I often try to explain to other writers how Scrivener helps me be a better writer, but honestly it’s hard to know where to start.
I’m not getting anything for recommending Scrivener. But I loved using it from the first moment I downloaded it, and I want to share how brilliant it is!
Scrivener has so many features, even after using it for two years I still haven’t explored them all. I still need to use my guide book to lead me through activities that I’ve either not tried yet or haven’t done for some time.
Yes it can be a beast, anything full featured is. But it’s also a beast that’s easily tamed. It’s actually easy to use some clever stuff, and ignore the rest.
The most important elements for me
- The ability to keep scenes in specific chunks, and move them around easily.
- The ability to write scene and chapter synopsis on cards.
- The outline feature that lets you look at the whole story at a glance (especially if you’ve written short synopsis on cards).
In addition, you can work distraction free if you want to, or have multiple links and folders containing your research open at the same time (that’s the way I like to do things). You can store all of your research within Scrivner. Text, images, links, videos… Everything and anything that you’re using to write the story.
Plus it’s so easy to compile and export your completed file to many different formats, including e-book, Moby, PDF and print, that even I can do it. The compile functionality looks a bit scary at first, but if I can use it… Trust me anyone can!
I can’t imagine using anything other than Scrivener for writing now.
How to make a start using Scrivener to project manage your next writing project
If you are thinking about Scrivener I recommend that you download the free trial, create a project for your work and start with writing scenes and short synopsis. When you need to stop your train of thought, create a comment in the text to remind yourself what you need. When you’ve finished the scene (or your writing session) you can pull in some research or images or whatever to resolve your questions and store the material in the project … so you’ve got everything together. Your entire writing project connected in one place.
If you have alternative methods for managing your writing projects. The drafts and revisions, and all the research etc associated with them, I’d love to hear about it!