Link Devonthink Documents to Scrivener

I have been working on a way to link Devonthink documents to Scrivener. There are several ways to achieve a result and for my purposes, it is important to retain a link back to the original document in Devonthink. These original documents in Devonthink are my notes and summaries from journal articles for my research.

1. The first step is to create an empty folder in Scrivener. I place this folder in the Research section of Scrivener (I use the APA paper template, though it becomes highly modified as I work).

New folder in Scrivener

New folder in Scrivener

2. Next, I select the folder from Devonthink I want to import and link the note from. I copy the title of this folder to the new folder created in Scrivener.

Select folder in Devonthink. Copy the title

Select folder in Devonthink. Copy the title.

Rename new Scrivener Folder

Rename new Scrivener Folder

3. Next, I go to the Document references panel in Scrivener and create a new external reference. I copy the folder name into the title of this reference.

Create External Reference

Create External Reference

Naming the External Reference

Naming the External Reference

4. Go back into Devonthink and copy the item link of the original folder.

Copy Devonthink item link

Copy Devonthink item link

5. Paste the item link from Devonthink into external reference in Scrivener. This creates a link to the original folder from Devonthink.

Copy link into external reference in Scrivener

Copy link into external reference in Scrivener

6. Go back to Devonthink and select all the documents from within the folder that you want to link and import into Scrivener.

Select documents in Devonthink folder

Select documents in Devonthink folder

7. Drag these items into Scrivener external document link section.

Drag and drop documents into Scrivener external link location

Drag and drop documents into Scrivener external link location

8. Drag all the documents now located in the external references location to the new folder created in Scrivener. This copies the contents of these documents into the binder and creates new documents from each file in Scrivener.

Drag external references into Scrivener folder

Drag external references into Scrivener folder

New binder documents are created in Scrivener

New binder documents are created in Scrivener

There are other ways to achieve the same thing such as importing files into Scrivener but this means needing to export all the documents and folders from Devonthink first. Copying the item link from Devonthink into Scrivener only provides a link and not the actual contents of the document, so that is why I prefer this method as it copies the document contents into Scrivener as well as providing a link back to the original folder and documents within Devonthink.

The copy item link from Devonthink produces a relative link which is useful if you more the file or folder within Devonthink. Draging the documents into Scrivener from Devonthink provides an absolute link. If you more the document, then you lose the link. However, I have captured the original contents of the files which are what I will edit and work on as I add them to my research writing. At this stage (early in my studies) I don’t think this will be a problem with the seemingly one-way mode from Devonthink to Scrivener. Linking back into Devonthink with new writing or ideas may need a different approach.

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