Scrivener is my new best friend.
Now, I’ve only been using it for two days so I haven’t had time to really go through everything and experience any troubles (the only trouble I’m having is changing the standard font color from red to black, because I’m so computer oriented). It’s got some mixed reviews, but I have discovered I love the set up of it.
It breaks down bigger texts (novels, scripts, longer school papers, etc.) into smaller chunks. I’ll show you a picture.
I’ve divided each chapter into a note on my cork board. Now, you readers know I only have 14 chapters written, 15 if you count the rewrite of chapter 1 that I posted yesterday. But on here I have 29 chapters. That’s because it wanted me to create space for the chapters by writing in a little blurb about what happens in each break, and I got really excited and realized that while I had planned out everything that happens, I had no idea what I wanted to happen in the on coming chapters. So I got really busy and I’ve planned out the next 15 chapters (and I’m not done. I’m going to keep planning until the whole book is planned out). Isn’t that so cool? It creates a nice little space for everything, so that way when I want to sit down and write, I know exactly what I want to write next because it’s all there. No more having three Word docs open and my notes open on the computer so I can kind of know what the heck is going on and I can kind of figure out what I want to happen next. It’s all right here.
Now, you’ll notice that there are different colors on the notes. That’s because each chapter has a different status and label.
Some of my chapters are already written (chapter 1-14 and the rewrite). They are all marked green for chapter (as opposed to scene or notes, or any of the other options). The later chapters are marked in orange, which as you can see in this picture is Notes. There are also status labels, so chapters 1-14 are all labeled First Draft, and the rewrite is labeled Revised Draft. My unwritten chapters are all labeled To Do because I haven’t done them yet.
Anyway, I love Scrivener because it forced me to focus on my writing. There’s a full screen mode for writing, so you can hopefully ignore all those pesky computer distractions (curse you Pinterest!), there’s character sketch pages and setting sketch pages so all of your information can be in one place. You can even link research into Scrivener so that you don’t have to get distracted by going onto the web and seeing other browser pages open, or risk losing the link. Everything you need to write gets compiled right here into Scrivener. There’s even a word goal count!
So now I can see how far I am into writing Rose. Now, that also includes the extra 1,598 words from the rewrite chapter, but I’m getting there. Isn’t this so cool?! I’ve planned out exactly how the entire rest of the book is going to go in the two days since I downloaded Scrivener. Now, I’m on the free trial version because I’m a poor newlywed and Husband of Mine is a poor, starving college student. It’s normally $40-$45, but I think it’s totally worth it, and when I get my next paycheck I’m gonna make sure that it goes toward this.
There are discounts available for it. NaNoWriMo (If you haven’t heard of NaNoWriMo then you’re silly, it stands for National Novel Writing Month which is November) offers discounts depending on the goals you hit. Signing up gets you a discount, but actually completing the 50,000 words gets you a bigger discount. I don’t think I could do NaNoWriMo without Scrivener though because of how well it forces you to plan out everything and I waste half my time just trying to figure out what to write next (well now I don’t have to!) because I’m not a very detailed planner. There’s also a student discount, which my husband is going to figure out for me.
I highly recommend downloading the 30 day trial version
to see how it works for you, because it is definitely not for everyone. There’s also a very helpful video tutorial
that teaches you the basics of using it, because I’m probably more confusing than helpful. I just think it’s really cool, and since I had never heard of it until this week, I thought I’d spread the news so more aspiring writers can be aware of how helpful this is.
Thanks for listening to me ramble!