When an old friend asks…

One Good Thing…

It’s time for the weekly  post of a feature I’ve chosen to title “One Good Thing.” Each weekend, I’ll post something about what has been good to—or for—me during the week. 
Scrivener talk

Earlier this week, a writer friend asked me what I thought about the writing program Scrivener and if I thought she should try it out or not. And since I enjoy sharing things about Scrivener, I realized that I had my One Good Thing to share with everyone.

Yes, I have written about Scrivener in the past, and about how much I really feel comfortable using it to do all of my writing (blog posts, short stories, novels). Although in the beginning I wasn’t too sure about it due to my comfort level in using Word for all things writing.

Plus, like anything else that is vast and complex, there is a pretty fair amount of time required to invest in understanding Scrivener. Like so many others who became frustrated and overwhelmed by it, I thought I had to know everything about it in order to make it work for me.

Consequently, because I was unsure about most things about it, my grasp of the powerful writing program was nearly nonexistent, even though there’s a pretty good tutorial built into the program. In short, I was ready to forget the whole idea and scurry back to the familiar world of Word.

Fortunately, before giving up completely, I found Gwen Hernandez’s Scrivener for Dummies, followed by her online courses in Scrivener “basics,” and things began to look less daunting and frightening! A simple truth revealed itself, finally: One need not use every feature of the program to accomplish one’s writing goals! 

After using Scrivener for four years now, I still use very few of the wide array of wonderful features or parts of it. What’s good for me, may not be good for another. And various things others find useful in their writing may not be good for my needs.

And that’s one of the real strengths of Literature & Latte’s Scrivener: One can pick and choose and put to use any parts that make writing work for him or her.

Here are some of the Scrivener features I like and use most often:

  • “Compose mode”-Allows me to write without distractions.
  • Binder organization-I can move scenes or chapters around as I see fit.Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 12.50.39 PM.png
  • Writing Progress Targets-I can set a desired word count “target” and will be notified whenever the word count is reached.
  • Compiling-Although it’s a bit tricky to understand and fully use without some really good guidance from folks like Gwen Hernandez, it’s a very powerful way to get my work formatted and “out there” in the form I want to publish. (E-book, paperback, etc.)

I learned a long time ago that whatever makes one comfortable in the creative process is the best regimen to follow. Some like to write things out longhand or use an old typewriter or voice their words or type away using one of the zillions of writing programs available.

Whatever mode best helps one get to the finish line of a piece of writing is the best mode for that person. As for me, I’m most comfortable with Scrivener, and I’m always happy to have the opportunity to talk about things I like. Glad my old friend asked me about it this week!

Until next time, that’s one good thing!