Scrivener is a powerful writing tool. I write about it weekly with tips and usage ideas. To read more of my posts click the Scrivener tag or category at the end of the page.
Scrivener is chocked full of helpful features – so many, in fact, new users can easily be dumbstruck. But after using this software for a short time specific features begin to shine. Users become attached to a handy tool or two and continually make use of them.
For me, the binder was so revolutionary in my work. I could easily find pieces of a project and jump to them. But since I imported several projects when I first started using Scrivener it wasn’t until I started developing a brand new project that I truly appreciated the Binder’s usefulness. I could play around with the order of a story and add or move chapters and scenes around so that they made sense.
When I did a structural edit of The Bow of Destiny, I was really able to quickly overhaul the big-picture and then begin adjusting content to fit my new organization. I did work in minutes that used to take days to assess and complete. I had the benefit of seeing the book like a blueprint using the Binder.
The same was true with An Arrow Against the Wind. Even though I haven’t done a full structural edit, I was able to identify the holes so I could fill-in with missing content. Likewise, I could see how to order different point-of-view scenes and chapters so that these were in an order that made sense.
There are other main features in Scrivener to which writers gravitate based on their writing style and needs. The Corkboard is extremely useful for getting an up-close look of folder organization as well as that of documents in folders. It brings a subtle nuance to structural development. With the use of meta-data you can easily determine the status of folders and documents.
The Outliner is especially effective for large non-fiction books and papers as well as fiction. Once again, Scrivener’s flexiblility shines by showing that important outline as the scaffold of a project. Without this feature many writers would be lost.
But there are many other Scrivener features that assist writers. Collections, layouts, project templates and document templates are just a few tools that make writing simpler and more efficient. It’s hard to choose what my favorite is – and I may change my mind later – but mine is the Binder. I’ve included a poll so you can vote on your favorite feature in Scrivener. It you choose “Other”, be sure to leave a comment about it yours is.
About the Author
P. H. Solomon lives in the greater Birmingham, AL area where he strongly dislikes yard work and sanding the deck rail. However, he performs these duties to maintain a nice home for his loved ones as well as the family’s German Shepherds. In his spare time, P. H. rides herd as a Computer Whisperer on large computers called servers (harmonica not required). Additionally, he enjoys reading, running, most sports and fantasy football. Having a degree in Anthropology, he also has a wide array of more “serious” interests in addition to working regularly to hone his writing. The Bow of Destiny is his first novel-length title with more soon to come.
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