Archive for March, 2011

You’ll Never! get better at writing!

Some years ago, I got my feelings hurt when critiquing someone’s work. It was sometime before 2002, and it still stays on my mind. I knew it when I wrote it that my observation wouldn’t be taken very well. I could tell immediately because of the how this person wrote his story.

I’ve been a member of Critters for some time (I joined in 2000), and it has shown me A LOT about writing. In order to learn to write, a professor once told me, you need to read. And having to do a critique at least once a week at Critters definitely taught me a thing or two about improving my own writing. In just a year, I could immediately recognize: beginning writers, talented writers, boring writers, teeny-bopper writers, college writers, arrogant writers and everything in-between writers.

I don’t remember the author’s name, so please don’t ask me. Like I said, it was a very long time ago. But, this person had a story that I looked at and saw some potential in it. However, he had like 20 new words for the reader to digest. I mean, he had a new word for a type of food, introduced over five characters, new words for places and other items…and this was all with in the first five or so paragraphs.

So, I listed these words, and I told him that I could not complete reading his story. I couldn’t finish it. I also told him I had just came back from a creative session (or critiquing session) where they tell you how long you have to keep an agent and/or publisher’s attention if you want to submit your work. It’s called “The Hook”, which is only the first sentence. You just got ONE line to keep someone’s attention, and he had it. But then the story got so convoluted with so many new terms and descriptions that I just couldn’t keep track of what was going on.

I explained my reasons why and couldn’t continue reading his story, like I’ve done now, and told him that it wouldn’t keep anyone’s attention and that he needed to cut down on all the new words and introduce characters and places slowly throughout the story. That’s what a book is for–it’s not a short story–you can space things out and provide a good pace of explaining things.

Well, of course, he was pretty upset with me and told me so. He also went on with saying that if I had continued reading the story then blah, blah, blah, and I would have known, blah blah blah, and he hoped I didn’t critique EVERYONE’S story like a agent. And ended his words with a statement: At least you got your 200 word weekly critique requirement met. Or something to that effect.

You know, I was in a critique group where this one particular writer refused, supply refused, to put her story in paragraphs and use quotations. Also, in this critique group, it was required that someone else read your writing out loud to the rest of the group. When someone else reads your writing, you can hear the flow of it, and you can see if the reader is understanding the way you intended your story to be read. Well, she wanted to read her own work because no one else understood how to project and place emphasis where it needed to be. Well, with no quotes, no paragraph breaks, no writing format of any kind, how DID she expect people to read her work? Eventually, we had to tell her that she could not come back to the group.

As I said before, after reading Soooo many types of stories and writers, I can SEE this type of personality. I can see the arrogance. I can see that this person only wants to be praised and NEVER wants to be critiqued.

The guy with the 20+ new words? I shouldn’t have wasted my time. I could see that my critique was not going to go over well. But I just wanted to help by showing him where he went wrong; how he could improve his work. But, you know, I just wasn’t quite sure if I should sent it, but, you know, we’re in a critique group so… I mean, that’s what a critique group does. People critique.

After that incident, I just don’t bother. I read the first line, or few paragraphs, of a story and if I see the signs, I just go to the next story – something I can read without stopping ever-other-sentence and not be able to enjoy the reading. I just hope that those types of people go to the section that explains: “How many reviews should I expect, and when? What if I didn’t get many?“. That will tell them.

My first paper in college, I got a D-, and I think the Teacher Assistant (TA) was being nice when giving me that grade. But he said, in BIG RED INK: “You Can Not Write Like This In College!” Damn. That was hurtful. I mean, it REALLY hurt. I almost got kicked out of college because I couldn’t figure out the difference between “were” and “are” and “is”, and what a darn thesis was. On top of that, I was in a basic writing course that I couldn’t pass. It was called Subject A at the time. I think, that last course, I only passed because after the 3rd time I took it, the students left to take the course had English as their 2nd language. I mean, I was going to get kicked out because I couldn’t even pass a simple, basic, writing course!

I put in some hours to stay in college. I went to tutor after tutor after tutor on every term paper I wrote for my first and second year of college until I got it figured out. It was hard and tearful work! But I finally figured out the formula for what was acceptable for college and I figure out the difference between “were” and “are” and “is” because another professor told me: “If you want to know English grammar, learn a 2nd language.” So, I had to take a 2nd language course anyway, and sure enough, Spanish helped me. (I’m not bilingual now. You don’t use it; you lose it). I finally began to get B+ and A-. I even found out that I got better grades in my courses when term papers were the focus (in-class writing tests that also required memorization…I didn’t do so well, but I LOVED multiple choice!)

