By Aimee on

Scrivener. What is it? Why am I writing a post about it? Well, here’s the thing. I was getting myself ready for Nanowrimo. Doing a bunch of research and naturally just happened upon this pretty piece of software. I was able to download a Nanowrimo specific trial version and I am in love. I feel organised (enough) and motivated. So my post is a little list of the things I love and how I have used Scrivener to set up my Nano novel. This will also give you a sneak peak into what I have been writing this week and a bit.

The Binder

binder screenshot

Oh this has to be my favourite part. The Nano trial came with a template that helped set this up for me. I am able to break my novel down into chapters and then go one step further and break them down into scenes. This isn’t a necessary step but I am finding it is helping. You can then add little summaries or chapter titles to help your thoughts. The ones listed in the image aren’t all the chapters just the ones I have begun to organise and write. The names are a work in progress

There is also a section to list characters, places, notes, research and trash. The section labelled Front Matter, is a section to help you when you compile your novel later.

Word count

word count screenshot

The second thing I love is this word count. It gives me an overall goal of the 50,000 words as well as a daily goal. The daily goal also recalculates daily depending on how many words I did the day before. It also gives me a deadline and how many days left to complete my task. I have this up and running in all of my writing sessions as I feel it is truly motivating.

Composition Mode

composition screenshot

Another thing that I have found useful when feeling distracted by everything else on my computer is composition mode. As you can see it creates a black and grey background with light grey writing. It is more pleasing to the eye and helps my eyes feel the strain less.

Compiling function

compile screenshot

One of the coolest things scrivener can do is compile your work into different formats with a click of a button. Whether its a manuscript, script, ebook, printed or for PDF this software has the option. I haven’t played around with this too much yet as I haven’t written enough to compile anything but it’s fun knowing that once this is all finished I can send it off to a few people to help me edit.

Split Screen

split screen screenshot

I enjoy this feature for when I need to see some of my research or character information whilst i’m writing. I know theres a way to change the split screen from vertical to horizontal but haven’t quite figured that out yet. I’m also pretty sure you can do more than two screens as well but I haven’t needed this yet.

As you can see I haven’t been able to give this software the time it deserves to really utilise it. But these few things have been amazingly helpful thus far. The software also comes with roughly a two hour tutorial but I haven’t had time for that. I’ll wait till December.