(I’m using the Mac version of Scrivener, v 2.3.1)

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Today’s quick tip came about because of a group email I received.  Essentially, they were asking, “is there a way to view the page count in the screen?”

This is an interesting question because ‘pages’ is how most wordprocessors (if not all of them), deal with text.  Word has a couple different views, but most people I know tend to default to the Print Layout View, which shows you a page (in the U.S.A. this is ‘letter’ or ‘legal’ by default).

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 1.57.48 PM

This can be handy, especially when you are looking at printing out pages say for a critique group or beta readers.

With Scrivener, the defaults are a little different.  You have flowing screens in the editor that can encompass a single Scene (or Scrivening) or your entire Manuscript.  I would also argue that the focus isn’t really on page count, but rather on word count or even character count when you get started.  But the developers of Scrivener realize that everyone works differently, so they strive to pack the software with options that will appeal to a broad user base – including a Page View option.

Here’s my handy-dandy Scrivener Walkthrough Project complete with some text from an old short story:

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.02.00 PM

With my Manuscript selected in the Binder, and my View set to Scrivenings, I can see all of the documents within my Manuscript in one long, flowing Editor.  I can even see a Word/Character count on the bottom toolbar:

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.05.21 PM

To switch to a Page Layout view, click on View > Page View > Show Page View:

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This shifts your View to something that looks a lot like Word’s Print Layout View as mentioned above:

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.08.23 PM

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.09.10 PM


As you can see, scrolling up or down shows you where the page breaks will be.  Also, you can still Zoom in or out (lower left hand corner) as normal.  This View pulls the page size from your Page Setup.  If you look at Scrivener Preferences, you can see where the default page size is pointing and where you can do some custom pages:

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.12.43 PM

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.12.52 PM

The Page Setup has all your usual options:

Screen shot 2012-12-21 at 2.13.19 PM

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So.  You could set this to the paper size that your printer uses.  Or to a paperback page size to see what that would look like.  Or tabloid – whatever, and you’ll see the page count on the bottom change accordingly.  If you’re moving from Word but still want to see that page layout kinda view, this might be the option for you.

…hey, that rhymed!

More Scrivener Quick Tips coming.  Subscribe so you never miss a post!