapoMelzi Even if it is in the early stages, it is smarter than Scrivener. The way it handles revisions is simple and amazing; the Timeline is rough yet great -- and something Scrivener doesn't have; the tracking of characters, locations, plots and every other item in the story is easy and effective. Plus, it is still in development and hasn't reached its full potential. I have been using Scrivener for year, but I am enjoy this opensource baby much more.
      Positive comment almost 2 years ago

      4
      redbeardgrey Manuskript organizes a project essentially the same way Scrivener does: Project, Chapters, Scenes. It has all the essentials for a good writing workflow. In fact, it offers a few more tools than does Scrivener.
      Positive comment almost 2 years ago

      0
      There are many similar layout features compared to Scrivener. It also has a few features Scrivener seems to be missing or doesn't define clearly such as an outline process. However, it is very early development and has many bugs to work out.
      Positive comment over 4 years ago

      8
    2. bibisco is a novel writing software that helps you to write your story, in a simple way.
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      bibisco vs Scrivener opinions
      Most users think bibisco is a great alternative to Scrivener.
      callyw It is actually a better alternative to Scrivener because of its clear, organisation features. I wish I would have discovered this before I purchased Scrivener. Bibisco is much easier to use: You don't need lengthy tutorials to read just to get started. Hands down this is better.
      Top positive comment  over 4 years ago

      4
      laurafecco simple and very useful to know your characters!
      Top positive comment  over 4 years ago

      1
      Laughably bad. Scrivener has the good sense to stay out of your way when you know what you're doing bibisco not only got in the way constantly (no, follow OUR tutorial!) it also insisted on doing it in, I kid you not, two inch caps. Is this some kind of joke?
      Top negative comment  over 3 years ago

      5
      LapoMelzi Too strict in his structure and the same time not thorough enough so that the boxing in would by uselful
      Negative comment almost 2 years ago

      5
      thatmasquedgirl I used bibisco briefly a few years ago, and I remember it being packed to the brim with useful features. It's great for fiction writers because it gives them a variety of fields for defining their character. I felt the software was a bit too bulky for what I wanted, though. The best thing about bibisco is that it's 100% free, which is nice if your funds are limited, or if you aren't making a profit from your writing.
      Positive comment over 2 years ago

      -5
      Bibisco is free, has a very good design and structure that help to create a fiction book outline . The text editor is quite simple and working is quite intuitive.
      Positive comment over 4 years ago

      -4


    3. Zettlr is a supercharged markdown editor that combines many writing editor features and collect them in one application. It aims at speeding up your workflow and help you write without any interruptions.
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      Zettlr vs Scrivener opinions
      Most users think Zettlr is a great alternative to Scrivener.
      Zettlr is a fantastic alternative to Scrivener - give it a go. It's brilliant.
      Positive comment 10 months ago

      -2
    4. Focus on your words not the interface. Quoll Writer is a writing application that helps you focus on your words. Clean and uncluttered. Feature rich. Features are where you would expect them to be.
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      Quoll Writer vs Scrivener opinions
      Most users think Quoll Writer is a great alternative to Scrivener.
      Shares many features, but little of the clutter.
      Top positive comment  almost 5 years ago

      1
      - free -clean, uncluttered interface - easy and intuitive to use
      Top positive comment  over 3 years ago

      2
      shall No cost. Really solid features for writing novels or short stories. It's what I consider a Scrivener-like program without having the (sometimes obtuse and sometimes odd) interface that plagues Scrivener. Cards (corkboard), character/item tracking, notes, full-screen minimal mode, nice editing features, and no format lock-in make this a must-try. I will say it's not a pretty as Scrivener.
      Positive comment 9 months ago

      0
      Clean interface. No non-sense kind of software that has some of the same features of Scrivener. One particular feature I like is the software's ability to automatically link items, characters, places etc. to scenes, chapters, ideas, etc. so you know where every character, item, and place is. Great for keeping track of things in your novel. Has a few bugs here and there, but the developer is friendly, helpful, and responds back in a timely fashion.
      Positive comment about 2 years ago

      4
      RemovedUser Free; solid; several features; customizable; new versions released quickly and with new features; developer very receptive; great for writing novels.
      Positive comment over 3 years ago

      1
    5. LyX is a document processor that encourages an approach to writing based on the structure of your documents (WYSIWYM) and not simply their appearance (WYSIWYG). LyX combines the power and flexibility of TeX/LaTeX with the ease of use of a GUI.
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      LyX vs Scrivener opinions
      Most users think LyX is a great alternative to Scrivener.
      Scrivener is a structured editor, but it does not insist on the user using its structure. (Lyx does; you cannot deviate from its chosen structure. You cannot put extra lines in your writing. You cannot have more than 6 levels of outline; that's a no-no; you're "not structuring your outline correctly" if you have more htan that. In some ways, LyX is more user-condescending than Microsoft ever thot about being.)
      Negative comment 12 months ago

      -1
      Lyx is a Wysiwyg TeX editor. Scrivener is a text editor with lots of bells and whistles. They are radically different. LyX is quite useful if you're editing TeX documents or preparing academic papers for publication. It does outlining better than Scrivener, but it's got its own issues.
      Negative comment 7 months ago

      0


    6. Dendron is an open-source, local-first, markdown-based, note-taking tool built on top of VSCode. It supports all the usual features you would expect like tagging, backlinks, a graph view, split panes, and so forth.
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    7. oStorybook is a free, open source novel-writing software for creative writers, novelists and authors which will help you to keep an overview of multiple plot-lines while writing texts.
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      Some users think oStorybook is a great alternative to Scrivener, some don't.
    8. With Plume Creator, organize your writing projects ! Scenes, notes, characters,... Rich Text editing, full screen editing and multiple projects … Plume Creator gives you an outliner, a distraction-free mode, a note manager and much more!
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      Most users think Plume Creator is a great alternative to Scrivener.
    9. novelWriter is a Markdown-like text editor designed for writing novels and larger projects of many smaller plain text documents. It uses its own flavor of Markdown that supports a meta data syntax for comments, synopsis and cross-referencing between files.
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    10. Tree editor for writers, makes outlining your stories and articles easy, fun, and convenient.
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      Nulis vs Scrivener opinions
      pros, cons and recent comments
      No rich text. I need color changes to skim and find sections.
      Positive comment over 2 years ago

      0
    Showing 10 of 13 alternatives