Creating a New Project from a Built-in Template

Viewing Built-In Project Templates

Scrivener comes preloaded with a variety of templates (projects with predefined settings) for you to choose from, including a blank one. Whether you’re penning a book, article, screenplay, blog, report, or research paper, there’s probably a template to suit you, but keep in mind that templates are just starting points. You can modify the project setup to suit your own needs later.

The New Project window displays template categories down the left-hand side, and the offerings in each category to the right. When you click on a template, a brief description pops up at the bottom of the window. Go ahead, check out what Scrivener has to offer in each of the categories.

new project window annotated

The Blank template is the basis for all other templates, and is generic enough to meet your needs no matter what you’re writing. The other templates have been customized for various types of writing, with additional folders and default compile (export) settings that the designers thought you might find useful.

Creating a New Project

When you create a project in Scrivener, you must give it a name and location before you can start writing. Why? Because Scrivener auto-saves your project every two seconds that you’re not typing or accessing a menu. So, if the power goes out, you still have your work. Cool, right?

Here’s how to create a new project.

  1. From the New Project window, click on the Blank category icon.
  2. Select the Blank template from the pane on the right.
  3. In the Save As text box, type the name for your project file.
  4. Pick a location for the file and click project windowThe Scrivener window opens with a new, blank project with the title you gave it at the top.

If you go looking for your project in File Explorer/Windows Explorer, it’ll be called <filename>.scriv. All Scrivener projects are saved with the .scriv extension.

Video Review – 1.31 mins

5 thoughts on “Creating a New Project from a Built-in Template”

  1. Bob Provissiero says:

    Dear Gwen
    As a senior, Scrivener Dummies patron , and tutorial pupil I’m stumbling at the starter’s gate with my novel. I’m in the novel 4 parts template. I’ve already named the “untitled” Part I folder and the first chapter.
    Q. However, there’s a mystery folder beneath, on the same root level as Part I, and before the chapter folder. What is the function of this folder ?
    Q. Can I make a three-part novel in the four-part template? I hope my screen-shot worked.
    Thanks, Bob


    1. Hi, Bob. You can add as many folders as you need to get your Binder set up the way you want. The “with Parts” templates just come with one to get you started, and the default compile settings (for the first time you do it) are set to work with part folders. All of that can be done with any template. Any files or folders that already existed in the template you chose can be deleted, except for the Manuscript, Research, and Trash folders.

      Basically, you just need to create the four part folders and place them as desired. Then if you want chapter folders in them, add when ready. Then you can put documents inside the chapter folders. Use drag and drop to move around, or select the folder/file and go to Documents>Move>Left/Right/Up/Down.

      You might also check out this lesson, which is a few sections ahead, for more ideas on setting up your Binder:

  2. Cindy Harding says:

    How do I get out of the Sample or Trial Project from Scrivener? I’m trying to use it as I’m taking this class but am stuck in their tutorial.

    1. Cindy: Since that’s a project like any other, you should be able to go to File>Close Project to close it while leaving Scrivener open. If you don’t have any other projects open, you might get the Templates window again. If not, go to File>New Project.

      From there, you can choose to create a new project, or open an existing project.

      1. Cindy Harding says:

        Thank you! I’m so excited to be getting somewhere!

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