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Scrivener: The Essential Writing Tool

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. Sorry for the hiatus in writing a new post for several weeks but my efforts have been directed elsewhere. I hope to share more posts on this topic in the future.

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Scrivener LogoI was pleased to release my book, The Bow of Destiny, earlier this week. As you can imagine, Scrivener was a big help in self-publishing this fantasy novel. There are so many ways I’ve used the software to get to this point that it’s hard to imagine doing it all without Scrivener. It’s been a long hike – like doing the Appalachian Trail – and Scrivener has been in my pack the whole way. Here are some ways that Scrivener has helped me self-publish over the last year:

1. Newsletters – I used my newsletter template to write each volume this year and email it to mailing list followers. Scrivener has been instrumental in this since I have a project for all my newsletters for this year. I can open the project, write my content and transfer it to mail out easily. If I didn’t use Scrivener, I would have been hunting for all my information in separate files.

Multi-Function Tool - photo licensed via iStockPhoto

Multi-Function Tool – photo licensed via iStockPhoto

2. Editing the Book – The Bow of Destiny was largely completed when I really started using Scrivener so I imported it and completed my editing and development in a novel template. The same is true of the next book, An Arrow Against the Wind. However, with this second book, I still needed to complete the rough draft and do some structural editing. Scrivener was perfect for these tasks after I imported the book since I could use collections to organize my structural editing – see my posts on the topic: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4. However, the third book, The White Arrow, will be entirely developed in Scrivener and I’ll start that process in November with occasional, related posts about how I’m using Scrivener to do the development.

3. Project tracking – Scrivener allows me to do all kinds of project tracking. There are the built-in tools that track a project’s stats. Also, there’s meta-data to mark the status of sections and scenes in projects. However, I also used my Author Platform Manager, a custom project template I developed, to track what I’m doing overall as a writer. I can put anything necessary in it. If I develop an idea in it I can transfer it to an open project with the Scratchpad.

4. Blogging – Part of growing as an author includes blogging. I couldn’t have blogged near as much without Scrivener. It allowed me to put all my blog posts in one project for the year and create an ongoing schedule to follow. Without using Scrivener, I would have been lost and disorganized in the effort. It’s allowed me to often work ahead when I needed to and still keep the busy blogging schedule.

Writing5. Blog Tour Development – I developed a blog tour project template based on my blog template and what a big help Scrivener was there. I was able to work on my tour ideas and posts well in advance as I developed all of my author content. It’s been a major help just to keep all that in one place and work steadily at the release. I’m starting a new one with ideas within the week for the release of An Arrow Against the Wind 4/18/2016. With editing on this upcoming title ongoing, there’s no time like the present to organize the next release.

6. Developing & Writing Short Stories – Part of my release has involved using short fiction. I’ve also written some other short stories this year that are being submitted to magazine markets. Without Scrivener I would have floundered through developing these stories. The good thing is that with Scrivener, I can easily import these into another project to develop an anthology if I want to go that route. I’ve been able to manage and organize my short fiction with ease using Scrivener.

7. Document Templates – This feature in Scrivener has been very important to me all year. I’ve been able to use these templates to create my basic blog structure in my blog project. What a time-saver! I’ve also been able to use this feature to save more time writing my newsletters, short stories and more. By making document templates in my projects, I’m able to do repetitive writing without duplicating the same material repeatedly. If the material for the template needs an update that’s simple enough to change – one time.

Scrivener has been with me all the way during the last year. It’s been indispensable for me as a writer. I would not have done near as much as I have without it. I look forward to continuing my usage and expanding how I use it. As I develop an entire novel from it I expect to use the composition tools more than I have such as the lay-out manger as well as features for word searches and more.

BOD FinalIf you’ve published using Scrivener, how has it helped you get there? If you use it for other writing, how does Scrivener make you more effective as a writer?

I’ll make an appearance on 8/13 in RRBC’s Book & Blog Block Party. Then I’ll be on The Lost Bow Blog Tour from 8/14-20. I’ll post more news about the tour as it becomes available.

And one final tidbit – for those who might have seen it on my Twitter feed, I’ve been contacted by a teacher about including The Bow of Destiny in her curriculum. I don’t know much at this time other than it’s being considered. If it is, I’ll share more information ASAP. It’s interesting news at this point and another great reason to write!

To find out more about The Bow of Destiny, click over to one of these online retailers:

Amazon

IMG_4154-EditAbout 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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Quotes from An Arrow Against the Wind #1

“Every ax-maid I have known of would give her life for her man. You are no different. You wish to be near and share the danger with him.” – Tordug to Limbreth

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Excerpt from The Bow of Destiny

bow of destiny

Athson sat up, his chest heaving. That was too real. His ears rang with the eagle’s screams and his face burned with the rush of frigid wind. What were those words? Something about a bow? He shook his head. Could that be it?

Soul’s-ease – he needed it. No. He’d forgotten it at the ranger station. He’d been so careless.

His gut knotted at Eagle’s Aerie glowing beneath the moon. He remembered the star falling, the knife dripping with blood. His knife. He’d bought it from that Rokan merchant weeks ago and left it in Auguron with Heth and Cireena. He didn’t know why. Athson shut his eyes and the weapon gleamed with malevolence.

He scrambled to his feet beside the low campfire. The sensation of wind scouring his face while falling clung to his mind. He exhaled. “A dream, nothing more.”

Spark flattened his ears and his tail remained still.

Athson inhaled cold air, which cleared his head. He shifted his weight from one leg to the other, observing details as his racing heartbeat slowed. The fire needed stoking much the same as when the dream started. The moon hung where it had been in its path when the eagle had dropped him. Odd. It should be lower. More time had passed than what he’d dreamed. Shouldn’t it? Athson grimaced as he rubbed his irritated hands together. He shivered in the chill as the surf rustled in the distance.

“Just a dream.” His thumping heart slackened. “Just a dream.” The slight breeze picked at his clothes. It had nothing to do with anything in his past.

SparkThe mountain hound’s tail remained still.

He watched the summit of the bluff. Was the old woman in his dream the Withling? “I hope not. They’re trouble…”

No, he couldn’t talk about those things, he needed to avoid it all – and them. “But it was so real and I remember her wrinkles.” The eagle’s flapping still thundered in his ears. What was this inheritance? What did the visions mean? “If it’s Withling’s business, I won’t be part of it.” He’d suffered enough of their trouble.

Athson flinched at the memory of the dagger. He tossed more branches onto his fire and then rubbed his sore hands together above the growing heat. It was so real. Who were those women? The old woman at the campfire looked like the one who tossed him the packet. Was either the Withling? “The young woman’s interesting.” Athson shot a sidelong glance at Spark.

The dog looked up from sniffing around, sat, thumped his tail and gave a soft woof.

Athson“Really? How would you know? It wasn’t real. I haven’t had my draught in days. You aren’t real.”

He knelt by his blanket and froze on one knee. His jaw went slack for several seconds as awareness flooded his mind. He snatched his weapons – bow, arrows, and long-knife – and scrambled into the surrounding trees.

Spark bounded after him and waited while he panted.

Again, Athson’s heart pounded. He stared back toward his fire and his blanket and what lay beside it. The packet sat unwrapped on the ground.

The Bow of Destiny is featured on blog tour this week: The Lost Bow Blog Tour first stop is at Harmony Kent Online!

To find out more about The Bow of Destiny, click over to Amazon and find out more!

Amazon

IMG_4154-EditAbout 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.

Sign-up to receive my free ebooks today.

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