The Outline sections presents a traditional linear outline of your book, and is automatically generated in Plottr using the content and structure of your Timeline. 

This article provides an overview of the Outline.

Intro to the Outline

The Outline section of Plottr contains the following:

  • Outline Toolbar > Offers the option to “Filter by Plotline” or “Export” your file
  • Outline Sidebar > Provides a list of your chapters / beats, which you can click to scroll the screen
  • Outline Content > View and edit the scene cards connected with each chapter / beat

Note: To navigate the Outline, scroll down or click the chapter / beat in the sidebar you’d like to view.

Manually Ordering the Outline

While the Outline is automatically ordered based on your Timeline’s configuration, you can manually rearrange your scene cards in the Outline to reflect your intended order of events. (These changes may be reflected on the Timeline, as well.)

To reorder scene cards within a chapter / beat:

  • Hover over the title of the scene card
  • Drag & drop the scene card above or below its current location

To move a scene card to another chapter / beat:

  • Hover over the title of the scene card
  • Drag and drop the scene card to its new location on the Outline Sidebar

To reset a chapter’s ordering in the Outline to its original default:

  • Scroll to the chapter / beat you’d like to update
  • Click the X button by the Manually Sorted alert

Editing Scene Cards in the Outline

You can easily edit your scene cards in the Outline. Any changes made in the Outline will automatically update on the Timeline as well.

To edit a scene card in the Outline:

  1. Click on the scene card you wish to edit 
  2. Update the text
  3. When you’re done, click “Save”

Note: If you’d like to discard the changes you’ve made, click the “Cancel” button.

Filtering the Outline

The Outline can be filtered by any individual plotline, so that you can easily view only those scene cards connected with it.

To filter your Outline by a plotline:

  1. Click the “Filter by Plotline” button
  2. Click on the plotline you’d like to filter by from the dropdown menu

Note: You can currently only filter the Outline by a single (1) plotline at a time.

Exporting the Outline

The Outline can be exported both as a Microsoft Word document and as a Scrivener file.

To export your file from the Outline:

  • Click the Export button
  • Select the Export type (MS Word or Scrivener)
  • Save the file to a folder on your computer
  • Open the new file

To learn more about Exporting your files, click here.

Additional Resources

Common Questions

How can I print my outline?

You can currently export your outline as a MS Word file and then print your document.

What do the colorful dots on the chapter sidebar mean?

The colors represent the plotlines of the scene cards in that chapter / beat. The colors match those of the plotlines in the Timeline section, which you can change at any time. To learn more about using colors with the Timeline, click here.

Can I customize the export to include only certain content?

Not yet, but it’s on our roadmap!

Updated on December 17, 2020

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