Scrivener-Mac Version Review

Posted by on December 16, 2011 at 10:00 am

This software is awesome. Scrivener is an all-in-one draft program for writing, not just novels, but also screen plays. You’re able to organize in your way, keep track of your drafts, and it has Project Templates and Document Templates that you can create yourself. Scrivener’s goal isn’t to take place of your word processing program, but to help you break down your project into workable chunks. It’s a good combination of Yarny and Growly Notes (or OneNote if you are on Windows), plus a ton of extra features.

Scrivener divides work up by projects. Each project uses a ”Binder” to keep track of different folders and documents you’ve created. The Binder automatically creates three folders for you: Draft, Research and Trash. The Draft folder will be your main folder, where you can create sub-folders, documents, and really what ever else you want. The research folder you can use to pile all of your research for this project.. Here you can import photos, pdfs, audio, and a variety of other media so that all your research and writing are just a click away. The Trash folder isn’t as daunting as it sounds, if you delete a file it goes here, just in case you want it back. The only way you lose it is if you empty out the trash.

The “editor”, or the word processing part, of the program allows you to write your novel or screen play right next to the binder. It’s very similar to how Growly Notes and OneNote look, where you can see the organization of the notebook as you write. The editor has all the necessary formatting capabilities. It also has the option to view any document, folder, or picture in stacked split screens. The editor also features “Snapshot.” Snapshot allows you to take a current ‘snapshot’ of the work, and store it. This way you can edit and still have the original ,or if you make a dramatic change in plot, you have the version before massive changes happened. You can take multiple snapshots and compare them to each other as you go about your edits.

With each document you have the option of filling out an index card with a synopsis of what is in that chapter. This index card is put on a pin board so that when you select the pin board view of a folder, you can see the order of your documents by the synopsis on the index cards. This view also has the choice of ‘free flow’ where you can rearrange the cards to see the flow differently, if you decide that you like the changes, all you have to do is click on commit to change, and everything changes for you. You don’t have to drag and drop on your own to recreate the order.

Worried about switching programs in the middle of a project? Scrivener allows you to import your documents and divide them with ease. They want the transition to be smooth between them and a real word processor. When it comes to completing your project you can chose to export it to a word processor, a print, or even a pdf format. (There are many other options available) It also allows you to chose what documents to include in the export, so you don’t have to include all your notes, comments, outlines, and just have a nice clean draft. There is also controls for formatting, options such as page breaks can be added between documents.

There are so many features to Scrivener that it’s impossible to review them all, above are the basic ones. I suggest that you download the free trial and give it a go, just a couple days of using the trial and I’m sold on it.

9/10 FleshEatingZipper

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