I recently joined the WritersBeat and I conciously put down a critique of someone’s story there. It was just re-emphasizing what someone else had said earlier. If the other person didn’t say something, I would have just avoided it and went to another story.

But you know what that author said? The author said:

“The point is duly noted and I shall learn from it.”

TAH-DAH!!!

Now, THAT’S a writer!!! And he’s only been writing for up to 1 year. And you know what? He’s going to get better at it!

You want to know how NOT to improve your writing? You want to know why you’ll Never! get better at writing? Check out J.A. Konrath’s blog: How Not to Write a Story It’s hilarious and pretty sad. I can HEAR the frustration in his voice with some of these people who submit their stories to people to read. And they expect people to like it?!

You’ll Never! get better at writing! You’re darn skippy! Keep singing in the shower.

Until Next time 🙂

P.S. This blog was my follow up on my comment I made at the end of I Like the Feel of Paperback. No eBook For me! The last part on How NOT to write Novel.

Template to format your MSWord Novel to Kindle

I’ve put together how my book was constructed for the Kindle. I used the preview in Kindle to make sure it looks okay.

NOTE: Want to watch an Instruction Video for the below that has a template? Just go to Deana Zhollis Writing Tools.

The first step for the html programming I found on Critique Circle. I’m not a member. I actually was looking for something else and found this nifty way of getting your MSWord ready for html. If you use the MSWord converter, it just creates a whole lot of garbage html stuff that you really don’t need. Thus, if I had known this neat and quick way to change my MSWord to html WITHOUT loosing my italics, I surely would have used it instead of copying and pasting each-and-every-chapter into my Dreamweaver (for FREE html software, try out Kompozer. I downloaded it and it works great!), and then I had to compare my MSWord document to the HTML to put the darn formats back in. Not fun. But this now saves me a lot of headaches.

I’ve edited Critique Circle’s instructions to make it more general.

STEP 1

You can convert bold, italics, underline and centered text in MS Word to html formatted text before copy/pasting your text into your html programming/code window. In this way, you will not loose your italics, for example, when you copy/paste. The below instruction explains how to do this with bold and then you can use the same steps for the other formats

To do that, open up MSWord document and then open your find-replace option (CTRL-H), and make sure you are working in a throwaway copy of your manuscript so that you don’t accidentally save over it.

In the find-replace dialog, make sure you have your focus in the “Find What” text box (just click it) and then click on the “More” button, at the bottom of the dialog. There is a “Format” drop-down button. Click that and select “Font”. Now, select “Font Style” and then “Bold” and click OK.

NOTE: There is an easier way. You can press CTRL-B to toggle bold, CTRL-i to toggle italics, CTRL-u to toggle underline and CTRL-e to toggle centered. Just remember to have your focus on the “Find what” box and use the “Clear formatting” or “No formatting” to clear out previous formatting before entering a new one (ex. it might say “Not Bold”, which is not the same as not searching for bold text. In this case you should hit CTRL-B again to clear the bold flag)

Under the “Find What” text box, you should now see “Format: Font: Bold”.

In the “Replace With” text box, enter [b]^&[/b] and click “Replace All”.

This will find every piece of Bold formatted text and encase it with [b] and [/b].

Do the same with italics, underline and center (that’s in the “paragraph” option group). In every case, make sure that the option you had before is no longer selected, so that only bold, italics or centered is shown below the “Find What” text box.

Even if you have text that is italics _and_ bold you use the same method.

Here are the codes you want to put into “Replace With”:

Bold: <strong>^&</strong>

Italics: <i>^&</i>

Underline: <u>^&</u>

Centered: <c>^&</c>

STEP 2:

This part includes the following supported html coding the Kindle needs in order to look properly in their viewer. It will include the following things:

<a name=”TOC”/> for Table of Contents right before your Table of Contents

<a name=”start”/> for Go To Beginning where you want people to go when they first open your book

<a name=”cover”/> for Go To Cover where it will display your beautiful picture/cover of your book

<mbp:pagebreak/> for Page Breaks, which I mentioned in an earlier post

I researched if I needed to put the cover (<a name=”cover”/>) in my book or not. I couldn’t find anywhere where people were leaning more to the “to do” or “not to do”, so I left the cover out in my Kindle version. I can always insert the picture later on if I want. I read somewhere that I could put the cover at the end of the book, so that’s where I put it in the example below.

