Bela Lampert

Optioned Screenwriter / Yoga Instructor

Follow These Steps To Write Your Novel With Scrivener’s Snowflake Method Template

Writing Your Novel With The Scrivener Snowflake Method Template

This article describes how to use the snowflake method template for Scrivener.

In case you’re not familiar with the snowflake method, it is a method designed by Randy Ingermanson that helps you go from the broad strokes to the details when you approach your novel so you don’t get lost along the way.

It is called the snowflake method because you start with a very rough shape of your story and as you keep going along you refine that shape more and more and figuratively speaking convert your rough shape into a snowflake form over time with all the tiny details that make it interesting and worth reading.

You can download the finished template and import it into Scrivener if you want, or, if you know your way around Scrivener a little bit, you should find enough information in this article to create the template yourself.

I’m assuming that you’re somewhat familiar with the snowflake method itself. I will not explain it in detail here.

If you want to know more about the snowflake method, go to

Okay, let’s get started.

Installing the Snowflake Method Template

Once you’ve received the template you need to unzip it and install it first before you can use it. Unzipping is easy, just double click on it and on the MAC it will unzip by itself and on the PC you will see the contents and you can click something along the lines of “unpack all contents” or something similar.

Anyway, once you have the Scrivener Template file itself, open up Scrivener and you will see the template chooser window.

When you see this, at the bottom left, click the “Options” menu and choose “Import Template…”. Then select the template file you just unzipped.

Scrivener now imports the template file and from now on you can choose it under “Fiction”. You see that is has a little snowflake icon here.

Click create and give your new project a name if you want.

Using the Snowflake Method Template

When you open up the template, what you see is an information page that explains basically how you can use the snowflake method template. It’s what we cover in this article.

I based the snowflake template on the novel template. So it has everything the novel template also has, I just added a couple of things on top of it.

Let’s have a look.

Snowflake Method Binder Structure

The binder structure in and of itself is the same as in the novel template, I just added a folder at the top of the draft that contains all the snowflake method documents, or rather: steps.

There is one document for each step that is recommended. You can see from the icons of the documents that if you follow these steps closely that your story goes from a very rough shape to a very difined and beautiful snowflake.

If you click on one of the snowflake step documents and you take a look at the notes section in the inspector, you see that there is a little reminder of what each step is about. It’s not a full-out explanation and it won’t serve you much if you have no idea what the snowflake method is.

But if you know roughly what it’s about and maybe you’ve worked with it before, this should be enough to keep you on track.

One word about the character step.

If you go to the template folder you see that there are now two character sketch documents. The Scrivener novel template only holds one.

This is because this I added this “snowflake character” sketch document and it holds exactly the points about the character step that are recommenden going through all these steps.

But still, you have the standard characters sketch also, so you can decide if you maybe want to work with that one also.

And that’s basically it.

Using the Novel Template

So, you can use all these snowflake step documents for the development of your novel and once you’ve gone through all of these you’ll be well prepared for going into writing your actual novel. And for that you can use the structure in the draft folder, which is taken from the Scrivener novel template without any changes.

Compiling the Snowflake Documents

One more thing. What if you want to compile your snowflake documents in order to export them, for example if you want to send them so someone to get feedback and maybe that person doesn’t own Scrivener.

If you take a look at the compiler by going to File – Compile… you see that I added a “Modern Snowflake” compile setting here. It’s named that way because it’s based on the “Modern” compile setting that comes as standard with the novel template, but I had to change it slightly so it would fit the requirement of just exporting those snowflake steps.

So, what you do is, you choose this “Modern Snowflake” setting and on the right side of the compiler window you select the “Snowflake Steps” collection. I put all these documents in a collection because this makes compiling a lot easier.

Now you just compile this, and what you end up with is a pdf that follows more or less the “Modern” design from the novel template.

If you don’t like that design you can also choose the “Default” compile setting. This will look a little bit different in terms of fonts and also it won’t start a new page for each of the snowflake steps, but rather just create one continuous document in case you prefer that.

Alright, that’s it, I hope this template is useful for you and helps you writing great stories and get all those great ideas that you have inside of you out so that many people can read and enjoy your stories.

Happy writing everybody!