Novel Software


From mankind’s earliest days, communication grew more and more in importance. The ancient Egyptians found a way to keep their stories alive for generations to come. Their writing tools were archaic, stone tablets and a chisel-like tool. My, how things have changed since then.

I remember writing stories, articles for a local newspaper, back in the old days. Yes, the days of using a manual typewriter. Thank God I was a fast typist (120 wpm on a manual) but I rarely, if ever, made a typo. I accredited this skill as a result of taking classical piano lessons from the time I was six years old until reaching sixteen years of age when I traded places with my instructor, and took on a part-time job teaching piano.

When I was able to afford an electric typewriter, I was ecstatic. Not only was it easier on the fingers, but the response time between clicking on the keys and the letters actually appearing on paper was so much faster! Wow! How could this ever get better?

Fast forward a few years and the word processor was introduced. Yep, again I thought it was a marvelous improvement, especially since one’s document could be saved on something called a floppy disc. So cool! Definitely, this was the end of the road for tools that could help a writer write, change, edit, save, re-write and print their prize manuscript. Again, I thought that it just couldn’t get better. I had so many documents saved on floppy discs!

Enhanced writer’s tools remained in development before hitting the market again to  change the way we write, forevermore. It was the dawn of the personal computer, one of which I owned. Even though it was “fascinating” to the standards of the time, those of us who can remember the minimal abilities of early computers, and navigating in the DOS system, can only compare it as the Mesozoic Era of the computer world.

Microsoft Works was the first writing software I ever used, eventually replaced with MS Word which has more features and uses for business, but falls short for writers who could use a more intuitive software for their novel writing.

After researching, scanning through blogs, and talking with other author-friends on Facebook, I was introduced to “Scrivener”. As described by Wikipedia, “Scrivener is a word-processing program and outliner designed for authors. Scrivener provides a management system for documents, notes and metadata. This allows the user to organize notes, concepts, research and whole documents for easy access and reference.”

Once again, I thought that author-writing tools could not get better than Scrivener, but, I know better now. Advancement is part of our human nature, and Scrivener may add more features to their software in the future, although I cannot imagine what more could be needed. For me, this is absolutely a ‘Novel Software’.

Being a writer is like having homework every night for the rest of your life. – Lawrence Kasdan


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