It also includes:

  • Table of Content in HTML
  • A bullet list in HTML
  • Dropped Case in HTML (The first letter of a chapter enlarged or larger)
  • A Glossary
  • A Prologue
  • About the Author
  • And stuff to put before the story begins (ISBN Number, Dedication, Website etc)

So, here goes my code. Hope it’s helpful.

<head>

<meta http-equiv=”Content-Type” content=”text/html;charset=iso-8859-1″ />

<title>{Enter your Title of Book here}</title>

</head>

<body>

<center><h2>{Enter Prologue Title Here}</h2></center>

<br>

<p>{Start the prologue text here}</p>

<p>{And keep on typing it all up}</p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<br />

<p>This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is coincidental.</p>

<br>

<br>

ISBN 10: {Enter Number}<br>

ISBN 13: {Enter Number}<br>

<br>

{Title of Book here}<br>

Copyright {Date} by {Author Name}<br>

All rights reserved.<br>

Published by {Name here}<br>

http://www.{web address}<br>

<br>

Cover Design by {Name here}<br>

http://www.{web address}<br>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<br>

<br>

To my family and friends who ….

<hr/>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<hr />

<font size=”+4″>{Title of Book Here}</font>

<hr width=”10%” />

<font size=”+1″>by {Author Name Here}</font><br />

<hr />

<br />

</center>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center><h2><a name=”TOC”/></a>TABLE OF CONTENTS</h2></center>

<br>

<br>

<a href=”#Ch1″>Chapter 1 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch2″>Chapter 2 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch3″>Chapter 3 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<hr />

<a href=”#Glossary”><font size=”+2″>Glossary of Terms</font></a><br />

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<a name=”start”/></a><h2 id=”Ch1″>Chapter 1 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>E</b></font>lephant went for a swim on a cool day. Begin novel story and stuff here.</p>

<p>Last Line of the chapter is here.</p>

<p> <br />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Ch2″> Chapter 2 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>T</b></font>he sun went up and then down again.</p>

<p>Last Line of chapter and 1st part of book here.</p>

<p align=”center”><strong><em>The End</em></strong></p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Glossary”>Glossary of Terms</h2>

<p><strong>Magic:</strong> Used thooughout the entire Novel to make things sparkle and look pretty.<br />

Examples of certain techniques:

<ul>

<li>Song ability</li>

<li> Animal ability</li>

<li> Water ability</li>

</ul>

<p><strong>Poor:</strong> An individual in a state of despair and desperation.</p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 align=”center”>About the Author</h2>

<p> </p>

<p>Lori Jones is an instructor for elephant painting and dancing

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<h1>Other Books</h1>

Elephant? Where are you?<br>

<br>

<strong><font size=”3″>(Coming Soon…)</font></strong><br>

Elephant – Together at Last<br>

Mice and Elephant<br>

<br>

<br>

<strong><font size=”4″>The Tusk Series</font></strong><br>

<br>

Tusk – White and Shiny!<br>

<br>

</center>

<a name=”cover”/><img src=”http://www.zhollis.com/images/TheMadewebsite.jpg” alt=”TheMade” longdesc=”TheMade.htm”>

</body>

</html>

Below Code is for Multiple Books within a Novel. It also includes:

  • Table of Content in HTML
  • A bullet list in HTML
  • Dropped Case in HTML (The first letter of a chapter enlarged or larger)
  • A Glossary
  • A Prologue
  • Book I and Book II (Book II has the Chapter Numbers starting from 1 again)
  • About the Author
  • And stuff to put before the story begins (ISBN Number, Dedication, Website etc)

So, here goes my code. Hope it’s helpful.

<head>

<meta http-equiv=”Content-Type” content=”text/html;charset=iso-8859-1″ />

<title>{Enter your Title of Book here}</title>

</head>

<body>

<center><h2>{Enter Prologue Title Here}</h2></center>

<br>

<p>{Start the prologue text here}</p>

<p>{And keep on typing it all up}</p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<br />

<p>This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is coincidental.</p>

<br>

<br>

ISBN 10: {Enter Number}<br>

ISBN 13: {Enter Number}<br>

<br>

{Title of Book here}<br>

Copyright {Date} by {Author Name}<br>

All rights reserved.<br>

Published by {Name here}<br>

http://www.{web address}<br>

<br>

Cover Design by {Name here}<br>

http://www.{web address}<br>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<br>

<br>

To my family and friends who ….

