Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Can Special Software Help You Write?

Only your determination can get plots and characters on paper. However, software geared to writers may help you organize a book and keep track of who did what to whom.

I use Microsoft Word for all my writing. I don’t usually outline a book, but I will have pages of notes. Generally I make notes by hand and type them. As I type, key points seem to take clearer shape. Even so, there are always ideas that seep out before I write them. Writing software won't help with that, but it could make you more organized, in general.

Several writers I know use Scrivener and like it, especially some of the visual presentations of their work. You can also have the software read your book back to you. Some use it to format their books for online publication. I'm happy with Word for that.

    Amazon has a book on creating an ebook with Scrivener. Another book says it is the ultimate guide for the software. A website called Literature and Latte has a straightforward presentation of the software’s capabilities and (as I write this) a link to a 30-dayfree trial.
    Since I don’t use it, I can’t recommend Scrivener, but the books mentioned give you a way to explore. I bought one of them and found it very helpful in understanding the software.  

To provide more information as I prepared a class, I looked for sites that compare writing software. I found such a comparison on a Writer's Digest page. So many choices! While Scrivener is not on the list, it’s mentioned elsewhere on the site.

As one who wrote reports for years, I liked the organizing components almost better for nonfiction than fiction.

I may try one of these products, but first I need to finish a book. My sense is that introducing new software in the middle of the project probably would just frustrate me.

If you decide to use Scrivener (or any other program), please let me know what you think.
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  1. This blog contains advanced info of writing services which is really going to help.Thanks for sharing with us.
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  2. Tyler - sorry I did not notice your comments until now. I'm glad you find the blog helpful. I also have a free course entitled "Thinking Through Self-Publishing. I don't know if it would interest an essay writer, but you are welcome to check it out. What part of Ireland? Much of my family came from Aghadowey near Colerains.

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  4. I use Scrivener. I'm a software nerd, so using the program to do my writing is great for me. It lays everything out so well - scenes, chapters, characters. After pushing a few buttons, I can generate an official-looking manuscript, too, which is exciting.

    1. How well does it format the manuscript to load to Kindle or BN? I've wondered about switching to something other than Word to do this.

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