My husband bought me Scrivener, a writing tool for organization and more. I think it was in self-defense.
I am forever jotting down notes on whatever is handy, note paper, scratch paper, gum wrappers, printing out reams of computer pages for reference. I have a ton of memos on my desk. The names, dates, people, and places I want to remember. Little tidbits of things I cannot forget. Long summations of things I have put together. Story arcs, timelines, outlines, plot lines, scenes, character profiles, names, dates, people, places, all scribbled down somewhere.
I am also constantly asking myself, sometimes out loud, “Where did I write this or that?” Followed by, “I know I had that somewhere!”
I wrote my first novel everywhere; on the kitchen table, the table on the back porch, at my desk. Notes and papers were scattered everywhere. It was truly amazing that I managed to pull it all together into one cohesive story in consideration of the amount of research that went into that book and my writing habits. I had three diaries spanning 20 years with bookmarks on nearly every page. I also had tons of old notes from the early 1990s. The primary document was written in Word. I am probably more of a “panster” than a “plotter” but I am seeking to change that in order to get more organization in my work.
I am reminded of my son when he was a pre-teen. His job/chore was to wash the pots and pans after supper. One day, I came home from work and saw the kitchen all nice and clean, and I thought, “Great, how wonderful to come home and find the dishes done and the kitchen clean. I complimented him.
The next day I could not find a pot or pan to cook in. I knew I had them, but they were not in the cabinets, the dishwasher, or the stove. I looked everywhere. When I asked him, I got the infamous, “I don’t know.” He insisted that he washed them, and didn’t know what happened to them, “Maybe Daddy had them for something.”
Well, three days later we found them. I noticed the shovel propped against the back door. An unusual place for it. I also noticed a fairly fresh mound of dirt in the back yard. Yes, he had gone through the trouble of burying the pots and pans in the back yard to keep from having to wash them. Now I am thinking, it would have taken all of fifteen or twenty minutes to wash them and put them away, but he spent time (who only knows how long?) and labor digging a deep enough hole in the back yard to bury them. Out of sight, out of mind. What a work effort for him. Wouldn’t it have just been easier to wash them?
I think the nut doesn’t fall far from the tree. Sometimes I will do things the hard way, rather than the easy way. I am hoping Scrivener will help me learn to do my writing the easy way, with a lot less clutter. I am going to follow the 2 hour tutorial today and see if it is user friendly enough for me to get started. Once I get to about chapter three, my panster method of writing can get rather complicated and I am trying alleviate some of that complexity. This next WIP is apt to become a series, and staying organized will be imperative.
If you have ever used Scrivener, or know anything about it or some other writing tool and how it is useful, please let me know. If you have any tips, or can tell me how Scrivener has simplified your writing process, please feel free to comment. Links to your posts about scrivener are welcome also. I would welcome and appreciate all of the help I can get.