<hr/>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<hr />

<font size=”+4″>{Title of Book Here}</font>

<hr width=”10%” />

<font size=”+1″>by {Author Name Here}</font><br />

<hr />

<br />

</center>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center><h2><a name=”TOC”/></a>TABLE OF CONTENTS</h2></center>

<br>

<br>

<p>BOOK I: </p>

<a href=”#Ch1″>Chapter 1 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch2″>Chapter 2 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch3″>Chapter 3 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<br>

<p>BOOK II: </p>

<a href=”#Ch1_1″>Chapter 1 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch1_2″>Chapter 2 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<a href=”#Ch1_3″>Chapter 3 {Name of Chapter}</a><br />

<br />

<a href=”#Glossary”><font size=”+2″>Glossary of Terms</font></a><br />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<hr />

<font size=”+4″>BOOK I</font>

<hr />

</center>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<a name=”start”/></a><h2 id=”Ch1″>Chapter 1 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>E</b></font>lephant went for a swim on a cool day. Begin novel story and stuff here.</p>

<p>Last Line of the chapter is here.</p>

<p> <br />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Ch2″> Chapter 2 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>T</b></font>he sun went up and then down again.</p>

<p>Last Line of chapter and 1st part of book here.</p>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<hr />

<font size=”+4″>BOOK II:</font>

<hr />

</center>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Ch1_1″>Chapter 1 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>S</b></font>arah found a wonderful shade next to the elephange</p>

<p>Last line of Chapter here.</p>

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Ch1_2″>Chapter 2 – {Name of Chapter here}</h2>

<br />

<p><font size=”+4″><b>W</b></font>ater fell down from the elephant into her eyes</p>

<p>Last line of Chapter here and last line of the entire book. Hurray! You’re finished! Good job!<br />

<br />

<br />

<p align=”center”><strong><em>The End</em></strong></p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 id=”Glossary”>Glossary of Terms</h2>

<p><strong>Magic:</strong> Used thooughout the entire Novel to make things sparkle and look pretty.<br />

Examples of certain techniques:

<ul>

<li>Song ability</li>

<li> Animal ability</li>

<li> Water ability</li>

</ul>

<p><strong>Poor:</strong> An individual in a state of despair and desperation.</p>

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<h2 align=”center”>About the Author</h2>

<p> </p>

<p>Lori Jones is an instructor for elephant painting and dancing

<hr />

<mbp:pagebreak />

<center>

<h1>Other Books</h1>

Elephant? Where are you?<br>

<br>

<strong><font size=”3″>(Coming Soon…)</font></strong><br>

Elephant – Together at Last<br>

Mice and Elephant<br>

<br>

<br>

<strong><font size=”4″>The Tusk Series</font></strong><br>

<br>

Tusk – White and Shiny!<br>

<br>

</center>

<a name=”cover”/><img src=”http://www.zhollis.com/images/TheMadewebsite.jpg” alt=”TheMade” longdesc=”TheMade.htm”>

</body>

</html>

Okay. So, that’s what I used for my three (3) books for formatting. I hope this helps you guys out there with formatting from MSWord to HTML a little easier.

Note: the image html would look more like:

<a name=”cover”/><img src=”[imagenamehere].jpg” alt=”[ImageNameHere]”>

To see what it will look like, click <<here>>

Until next time…

Smashwords…Here I am! And…here I go…to Researching Writing Software

I’ve took the time to reformat my books to Smashwords submission process. They require a Microsoft Word format using Bookmarks and Hyperlinks for the Table of Contents. So now I have four (4) versions of my book: 1) HTML format, 2) Kindle format, 3) PDF format and 4) Smashword format.

It’s taken months in between to figure out where I wanted to send my books and if I wanted to do the formatting for them and when to do all of it.

I’m hoping a standard format will come soon, because it’s been a pain to re-format my books to each, individual publisher’s requirements. Maybe the standard might be epub (something I just recently found out about a few weeks ago while researching on the web to find some kind of software that, with a push of a button, it would recreate my books to whatever format the publisher wanted).

ePub

What is ePub? Well, from what I found out, ePub is short for “electronic publication” and it’s a format that allows eReaders like Barnes & Nobles Nook and Sony Reader to read it. A list of devices that support the ePub format is at wikiMobileRead. What it is, is a creation of XML files (mostly XHTML) all zipped up together. It basically makes a file for Every-Single-Chapter of your book. Take a look at a picture of it at addictivetips.

