Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Writing Software

Hello friends!

I feel like I'm always apologizing for not being here more often. It's true that I struggle with wondering if anyone is interested in my random blathering about the state of my writing or if, like me, you wish I'd just get on with it :)

Well, in the interest of taking advantage of a good patch of health (my own and various relations), I'm rewriting and writing. The first is my original and long suffering duo of books concerning my modern billionaire/reincarnated goddess, Raven LeFevre. The second is a stand alone novel that's actually set, in part, in the world of those books (nineteenth century) involving a school mate of one of the central characters who finds himself in a somewhat similar predicament--falling in love with a woman considered "other." The third is as close to a contemporary murder mystery as I'll get since it's set in a nebulous time that might be the sixties or it could be the eighties, not sure.

You see the problem. I need HELP. Anyway, I'm test driving some new writing software in the hopes of being able to better organize my pages. I have Scrivener but sometimes it feels much more complicated and that tends to overwhelm me. On Facebook another writer, who also has Scrivener, mentioned how much easier and more streamline the software Storyist is. I've downloaded the free trial and so far so good. But I'm wondering if there's anyone else who's switched or has an opinion one way or another about either program.

Any and all thoughts are appreciated.


John Kelly said...

I started with Storyist and loved it. I soon found that I outgrew it and went to Scrivener, although I still use Storyist on my iPad and iPhone as I can directly edit a .scrv file with no fuss or bother.

Pamala Knight said...

The option of using the software on my iPad is alluring to me too, John. I've got Evernote currently on phone and iPad and will use that to make notes and then transfer them but I probably need to just buckle down and learn Scrivener. Then maybe I won't be so frustrated at what I know I should be able to do and what I actually know how to do.

Thanks for commenting and good luck with your writing :)

John Kelly said...

Another tip: there are times when I need more screen real estate on my MacBook. There is an app called Duet that you can run on the Mac and on the iPad which will give you a second screen running off of the Mac. Very cool, just like being in the NORAD Command Center!

Pamala Knight said...

Hello again John! So, can you give more details on the whys of needing more space on your MacBook and what you use it for? Is it like the split screen editing feature on Scrivener, which I do like. Or is it a feature like Parallels (we installed that so we could run Windows business software on my husband's iMac). This sounds really intriguing.

I'm actually digging out my notes from the last Scrivener workshop I took and also Gwen Hernandez's book SCRIVENER FOR DUMMIES. Just to give myself a refresher and to make sure that I'm not trying to make the software adhere to my way of thinking instead of the way it actually works. Detrimental for all, in this case.

Thanks again for your comment.

John Kelly said...

I forgot to mention that Duet Display will also work on PC - iPad combo.

Good luck

John Kelly said...

Re: Displays - Well, my wife said I've taken something that previously needed only some sheets of paper and a pen and turned it into needing three computers (I use my iPhone for a timer). The reason I sometimes need two displays is I use Save the Cat software and can use both Save the Cat and Scrivener on separate screens running on the MacBook.

Re: Scrivener - Here's the thing, it actually can adhere to your thinking and the way you work. You can set it up anyway you want. I set up my folders like this: Act 1, Act 2a, Act 2b, Act 2. I can then add scenes in according to my Beat Sheet, adding chapters later.

You can track scene by "To Do", "First Draft", "Done" or whatever labels you want. You can color code by POV or anything else you may want. The whole program seems infinitely configurable. This seems to be THE tool for writers whether you're a pantser or plotter.

If you get Storyist, get it for the iPad. It's like a simplified version of Scrivener and can do a lot of the same things. You will also, then, be able to use Storyist later to edit Scrivener files on the iPad or iPhone.