Wednesday, December 9, 2009

yWriter

A month or so ago I fell in love with a lovely little writing program called Scrivener . Unfortunately, it is only available for use on Macs and I have a PC. Now, my first computer that I bought with my very own money was an Apple, and I loved it. However, when I married my dear husband we switched back to the PC life. I'm not going to get into the whole Mac vs. PC discussion here because I can see positive things about both (that is just my nature!), but I've been pining over this program. So I have looked at Mac laptops for a month trying to convince myself that I could justify the cost of one so I could use Scrivener to become a famous author. *sigh*

I did not quite succeed. Cool tools will not write my book for me or make it entertaining enough to make me famous. The work will be all mine to do regardless of how pretty a program I run on my computer. However, I keep losing my old style index cards, which means I can't keep track of the secrets that I have already revealed, who knows about it and when did I do that? That may not make sense, but I know my story inside out and I have to know where the characters learned certain things in order to keep the story flowing properly. I've also moved things around so many times in my document that it is very easy for me to get lost in its 200+ pages. I liked using the index cards to keep track of the scenes and goals because I could move them around to find the best places for them in my story. Now, back to the cool programs...

Scrivener has this visual cork board that works in the same way as my index cards. Each card corresponds to a chapter or scene in the book, and here is the cool part...when you move the cards around on the board, it moves the scene in your book for you! No more cut and paste and oops, now that scene is in their twice! Just typing about it makes me excited. Anyway, I do need a laptop, or at least I want one desperately, but I can afford a PC long before a Mac. So, in an effort to let go of my desire for the lovely visually pleasing Scrivener---I downloaded the free yWriter program--My heart was not fully behind this little experiment, but I knew that I needed to get better organized to finish the final revisions of Sendek, and that is where my heart is right now. So, I've been playing with this program and plugging in the scenes of my book. It does all the same things that Scrivener does, but it is the stripped down all business version...and I like it. It keeps track of who is in each scene, timelines, POVs, word counts, whether it is action or reaction scenes, goal for the section, location, items of importance in the scene, etc. I can still move things around and I think I can print the whole book from here as well. Still need to play with that.

Of course I've also been a wreck wondering if I've just set my computer up to be hacked or my story stolen. Yes, the last may seem like a silly worry, but I have years invested in this story and it means a lot to me. There were lots of good reviews online for the program, but how do I know if those reviews are legit? The only review from a source I recognized can be found at PCmag-- Click Here .

I'll keep you posted!

1 comment:

David said...

Thank you for your post Charity! Glad that you enjoyed using Scrivener. Not exactly an imminent release, but you can join our Scrivener for Windows newsletter: http://www.literatureandlatte.com/about.html#windows.

I hope that you get your story finished to your satisfaction.

All the best,
David (Scrivener team - along with Keith!)