I’ve looked occasionally at MobileRead.com to see what the programmers have to say about all these different “e” stuff, and that’s where I begin to hope for a STANDARD eBOOK FORMAT.

There was one particular forum that someone was asking for a software that produced multi-format ebooks. One person replied stating: “…I have to consult my notes each time I do my conversions, to keep the differences in format conversion processes straight. If I worked in large volumes, I could see it driving me crazy…

He went on to talking about keeping up with sooo many formats:

…my biggest concern would be how well this tool could adapt to changing format standards (or how they were used by the end-user) over time. And with multiple formats to be concerned about, any little change in one of a half-dozen formats (or how an e-reader reads them) could require major rewriting of the tool.

A suggestion: Another way to look at this might be from the other end of the conversion process, that is, the reader end. As opposed to a universal SW (software) tool that converts and exports from one standard format (say, XHTML) to multiple formats, maybe there should be a set of clear guidelines for the e-reader of whatever HW/SW type to import and convert 1-2 standard formats to their proprietary format. In other words, rules that dictate how the elements in the original standard format must be read on the end-user’s e-reader, and the e-reader itself does the conversion.

The advantage to this plan is that it does not require the SW tool to adjust every time a new e-reader or doc format comes along, which can be costly and logistically challenging for the standards body, at best. Instead, it is up to the e-reader to conform to the guidelines.

This still allows the consumer the ultimate freedom, that is, to decide which e-reader they want to use based on features. And all that your group needs to be concerned about is the standard format, and the conversion guidelines, and you’re done.

Yeah, I know, I quoted a lot, but I liked the way he put his thoughts out there on a multi-format ebooks. To create a one-for-all type of software to convert everything would be a nightmare for programmers, thus it’s better if everyone just came to an agreement on ONE FORMAT.

ePub Conversion Software

So, then I research the MobileRead forum for software that would help you create the epub format that… uh…I didn’t have to buy.

I came to this listings:

  • Calibre
  • eCub
  • ePubHub

Calibre seems to be the most popular. Adobe InDesign can do it too. A list of other software on “How can I create ePub files from my books?” is at LexCycle.

And why was I looking at ePub? I mean, I already sent my books over in the other acceptable formats for the publishers. So, I don’t need to do the ePub thing (which I haven’t); but I really just stumbled into it.

WRITING SOFTWARE

Storyist

Well, I was first looking for that darn software that can convert my book to all the types of format requirements that all the different publishers wanted. I ran across Storyist that has now added the conversion export for the Kindle format. And as I researched if I wanted this thing, and decided I did want it since it looked like it had so many neat features to keep all your data for your research and files that I make when writing a book (like character listing, a location listing with a field to type the description for each place and also helps me to keep track of them), I found it that it’s only on the Macintosh computer! Then I saw StoryMill, but that was another Macintosh software.

Scrivener

Then I found Scrivener, which, at first was another Macintosh software, but now it can also be used in Windows sometime in 2011 (the above link has a beta download). However, Scrivener doesn’t have a timeline feature, but it sure does have some neat corkboard stuff (look at a YouTube video of it). More on Scrivener down below…

Liquid Story Binder XE

However, Liquid Story Binder XE looks pretty good too, but it seems to be a lot more complex, and I’ll get so absorbed with all the features, and not get any writing done.

PageFour

Then there’s PageFour which looks to be simple and something very easy to use; the same as

WriteWay

or WWV), but WriteWay has a few more features. What I really didn’t like is that certain parts of the software isn’t available unless you pay for it. There’s a standard version and a professional version. It’s the only writing software I saw do that. And the price was really up there. It is quite similar to …

WriteItNow

WriteItNow, which doesn’t look as nice as WriteWay , but I loved the idea of the relationship chart.

StoryWeaver

I saw StoryWeaver, but the look just wasn’t there for me (you gottah scroll all the way down to get to see the pictures on the website).

Dramatica Pro

Dramatica Pro just had too much other stuff (mostly on characters and such) than story, and it costs WAY too much on how the screenshots looked (Liquid Story Binder XE “looks” more like a $200.00+ software than Dramatica Pro).

