Tools of the trade

One of the things about writing a longer piece of fiction – say a novel – is that the actual organisation of stuff on your computer can be a little complex. Notes, drafts, synopses and outlines. Reference material, more notes, some doodles. Personally, I’m far too fond of lists to be strictly healthy, there so when it comes to filing and folder hierarchy on my computer, it’s serious business. All of which takes time, cheap nba jerseys which is fine when it is fun, but when that time could be better used, y’know, writing the actual story, then it’s a real drag. Especially when you’re dealing with several different apps – maybe a simple text editor for notes, a word proc for the actual text, etc. And then you divide it all up by cheap jerseys chapter or section. You see my point.

Then quite by chance, while browsing a few regular sites one morning, I discovered SF writer wholesale mlb jerseys and fellow blogger Tobias Buckell talking about Scrivener. Scrivener is, quite simply, the perfect writing application. Check out Tobias’s site for screenshots and more detail (then download Scrivener and try it for yourself), but essentially Scrivener takes all your writing files and orders them into E a single coherent project. Notes and outlines and references are all instantly available wholesale nfl jerseys as you work on family. a piece of text, and subdivision into chapters and scenes is, honestly, a joy to behold. Gone is my soon! confusing mass of nested folders. Now I just have one single Scrivener project. Genius!

It’s amazing it’s taken so long Soul for such an app to be developed, but hell am I glad it has!

  • Ooh, you had me all interested there until I followed the link and realised it was a Mac-only app! 🙂 According to the info provided, the closest thing for Windows is something called Page Four which I may try out soon.

    For my (non-fiction) book, I have a steadily growing number of folders and files containing notes, accumulated research material and previous versions. I did have each chapter in its owen separate doc, but I found that too difficult to keep juggling, so I’ve recently simplified things down to just two current docs: one containing the entire completed sections of manuscript, and the other with the skeleton structure of what’s still to be written.

  • Adam Christopher

    Hi Paul!

    Yes Mac-only, but looking at the screenshots for Page Four it looks very similar to Scrivener, but for Windows users.

    Definitely try it out – the ability to view reference materials of nearly any format in a window as you type seems invaluable when writing a non-fiction work like yours. For fiction, breaking chapters right down to individual scenes is very useful as they can be reordered or have new scenes spliced between with no effort required. Being able to do that without creating ten million individual files is just a dream!

    It looks like Page Four can do all that too.

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  • Adam Christopher

    Hi Paul!

    Yes Mac-only, but looking at the screenshots for Page Four it looks very similar to Scrivener, but for Windows users.

    Definitely try it out – the ability to view reference materials of nearly any format in a window as you type seems invaluable when writing a non-fiction work like yours. For fiction, breaking chapters right down to individual scenes is very useful as they can be reordered or have new scenes spliced between with no effort required. Being able to do that without creating ten million individual files is just a dream!

    It looks like Page Four can do all that too.