I have a folder hardcoded in variable:

(defvar folder-start-mine "/path/to/start/folder/")

Then I want to interactively define new non-existing subfolder name:

(defun my-new-defun (sel-subdir)  
     (interactive "GNew folder: " folder-start-mine)
     (mkdir sel-subdir)
     ... do some stuff with sel-subdir ...

The file navigator in minibuffer starts in home folder and I want it to start in folder-start-mine.

  • Do you intend for folder-start-mine to be the default value for sel-subdir, or do you want the value of sel-subdir to be a directory located inside/relative to folder-start-mine? You mention "It starts in the home folder", but I don't know what you're referring to?
    – Tyler
    Jul 6, 2018 at 15:15
  • The file navigator in minibuffer starts in ~/. I want it to start in /path/to/start/folder/. I want for sel-subdir to be a path to the new subfolder (this works). Jul 6, 2018 at 16:28

1 Answer 1


The built-in support for prompting a user for a directory name, via the G flag as you have used, does not support setting the default directory. You can do this explicitly with a lisp expression instead of the usual interactive codes.

(defvar folder-start-mine "/path/to/start/folder/")

(defun my-new-defun (sel-subdir)  
   (list (read-directory-name "New Folder: " folder-start-mine)))
  (mkdir sel-subdir))

This will prompt the user for a directory name, starting from the value of folder-start-mine, and then use that as the value of the variable sel-subdir.

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