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  • Writer's pictureDiem Burden

How to organise multiple short stories (or books) into one large book in Scrivener.

If you are using Literature & Latte's superb writing program, Scrivener, and have a collection of short stories or a series of smaller books written with it, and you now wish to collate all of those separate parts into one book, what's the best way to do it?

Well, first of all, I have to tell you that I'm no Scrivener expert - you may even have a much better way of doing this than the one I've come up with! I have been using Scrivener for over 10 years now and have written five such books with it, which have all been published independently (see my books), but I've still got a lot to learn regarding the program.

I do, however, now wish to put those five parts (or books) into one larger collection (or single book) so that I can sell it at 2,99.

And this is how I went about it:

Firstly, I really didn't want to tinker with the original, individual books that have been left sitting there untouched since being published. I really want to be able to go back to each of those books and republish if needed, either with errors corrected or updates, and I just didn't want to risk messing with those proven babies. They are fine, just leave 'em be! So I did!

This is the method I used, and it took me about an hour, although I still have some testing and fine-tuning to do:

  1. First, I created a new folder in the binder beneath those books and labelled it with the name of the new book (in this case, The Rozzers, The Collection).

  2. Then I clicked on the folder containing the whole contents of the original book 1 and copied and pasted it into the new Rozzers folder.

  3. This I repeated for books 2 - 5, which meant that I ended up with a duplicate of all five books in a new folder with which to work on, thus leaving the original books untouched, undamaged, and therefore still useable should the need arise.

  4. Working only with the new, duplicate folder, I renamed the holding folder of each book 'Front Matter 1' to 'Front Matter 5', and changed the colour of the icons by right clicking on them (from blue to brown). This made the five books in the new book very distinctive from the originals, which helps avoid the possibility of my chopping and changing the original books and not my new copy by mistake (see screenshot below).

  5. I then went through each book in the new folder, deleting repeated files such as 'about the author', 'also by' etc, and dragging and dropping files in the binder and so on until I had the layout more or less how I wanted it.

  6. And that's it! I now have The Rozzers, The Collection practically ready to compile and test for formatting, and it shouldn't be long before I have it ready for publishing.

It really is that simple - and obviously reassuring - to make a duplicate and work only with that new copy. I've added a screenshot to help you visualise my method. You may notice a book located between the original five books and The Collection called Cop Stopper, which has not been included in the new book collection. This is a current #wip which is only going to be given to people who have signed up to my newsletter as a thank you, and will never be published (It's really book zero of the whole series) so please do ignore that.

Let me know if you think I've made a lot of work for myself doing this, and if there is an even easier and safer way to do it. Also, if you have any questions, feel free to pop them in the comments section below and I'll see if I can help you.

Thanks for visiting!


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