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Scenes and Chapters

You can't have a story without scenes. As a result, everything revolves around scenes in Hiveword. We'll get to that in a bit.

Chapters, on the other hand, are collections of scenes, even if the chapter is comprised of only one scene. Additionally, the particular scenes in a chapter usually have a logical reason for being grouped there even if that reason is only known to you as the writer. Hiveword takes the opinion that chapters are optional from the perspective of story organization.

So, if you only ever have one scene per chapter (in other words, you only deal with chapters) you'll want to use Hiveword scenes as your chapters. Just pretend that they are chapters and it will work as you expect. Because you can attach characters, setting, and such to scenes but not chapters, using Hiveword chapters for scenes will be fairly useless.

Creating a Scene

  • Click the list icon () next to the word "Scenes" in the story sidebar
  • Click the New button and select "Scene" to create a new scene in your story
  • Enter a name for your scene (Suggestion: Like characters, use a name that's just long enough so that you know what the scene is about.)
  • Click OK to create the scene
  • Note that the story component sidebar now indicates that there is one scene in the story. If you click "Scenes" the list of scenes will expand and you'll see the one you just created.

There are other ways to create scenes. If you are on a scene page already, the Actions dropdown menu allows you to insert a scene before or after the current scene as well as at the end of all scenes. If you are on a scene list view, you can click the stacked circles icon () next to a scene and choose to insert a new scene before or after the one you clicked on.

Attaching Components to the Scene

You can specify a scene's setting, POV, and attach characters, plotlines, and items to it. The secret to this is the scene's metadata sidebar which is on the right-hand side of a scene detail page. Hover over the thing you want to change (Characters, for example) and click the pencil icon that appears next to it. You will then get a popup that lets you select the things to attach. Obviously, you will need some of whatever it is you are trying to attach beforehand. So, if you want to add characters you'll need some characters already defined.

Viewing All Scenes

To view all scenes, click the list icon next to Scenes in the story sidebar. You'll be taken to the Scene Board view which is one of four scene list views. Other views are Details, Summaries, and Scenes by Plotline.

Details View

The details view lists all of the scenes in a table where each row is a scene. The columns show the characters, items, etc. in each scene.

Summary View

The summary view lists all of the scene in order, showing their name and summary. This view allows you to easily "read" your story in summary form.

Scenes By Plotline

The scenes by plotline view shows the scene/plotline matrix. The scenes are listed in a table where each row is a scene. There is one column for each plotline and if the plotline is in a scene, the scene's plotline cell will be checked. This view allows you to see where plotlines are referenced throughout your story. Thus, you can easily see how your plotlines weave through the story. Knowing this allows you to see, at a glance, where plotlines start, how often they are referenced, and when they end (or were inadvertently dropped!)

Scene Board

The Scene Board is intended for "high-altitude" organizing. The scenes are displayed on cards and initially show the scene names. You can choose what appears on the card via the Card Data dropdown menu. Your choices are:

  • Just titles
  • Summaries
  • Characters
  • Items
  • Plotlines
  • POV
  • Settings
  • Tags

Being able see other data points can make your organizing easier especially since you can seen many scenes on the screen at once. When combined with a filter you get an extra dimension for finding the intersection of data points in scenes for extra versatility. Additionally, if your story has chapters they will be displayed in this view, as well, and are sortable just like scenes. Finally, you can also insert and delete scenes and chapters directly in the Sceneboard view. You can do these things by clicking the circles icon and selecting the appropriate action from the popup menu.

Sorting Scenes

Use the Scene Board to sort scenes and chapters (see the previous section for more information). To sort, simply drag and drop a card in the desired position.

Deleting Scenes

You can delete a scene like any other story component. Simply click the Delete button on the scene detail page. On scene list views, you can click the scene's stacked circles icon () and select Delete to delete the scene. In either case, the following happens:

  • The scene itself is deleted
  • Any scene tags are deleted
  • For Hiveword Plus, any custom field data is deleted
  • Things that were attached to the scene (e.g., characters, items, etc.) are detached but not deleted


Chapters work almost the same way as scenes except they cannot have things attached to them. In Hiveword, a chapter is essentially just a container for scenes.

In the various scene views mentioned above, chapters are shown as "mileposts" in the list of scenes. Any scene to the right (or bottom, depending on the view style) is considered to be in the chapter until another chapter comes along. It's also possible to have a chapter without any scenes in it. This can happen as you are building up your story.

You add, sort, and delete chapters in the same way as scenes. However, deleting a chapter does not delete the contained scenes.