3.6 out of 5 with 14 ratings

Scrivener Reviews

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Windows users are third class citizens and never get updates within two years of Mac users. Any criticism of this policy on their forums results in locked threads, never admitting any wrong or responsibility to their customers. It's some of the most anti-consumer practices I've seen, especially for such a dedicated, niche customer base.

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This. We're in January of 2020, and they have missed yet another deadline. They don't give one single, solitary firetruck about Windows users.

Agreed. I'm starting to think Version 3 for Windows will get here around the same time as Version 4 for Mac. The Windows version is already sliding behind features for the Mac version with excuses like "Well, the Mac OS lets us easily hook into this feature, so the Windows version just won't have it at all." Here we are in September and a simple "Find & Replace" operation in the Windows version absolutely explodes ("whole word" replaces even partial words). If you want to spend money on something and be disrespected, choose Scrivener for Windows.


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The Windows version is outdated but Literature & Latte just keeps stringing Windows users along. Literature & Latte has been promising an update to their Windows version of Scrivener for several years. When I purchased version 1.4 around three (3) years ago, the website promised that version 2.0 was expected in the fall of that year AND NEW PURCHASERS WOULD RECEIVE VERSION 2.0 FREE OF CHARGE! Scrivener for Windows version 2.0 was never released. Now, 3 YEARS LATER, Literature & Latte is promising purchasers of Scrivener for windows version 1.9 that NEW PURCHASERS WILL RECEIVE VERSION 3.0 FREE OF CHARGE! The release is supposed to be soon, but I would not hold my breath. Meanwhile, Mac users are on version 3.0.--which I hear is great!

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Yes. Just to be clear, the new purchasers who were promised an upgrade to 2.0 and never received it are now old purchasers who aren't eligible for a free upgrade to 3.0, when--or, more probably, if--it arrives. They're just out of luck. I bought Scrivener in 2015 and I'm done. I'm looking for another option.


Scrivener won't save or backup...

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...and no one on the Literature and Latte technical forum has any answers. A myriad of other unanswered pleas for help there too.

Scrivener has gotten worse lately. Janky software.

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Firstly the software itself has been excellent and this would be a five-star review but for a deal-breaking licensing issue of which I was not aware when I bought my (fairly expensive) licence.

I am currently on Scrivener 1.9.15 for Windows and have 'owned' it for years. I recently became aware that it uses a rolling validation system that revokes your licence if the licensing servers become inaccessible, which has happened to me. The software licence seems to be written in the full awareness that the software could stop working (within six months of purchase they undertake to fix or refund, after that you're on your own.) Sure there's a free trial period but that's no use for evaluating a long-term licensing system that's not well-publicized in the first place.

Now, the issue has arisen because the original validation provider went out of business (maybe Windows update changed things too?) and it will presumably be fixed, but what if the developers went out of business? That's why I'm here -- for peace of mind -- looking for an alternative to Scrivener that I can rely on for the rest of my life.

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Great on Mac OS X, Good on Windows

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Scrivener is a specialized word processing and file management system for writers. It allows you to develop a new work, or import an existing work, and break it up into manageable parts. While designed primarily for fiction writing, I have also used it on a manual that required little advanced formatting.

I could not find a comparable product on Windows, however it should be said that the Mac OS X version is far more advanced than the Windows version - with features unimplemented on Windows. The Windows version is being actively developed but L&L hasn't really made much of an attempt to 'catch up' the Windows version. Despite this negative, I haven't found a better platform for writing fiction on Windows.

Scrivener does not have sophisticated formatting tools - but it does have some. It has everything you'd expect from a word processor, plus a whole lot more. However a major omission is two column formatting, which is necessary for a lot of publishing.

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Great software, but only if you are using a mac. As noted by other users, the business prioritizes mac users over everyone else, going so far as to port over to ipad while the Windows version hasn't been updated since Version 1 (mac is currently on version 3).

Also, thanks to their last license management company going under, their software now uses a service that will not allow offline activation. That's a big deal breaker for me.

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Has Appleitis: in Scrivener 3 (Mac -- not sure with the vintage Windows version), you can't delete 'Draft' and 'Research' folders. You're able to rename them but for some ridiculous reason you can't change their icon into default folder icon. You can't hide the trash folder as well.

There are also reports of users who lost their saved project. When they open their project, it was just empty. (They didn't tell what Scrivener version they had.)

[Edited by AB6hyF0, April 26]

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Inexpensive and powerful. I’m halfway through my third novel written with this software and I love it. I keep learning new things I can do with it. I’m a Mac user so I can’t speak to the quality of the windows version though I can identify with the user who complains that windows users don’t get the same attention—welcome to a Mac users experience with nearly every other software developer.

I tell everyone, use the free trial first, and take the time to work through the free tutorial exercise document before you do anything else. It isn’t for everyone and many get overwhelmed at first. The tutorial will teach you well and only after trying that should you decide whether you should buy it. Good news is that a license is super cheap. 45 bucks I think.

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Scrivener is a polished, lovely, well-made app for managing long-form documents. It's an ideal choice for drafting your first manuscript. The best thing about Scrivener is that it adapts to you and your needs rather than the other way around.

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Scrivener is the most fantastic program I have found for writing long documents. It is the ideal tool for writing essays and dissertations. it is like a mind map and word processor in one. The one huge drawback to it is that its referencing is garbage. They seem to have no interest in making it work for their users. there are convoluted workarounds but these take up a large amount of time and often don't work properly.

Scrivener 3 for windows is about to be released and may fix this tragic lack of function but I am not going to hold my breath for it. They have what seems like complete contempt for windows peasants. In fact, the reason I am on the alternativeto website is that I want to find something that will do the job that scrivener promises but fails to deliver because scrivener is so handicapped by its pathetic referencing capabilities.
This software has so much potential, though without "proper" referencing it is the equivalent of the navy choosing not to invest in submarines.

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The best bang for your buck. Totally worth it if you put in the time and effort to learn it.

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Extremely popular, but has a steep, steep, learning curve. Lots of bells and whistles. It's a powerhouse of a program.

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Personally, I enjoy being able to split my chapters into distinct sections, I like the new pages and seeing where everything is laid out. one of the great benefits of Scrivener is that you can see the different sections of your novel, sort them, and even put what stage they are on, such as to do, first draft, edits, ext. scrivener allows you to do multiple rounds of edits in a very clear and concise way, as well as helps to organize thoughts, chapters, scenes, and other entries.

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Hands down one of the best writing software out there! Great if you need to structure/write novels, plays, scripts, essays, you name it.

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