i'm trying to get the files for Rivers, for most rivers i search for them in the Wizard using name=example and waterway=example and this works fine. For many rivers and canals overpass doesnt seem to be able to find the features and returns as map is left intentionally blank. I tried to use the selection box but then can't open in in QGIS all i need is the river does any one know of any way to get just the river file?
You might find it useful to go to OpenStreetmap and zoom to your area of interest, then use the query tool (the Question Mark icon). You don't need to be logged in to use this.
Next, click on or near the water feature you want to examine - a list of candidates will appear on a panel in the left.
You should hopefully be able to find the feature, and click on the link - this should show how the feature has been tagged.
In most cases, rivers should be tagged 'waterway', but it's possible some may have been tagged with something else, like 'natural'
Also - I'm assuming you're using QuickOSM plugin, as you tagged this QGIS? If so, check the 'advanced' settings in query, and make sure you have all types of geometry selected. Some rivers are lines, but more complex rivers (wide rivers with islands for example) can be relations or multipolygons.
Note that if you leave the value blank, it matches any value for waterway - you don't have to search for canals and streams separately unless you want them in separate layers.
Not sure where you are, but if looking for data, one place in the USA is with the state department of roads. Here in Vermont, USA here I am, I find data for some of the work I'm doing here https://www.vtculverts.org/ I image that most every state in the USA has such and expect the same in other countries. The actual rivers and streams can be downloaded from the state Agency of Natural Resources.