NewNovelist

NewNovelist looked very nice and it reads your story back to you or you can talk you story into it (says the webpage). I remember years ago when the speech stuff was introduced and it wasn’t very good, but like I said, that was over a decade ago. Things might have improved today (which it has…more about that later down the way).

Pricing as of Feb 2011

  • PageFour ($34.95)
  • Liquid Story Binder XE ($45.95)
  • Scrivener ($45.00)
  • WriteWay (Standard $24.00/Professional $49.00)
  • WriteItNow ($59.95)
  • StoryWeaver ($29.95)
  • Dramatica Pro ($209.95)
  • NewNovelist ($49.99)


FREE STUFF

You know me, gottah research to see if there was some free stuff that might be equivalent to what’s on the buying market.

I found a freesoftware called Jer’s Novel Writer Screenshots, but again, it’s for Macintosh .

Another free software is called StoryBook, but it doesn’t seem to have the actual “writing” function. It’s mainly to help you organize. I didn’t see a main workspace for writing your novel. It’s a great tool if you want to keep the writing and the characters/outline separate though. More on StoryBook below…

I found RoughDraft, but it’s not being updated anymore.

And then there was yWriter, which looks really good for a free software. The video in YouTube definitely explained a lot for me on this software. And this YouTube Video was hilarious (Evil Prompts!!) and was so true to what I wanted, and also mentioned yWriter. So…. I downloaded it.

More on yWriter

I went in and put every scene of my book Creations that I’m currently working on into yWriter. I currently only have 11 Chapters and about 2-8 scenes in each chapter–that took me several hours. I didn’t quite know what a “scene” was, but I figured anywhere that I put double paragraph space to represent time passage or a change of scenery or anywhere I put ***, that’s where I had a scene. A very NEAT thing about importing an entire MSWord document into yWriter is that if I had put a *** break throughout my entire document, yWriter would break out every scene automatically for me (I didn’t find out about this until AFTER I inputted everything in manually), and it would beak out the Chapters if it had the word “Chapter 1” for instance in it. If I opened a scene and it had “* * *”, I could choose “Split scene on ‘* * *'” option, and there you go. It makes a new scene from the stars. I didn’t know if it worked since it looked like it blanked my entire scene out, but when I closed the Scene window, it had the next scenes already in the list. You do have to retype the descriptions and titles for each scene though. But, when I copied and pasted my book Creations into it, I had to do all of that anyway.

More on Scrivener

After playing around with yWriter, I decided to give Scrivener a try. Heck, it’s free for right now anyway with the beta testing. I figure I would take a look. I installed it and it told me it would expire in a week, where then I have to go and re-download another beta updated software. That’s cool. I just wanted to take a look.

It mention a tutorial that would take 30-45 minutes. I was like, ok, I had the time for that. Hmmm. This is a Beta, so you can’t expect very much in instructions. I mean, there was no pictures. Written instructions can only do so much with describing what you should click and where you should look. I found myself re-reading instructions 5-6 times before I accidentally found out what it was trying to tell me. Needless-to-say, it took me about two hours to get through. And when I wanted do a “show-and-tell” and tell my husband about the software after I finished it, I forgot most of what I went through.

Back to yWriter

Bottom-line, going through Scrivener made me appreciate yWriter even more. I didn’t really need a tutorial for yWriter. I just jumped right in. If I wanted to find out more, I did a search for it later. Doing Scrivener tutorial also told me how the other software programs I mentioned Above would need a learning curve as well, LOTS of learning, especially Dramatica Pro

I had so much fun with yWriter, I decided to download StoryBook. Well, just like I thought, I couldn’t find, anywhere, where I could actually write my story. I thought I had missed something, but I didn’t think I did. If I did, please let me know, because I didn’t find it anywhere.

However, in yWriter, there is a way to write in a full screen (Just Right-Click inside the Scenes area when you have it opened and select “Full screen text editor”). There’s also a way to make a Scene or Chapter unused simply by Right-Click and select “Toggled Used/Unused”. An Icon will display to state what mode it’s in. You can make something else, other than a “Chapter” and change it to “Other”, which would work great to make a Timeline using the scenes. Hmmm..I think I’ll just make another post just about yWriter. But as you can see, I’ve chose yWriter as my tool of choice! It’s easy, I can jump right into it, it’s free (though I loved it so much, I donated), and it’s simple.

WOW! A long posting today, huh. It took me several days to get this all in and looking at stuff. But it was fun.

Until next time!

Gonna go play with my yWriter 🙂 My Bestist Friend

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