Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Collecting My Thoughts with Scrivener

Something that became increasingly clear to me during NaNoWriMo last month was the fact that I have too many places for jotting down ideas. Or rather, I haven't done a good job of compiling all the ideas I've jotted down into one place. At any given time, I have handwritten notes stuffed into my pockets or work back, dozens of quick notes saved to Google Keep, and several Google Docs I've opened up for "really important" ideas that need more space to breathe. While these different note-taking systems are not necessarily a problem when I'm working on a standalone story or book, they've become impossible to manage as my Parted Veil series has continued to grow. I just finished the first draft of Lovecraft's Trial, which means by the time that comes out, I'll have four books and one short story in the series. And since it's a paranormal horror series that spans different worlds, there is a ton of details that have to remain consistent across the series.

So, having just finished NaNoWriMo, my first order of business for the Parted Veil series is to take control of all these note-taking systems and consolidate everything into once place.

That place is Scrivener.

I've used Scrivener for all of my books and stories so far, but mainly for its compiling functions that make formatting ebooks and print books a breeze. What I have not done is actually written my books from scratch in Scrivener, or even begun to dig into its myriad of uses. So, putting together a sort of world bible and database for the parted Veil series is serving two functions for me--helping me compile my notes and forcing me to learn Scrivener inside and out.

I'm not doing this without help, though. I've been looking for a good Scrivener resource for a while now, and on Black Friday, Joseph Michael discounted his critically-acclaimed "Learn Scrivener Fast" course by 80%. I bought it, and in the first few modules of the online course i have already learned a ton. I'm using this note consolidation project as my practice project as I go through the course.

I will continue to use multiple note-taking systems to keep track of ideas as i move forward, but I will now have one place where I will make sure those notes get to in order to make things easier to keep track of as the Parted veil series continues to grow. I'll be posting more about eh "Learn Scrivener Fast" course as I make my way through it as well.

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