April 10th, 2011


In Which We Are Late To The Party

Or, Indiana Monkey and the Last Crusade For Scrivener

Okay, so recently I discovered Srivener.

Well, technically, it wasn't so recently.  I confess to occassionally going to the Scrivener site and scrolling through its pages with a certain amount of longing.  Because, and this may shock some of you to the point of abadoning the Writer Monkey forever, I am, in fact, a PC.  As in this, which probably explains a lot:

For the longest time Scrivener was only available for Mac.  Then someone waved a magic your-wish-shall-be-granted-POOF wand, and Scrivener went into beta test for PC. (Pause for a moment of Ultimate Squeeing and coaxing the Ninja Katz from under the desk.)

I'd been working with file folders and my trusty White Board (which I will never give up, NEVER), but Scrivener puts it all in one place, including my research, PLUS I can customize my folders to match The Weekend Novelist program.  And it gives me a nifty Corkboard of Awesomeness with CATEGORIES (more squeeing, more collecting of cats).

So the Writer Monkey said herself, "Self! Thou shalt Plot using the Corkboard of Awesomeness (with Categories and option to include the text in the manuscript) and search for the appropriate points at which to place objects, just like Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark with that staff thingy."

Waitaminute.  I wonder if I can--Ohmygawd I can attach pictures of objects to my plot so I can TRACK them! (general squeeing, giving up on cats)

The Writer Monkey then spent an inordinate amount of time in the Space-Time Suck Continuum that is Google Images, honing Googlefu skills by extracting images and attaching them to little virtual index cards.  Which is still, believe it or not, meeting my objective for ROW80 this week.

For those keeping score at home, I've gathered my objects in a (Scrivener) list, I've attached them to characters (in Scrivener) and then posted them to essential plot points on the Corkboard of Awesomeness (via-you guessed it-Scrivener). TWN provides another, final,  exercise wherein the diligent writer monkey inserts objects into dialogue between two characters:

Being a somewhat musical monkey as well as a writerly one, I chose my minstrel's lute, as this is the one I feel I understand best.  Her instrument is an extension of her, part of her soul. What if it were in danger of being lost forever?

ML: I need to find it.
FK: We'll send someone back for it.
ML: You don't understand.
FK: The ship is about to pull apart.

(WM note: notice how sneakily FK's object worked itself into the scene. *Notices characters staring at her* Right. Sorry. Carry on.)

ML: I'll go down with it before I lose my lady to the waters.

And so on, spinning down the page between characters A and B, starting simple and going deeper as you progress.  What we ended up with here is not only nice bit of characterization, but the promising start of a First Encounter scene between protagonist and helper/romantic interest.

Which we can then automatically opt to include in the manuscript on Scrivener (squee, etc).

Next week: Exploring plotting with two (count 'em-two) protagonists.