Free Scrivener Templates: Fiction and Nonfiction

Scrivener is a fantastic tool for writers and authors. You can collect research, organize, write, edit, and format your book all in one place. It’s no wonder why it’s the preferred program for all kinds of writers.

One of the big perks of using Scrivener is that it comes with templates for different writing formats. It doesn’t matter if you write fiction, nonfiction, essays, or blog posts—using templates will make your life easier.

While the software comes with a set of awesome templates already built-in, you can also download templates from third-party sources. You can even create your own templates to use.

In this article, I’m going to show you how to use templates, where to find them, and how to make them.

In this article, you will learn:
  1. What Scrivener templates are
  2. Where to find templates
  3. How to use templates in Scrivener
  4. How to create your own templates

What is a Scrivener Template?

A Scrivener template is a collection of presets for your writing project. You can save these presets for future books so that you don’t have to adjust the file settings every time you start something new.

For example, if you’re writing a series of novels and want to keep the same fonts, print size, chapter headings, and front and back matter, a template will save these settings for you.

And templates aren’t just for fiction writers. Even if you write blog posts, articles, or nonfiction books, using a template will save you time and energy. If you write a lot of similarly structured content, Scrivener templates will become your new best friend.

To learn more about Scrivener templates and how they work, watch this 4-minute video from Literature and Latte.

Where to Find Scrivener Templates

You can find Scrivener templates in a variety of places, including right in the software itself. While the default templates are pretty basic, they’re a great way to get started. However, if you find yourself wishing for a robust template with more specific settings, you can download one from a third-party source. (See the sections below.)

You can find a Scrivener template for almost every type of writing project, whether it’s fiction, nonfiction, blogging, or academic papers.

As you explore the options, you’ll notice that most of the websites in the tables below have a simple list with links to download templates. Only rarely will you be able to preview the template before downloading it. Because of this, you might have to download and experiment with a few different templates before finding one that meets your needs.

Remember, if a template is almost perfect but needs a few tweaks, you can always modify it for your project. (See the section titled How to Make Changes to a Template.)

With that in mind, it’s time to jump into the wonderful world of Scrivener templates.

List of Free Fiction Templates for Scrivener

If you’re writing novels, short stories, novellas, anthologies, or other forms of fiction, these templates are for writers like you. Some of them will help you set up your novel and plan it out, while others are great for stylizing your text and headings.

Use the table below to explore the fiction template options. You’ll find everything from basic novels to story plotting and script writing templates.

Name of TemplateType of WritingCheck It Out
Story Structure TemplatePlotting and Outlining
Check It Out
Seven Point Plot StructurePlotting and Outlining
Check It Out
Check It Out
Save the Cat TemplateShort Stories
Check It Out
Snowflake MethodNovel Writing
Check It Out
World-building LeviathanNovel Writing
Check It Out
No Nonsense Novel TemplateNovel Writing
Check It Out
30-Chapter NovelNovel Writing
Check It Out
4-Part NovelNovel Writing
Check It Out
Story Grid TemplateNovel Writing
Check It Out
Murder Mystery TemplateMystery Novels
Check It Out
Romance TemplateRomance Novels
Check It Out

List of Free Nonfiction Templates for Scrivener:

Nonfiction writers, these templates will help you organize your information into a book, blog, or paper that flows seamlessly from one section to the next. Whether you write essays, case studies, or memoirs, these templates will save you time and energy so you can focus on what you do best: write!

Use the table below to explore nonfiction templates. You’ll find a wide variety of options to help you with your next project.

Name of TemplateType of WritingCheck It Out
Case Study TemplateCase Studies
Check It Out
Blogging (Single Blog)Blogging
Check It Out
Multi-blog TemplateBlogging
Check It Out
White Paper TemplateWhite Papers
Check It Out
Case Study TemplateCase Studies
Check It Out
Ultimate Nonfiction Book Templates (multiple)Nonfiction Books (memoirs, self-help, etc.)
Check It Out

How to Install a Template in Scrivener:

Now that you know what a Scrivener template is and where to find them, you need to know how to install them in the software.

This section will show you how to use both Scrivener’s default templates and import third-party templates for use in your project. If you haven’t already, visit some of the websites listed above and download a template or two.

Now that you’ve done that, let’s get started.

How to Use Scrivener’s Default Templates:

If you’ve used Scrivener before, you should be familiar with their default templates. They are already installed and ready to go. You can find templates for projects like novels, short stories, radio scripts, cookbooks, and essays right inside the software. These templates are fantastic for beginners and anyone who wants to keep things simple.

Here’s how to find and use Scrivener’s built-in default templates:

  1. Open Scrivener and select “File,” then “New Project.”
  2. In the pop-up window, you’ll see a selection of templates. Choose the type of project you want to create and select the template that best describes your work.
A look at Scrivener's built-in default templates.
  1. Click “Create.”
  2. In your new project, click “Project” and “Meta-Data Settings.” If everything looks good, you’re all set.
    • If you aren’t sure what you should be looking for in this step, don’t worry. You can use these settings to add new label colors, statuses, and things like the title and author’s name.
screenshot pointing out the location of the Meta-data settings in Scrivener

How to Import a Third-Party Template:

If you need something more specific than what you can find in Scrivener’s default templates, you can download and import one from an external source. There are hundreds of templates out there, and chances are, several of them will be suitable for your project.

