Blog, Blog

A Review of Scrivener

Dear Reader,

I am a fan of Scrivener and have used it to help me write my books since 2016. After four years here are my thoughts on Scrivener:

Pros.

  1. I think it is a great product to help you organize your story. The fact that you can drag and drop chapters into a different order is something I believe is critical and I use it extensively.
  2. The fact that you can label your drafts easily is also something that is very helpful.
  3. The ability to save pictures and notes and have them in the right hand margin is something I really love.
  4. The template sheets for scenes and characters are wonderful especially if you’ve not used character sheets before and don’t know where to start. When I first started writing I had no idea what to do with the character sheets, but now they are the first thing I go to when starting a new story. These are a great way to get started. You can edit them which is awesome especially have you’ve gotten in the habit of fleshing out your characters ahead of time.
  5. The formatted sections for the Front Matter and the formats for paperback and ebooks is nice, but some of that may get lost depending on how you are publishing and if you are exporting into Word with another pre-set format.
  6. Another wonderful feature is the output formats and one specifically for NaNoWriMo, (National Novel Writing Month). If you participate in NaNoWriMo, I’d say Scrivener is a must. I don’t participate in NaNoWritMo without it.
  7. The ability to export to Word is simple and painless.

Cons.

  1. Some of the features like the little icons you can put next to the chapters or scenes in the outline, I find distracting. I spend too much time worrying about color coding and putting the appropriate icon next to something. I get distracted by shiny objects.
  2. The fact that is doesn’t work very well on a non-apple computer. I am an Apple user and this isn’t a personal issue for me. However, there was a time when I did not use Apple computers and using Scrivener in those environments was incredibly frustrating.
  3. The talk to text feature isn’t as smooth as I think it could be. I think the talk to text feature is better in Pages or Word.
  4. Also, I recently discovered Plottr and haven’t used Scrivener as much recently. That may be because Plottr is new but more about that next week.

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