Sep 21, 2015

Playing With Scrivener

I'm in the process of moving my book project, working title Shadowlands, into Scrivener, and I thought I'd tell you a bit about the program. Scrivener has many templates built in, but you can also make your own, so that's what I did. It's mostly based on the one K. M. Weiland posted here, but you can put in anything you want, which is very nice. I like having the story structure skeleton there to guide me. I'm hoping that if I hit those scenes I can do whatever I want with the rest, and the story will still hold together. The text on that screenshot is from an old  Terribleminds challenge, in case you're wondering, just because I didn't want to post too many spoilers.

The part about this that I love is the Inspector. I can tag the scenes to the POV character, and later I can view all of the scenes tagged "Reese," for example. It should make it much easier to see if his story arc is working properly. This would be a total pain to do on Word.

Another thing I like is that I can have my research right there in the program, and there's a "quick look" thing where the research document opens in a small window that floats on top of the manuscript page. And I can save videos or images in there in as well as text. Pretty cool, right?    

This is the other great part: the cork board view. You can get an idea of the scenes in one quick look, and you can move them around however you like. If you move the cursor on one of the cards, it shows you the first sentence of the scene in question, and it even generates a synopsis if you want. I prefer to type my own stuff, though. Didn't do that yet because of spoilers. Oh, and the Outline card isn't supposed to be in there, it goes at the top, but as you can drag these around however you want I  moved it there by accident. Whoops.

People talk about Scrivener having a steep learning curve, but I just don't see it. I did the tutorial, which did take a few hours to complete, but I feel I can use the features I need pretty well just based on that.

So, we'll see. I don't think I'll bother using this for short stories, but for a novel this looks like a good fit. The finished manuscript needs to be moved to Word for the final edits, but the program does that for you, so no biggie.

If you want to check it out, here's a link to the site:   
At forty-five bucks it's a pretty good deal for something this useful.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hello, stranger. What's on your mind?