Sunday, October 9, 2011

Nerd Alert: You win, Scrivener. I'm Yours!

For a while now, I've been debating switching to Scrivener from Final Draft, etc for all my writing purposes. I knew from what I saw in the app store that it was definitely cool. Bulletin boards! Multi-media tools! But would I really use it? 

So many cool features of so many products (I'm gonna go ahead and say about 80% of my iphone apps, I don't really use. Though I do like busting out my 'Angry Scot' app at parties sometimes and I think Shazam is one of the most genuinely useful and genius things humans have ever created. It's right after music itself, in fact.)

But I digress. I've never really thought of myself as a 'visual person.' I mean, I'm definitely into aesthetics. And I can't work in any ugly environments. But, for example, when I work on musicals, etc, why I've never really gone deep into the world of film or screenplays is that typically, I don't see the camera shot. To a lesser extent, I can't visualize the mechanics of how a particular scene is going to be staged. There are exceptions to this, of course, and I have actually beefed up on that side in the last year or so. Which I suppose leads me to where I am right now with this whole Scrivener thing. 

Staring into the mouth of 80,000 words over the next 3-4 years and mountains of infinite research, even here at the beginning, when the stack is small and mostly hypothetical, I'm finding it difficult to wrap my mind around. Two separate but deeply related projects: one fiction, one non-fiction, with photos and videos and just characters and articles til the cows come home. It's too much. I feel too drunk to drive the car. I can't even find the keys in my purse which is full of crap. But! In the span of half a day of importing all my stuff into Scrivener, I feel my anxiety level dropping with every random idea I put and pin on my virtual bulletin board, using adorable virtual notecards. It looks just like my real bulletin board! Except I can copy and paste. 

It tracks everything. It splits things. I can move whole sections around like I was born to do it.  Listen, maybe I just effing LOVE bulletin boards??! (Does this explain my love of Pinterest??) Or perhaps, I guess I do think visually. 

And for like $45 bucks-- which I haven't even spent yet because I'm using Scrivener's badass 30 day free trial (where only days you actually use it count towards your 30!) until that Anthropologie $$ starts rolling in. (Or I suppose I should say ££, but let's be real-- the $$ sign is just rad and so is the word dollar. dolla dolla. Anyhow.)

Any other writer types out there using Scrivener? I have a feeling a lot of my phd compadres are already on board. What are your thoughts? Cool tricks? Gripes?  


  1. I've been using Scrivener for years. I love it. I don't use it for all of my academic writing, but I use it for my first draft when I have something large and I don't yet know how it's going to fit together.

  2. Did you get a job at Anthro? DISCOUNTS!!!

  3. @ Jonathan- thanks for the info. So far so good on this one... I mean, one day in... happy birthday!

    @Dena- this week it's finalized. WOO!


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