(O_O) Oh, Scrivener…where have you been all my life?

In all seriousness, though, I LOVE Scrivener. Haven’t heard of it? Don’t know what Scrivener is? Well, I’ll just have to educate you, then! Scrivener is an extremely powerful drafting software for writers, screenwriters, and the like. It is like having all your writing, notes, drafts, and outlines in ONE place. No more flipping around between programs in order to keep track of all your draft pieces or notes. Scrivener keeps everything in one place for you. Then, when you’re ready and done and would like to send off your manuscript to a publisher or self-publish and get things ready for formatting, you can compile everything into one file and export it to your word processor of choice. 🙂

FIRST THOUGHTS

Scrivener allows you a 30 day free-trial, which I feel is extremely generous. Granted, the software isn’t expensive (only $40.00), but it is quite the beast and it may not be for you. I loved getting to do their INSANELY in depth tutorial and getting a feel for the software. I am not in love with the user interface (aesthetically), but practically speaking, it is A DREAM COME TRUE for a scattered first-drafter like me. The aesthetic bit is easily solved by going into Scrivener’s really cool “Full Screen” mode which allows you to draft without distractions. SO COOL. Here’s a shot of their full-screen mode:

Neat, huh? You can also JUST have your manuscript up without any other windows at all, too.

SCRIVENER AND THE FIRST DRAFT OF MY NEW NOVEL

So, I’ll be honest, folks. Part of the reason I took such a long writing break was because I had made a HOT MESS of my draft for my third Tale from Niflheim. I mean, a big ol’ MESS. It was really distracting and upsetting and to be frank, at the time I didn’t know how to fix it. When I started to get some wind in my sails and get excited about writing and being an author again, I dove in, but still couldn’t quite make sense of the giant quagmire of rewrites and rewrites upon rewrites I had created.

Enter my lovely Philosopher who said to me a few nights ago, “Hey, have you heard about Scrivener?”

“In fact, I have, but I’ve never tried it,” I answered.

“You might want to try it!”

So, I did. And…I must say, Scrivener is like magic, fireworks, and a great cup of tea all in one. I love how easy it is to keep track of changes and how great their text process is. You can break up the manuscript into teeny pieces (which I did). You can great an outline of your entire novel (which I did). You can keep track of your research notes in a binder connected to your draft. You can create progress goals for yourself for daily wordcounts and final wordcounts (which I did).

I’m in love, folks. I honestly don’t know that I can go back after this. I will still use Microsoft Word for my formatting (because I love to format), but as far as drafting goes…this will be it every time!

Download your free 30-Day trial of Scrivener here.

Anyone out there use Scrivener for your drafting? What do you love about it or not? I’d love to hear about your experiences!

My Initial Thoughts on Scrivener for Novelists
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  • C. Lynn Kamm

    Thanks for the info and link! I will definitely check it out. I write professionally 45 hours (+) a week in Word and sometimes I like to see a new interface for my own writing 🙂

    • Yeah, it is absolutely well worth checking out, for reals! I love it SO much! I am definitely hooked.

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