You might want to download a third-party template if you’re working on genre fiction, want help plotting your novel, or are writing a series of blog posts or essays. No matter your project, you can find a Scrivener template to organize your information and write your best book ever.

It’s important to note that while many third-party Scrivener templates are free, some charge a fee or require you to sign up for an email list before you download them.

Here’s how to import a third-party template into Scrivener:

  1. If you haven’t already, visit one of the websites listed in the tables above and select a template you’d like to try.
  2. Download the template.
    • If your template comes in a zipped folder, follow steps 3 & 4. Otherwise, proceed to step 5.
  3. If necessary, unzip the downloaded folder by right-clicking the folder and selecting “Extract All.”
Screenshot showing the Extract All button in Scrivener
  1. Follow the directions to save the unzipped folder on your computer.
  2. Open Scrivener and select “File,” then “New Project.”
  3. In the lower left-hand corner of the pop-up window, click “Options” and “Import Templates.”
Scrivener screenshot showing where to import templates
  1. Locate the .scrivtemplate file and click “Open.”
Where to find the Scrivener Template file.
  1. The template will now appear in the default options in Scrivener. Select it and click “Create.”
Screenshot showing where to create a project from a template

For this example, I imported a template called “30 Chapter Novel Format.” As you can see in the image below, the template already has the various plot points you’d typically find in a novel. There is also a spot to develop your characters, collect research, and organize your book’s front and back matter.

Example of what a project from a Scrivener template looks like.

Having this file already set up will save you quite a bit of time. Now you’re ready to start on the next task—the complicated process of planning and writing your novel!

How to Make Your Own Scrivener Template:

Now you know how useful Scrivener templates are and how to install them. But if you can’t find a template that meets your needs, you can create your own. You might also want to make one if you have several projects that all use a similar layout (like a book series).

In this section, I will show you how to set up a Scrivener file and save it as a template. Doing this will allow you to keep your setup and presets consistent across several projects.

You don’t need any special skills to make a Scrivener template. If you know how to use the software, then you can make a template. The process is straightforward, but here are a few things you should remember before you create a template:

  • Start with a blank Scrivener project file.
  • As you build your template, leave the content blank. (For example, create and label new text blocks and folders, but don’t include anything in them.)
  • Check the Meta-Data (click “Project,” then “Meta-Data Settings”) to make sure it looks right. Make any necessary adjustments.

With those things in mind, here’s how to create your own Scrivener template.

  1. Open a blank Scrivener project file by clicking “File” and “New Project” then choosing the blank file option.
  2. You will have an almost empty project file. Use the icons to customize the following items:
    • Binder folders
    • Documents
    • Labels
    • Status presets
    • Compile presets
    • Fonts
    • Headings
    • Front and back matter
    • Corkboards, icons, and color-coding
Scrivener icons to create your own template.
  1. Add character sheets, story structure, and references as needed.
  2. When you’re satisfied with your file, select “File,” then “Save as Template.”
  3. In the template information box, add the title, category, description, and icon.
  4. Click “OK.”

Congratulations! Now you have a brand new template, and you can use it as many times as you want for any of your upcoming projects.

How to Make Changes to a Template:

We’ve talked about how to find templates and import them to Scrivener. We’ve even discussed how to make your own custom templates. But what if you want to make changes to an existing template or one that you found on the web?

Sometimes you need just a few adjustments to make a template perfect. Maybe you need to change the front matter or change some icons on a template you imported. Whatever modifications you need to make, don’t sweat. It’s a simple and easy process.

Here’s how you do it.

  1. Open the template in Scrivener.
  2. Add and delete items as needed.
  3. Adjust icons, color coding, settings, fonts, and folders.'
Scrivener screenshot showing where to adjust the labels, icons, and more.
  1. Select “File,” then “Save as Template.”
  2. Fill out the template information box.
  3. Click “OK.”

Now you have a fully customized template. You can use it for all of your future projects without having to adjust the settings each time.

How to Delete a Template:

At some point, you might find yourself overwhelmed with template options. If you want to remove a template and simplify things, it’s easy to do.

While you can’t delete any of the default templates, you can remove custom ones that you’ve imported, created, modified, or duplicated. Here’s how you do it in just a few steps:

  1. Click “File,” then “New Project” to open the template window.
  2. Select the template you want to delete.
  3. Click “Options,” then “Delete Selected Template.”
Where to delete a template in Scrivener.


Scrivener is an excellent tool for writers and authors, and using a template will improve your experience with the software even more. Take a look through the websites I mentioned in the article and see if you can find a template to use on your next project. It will save you from spending time setting up your document and, in some cases, will even help you plot and plan your novel.

And remember, if you can’t find a template for the type of work you do, you can always make your own.

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2 thoughts on “Free Scrivener Templates: Fiction and Nonfiction

  1. Venessa G.

    Just FYI – not all the templates listed are free. Ex: The multiple non-fic (last on the list) are $10.

    1. Dave Chesson

      Ah, sounds good. Thanks

Comments are closed.