What’s the goal when we get lost in the doing of it?
The other day I participated in a Scrivener workshop during a local Houston writers’ group meeting. I’ve been using it since last January while participating in the 2014 NaNoWriMo run. So many writers in my NaNoWriMo group were debating Word vs Scrivener, with the later coming up with the most praise for organization and features.
For some time I’d been fighting with Word as my primary novel writing software, and felt something more flexible and feature conscious was needed. I bought Scrivener and immediately felt overwhelmed. It reminded me of when Microsoft “improved” Excel and Works until they were no longer low tech friendly. Luckily one kind soul suggested making use of the YouTube videos out there, and learning it became tremendously easier.
While I still haven’t mastered a lot of it, Scrivener has been a time and productivity life saver. Rearranging chapters, reorganizing outlines were never so easy with Word.
Here’s where my meeting came into the fray. An established author taught the workshop, someone who’s got the street cred in a writers’ group. I overheard two people from the first made up their minds it was too hard to learn, took too long from their book writing, etc. (Writers as a whole are easily distracted, so it’s a valid point.)
Yes, it’s hard to teach complicated software in 1 1/2 hours, but it’s worth a look. The only time I use Word now is to download from Scrivener for a run through Grammarly, then off to my beta reader. If you’re content with Word, good for you. If Word makes you crazy when saving drafts, rearranging chapters, dialog, then give Scrivener a chance and check out the videos. Take a class. There’s a really good reason why so many writers are in love with it, and just like real love, it’s worth the work.
Some Links for Scrivener helps and tutorials: