scrivener

Writers in the Grove Scrivener Project Template for NaNoWriMo

Writers in the Grove members have been participating in the annual National Novel Writing Month, NaNoWriMo, for several years. Along the way we’ve shared many word trackers and NaNoWriMo Scrivener Templates, and this year, we are introducing our own.

In the free downloadable zip file, you will find:

  • NaNoWriMo Template by Writers in the Grove: In Scrivener, go to File > New Project > Options > Import Templates and import this template into Scrivener. To use, look in the Fiction section and select it. Edit to suit your needs.

    NaNoWriMo Writers in the Grove Scrivener Project Template

  • NaNoWriMo Word and Hour Tracker by Lorelle and Writers in the Grove: An Excel spreadsheet for tracking your NaNoWriMo progress by word count or hour count. Instructions included.

    NaNoWriMo Writers in the Grove Spreadsheet for Word TrackingNaNoWriMo Writers in the Grove Spreadsheet for Hour Tracking

  • NaNoWriMo Scrivener Project by Lorelle: This is the original NaNoWriMo project for the Scrivener template if you wish to open it and explore and modify it as your own. Please use File > Save As to rename it to protect the original.

All files are designed to be reused over and over again. We may make changes, so stop by for updates once a year, or more would be appreciated.

As with all new ventures, we’d appreciate feedback and corrections and we will update the files here accordingly.

Again, you can download the free zip file with all the goodies, and have fun with NaNoWriMo.

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Using Scrivener for Poetry

The Scrivener Basics Workshop by Writers in the Grove begins September 21, 2017, Thursday at 6:30Pm at the Forest Grove Senior and Community Center in Forest Grove, Oregon. There is still space available.

Scrivener isn’t just for writing and publishing fiction or non-fiction. Many successful poets use the power of Scrivener to not just create their poetry books, but also to track poetry submissions to contests, magazines, and other publishing media.

Here are some resources to learn more about how poets are using Scrivener for their own poetry books and for anthologies.

Scrivener Basics Workshop Starts September 21, 2017

Writers in the Grove, a Forest Grove community creative writing group, presents a 4-week workshop for writers called “Scrivener Basics Workshop.” It runs for 4 week and begins on Thursday, September 21, 2017, from 6:30 – 9:00 PM at the Forest Grove Community and Senior Center in Forest Grove, Oregon.

Dream of writing your memoirs? A novel? That story that’s been nagging you for years?

Scrivener example from Autostraddle

Scrivener is a “complete writing studio” to help you from idea to final draft. It holds all your ideas, research, and writing in one place, keeping you focused and on track to publishing. It is the affordable writer’s tool that inspires and helps you write that book.

This 4-week workshop covers the basics of Scrivener including imports, organization and layout of your writing, keeping on task, research, and the basics you need to know.

Scrivener offers a free trial version. You will need to download and install the program prior to the first night of class. Prior publishing experience not required. Familiarity with computers is essential.

Normally these courses are well over $200. As a fundraiser for the Forest Grove Community and Senior Center, the instructor is making this 4-week course available for only $100 with the proceeds benefiting the center.

Lorelle VanFossen of Lorelle on WordPress has been using and teaching workshops and classes on Scrivener for over seven years. Her workshops are educational as well as entertaining. Lorelle has published several books prior to using Scrivener, and many since discovering the writing software program, and it changed her life and her writing. Lorelle has been teaching web publishing, social media, WordPress, and blogging for almost thirty years. Lorelle has also published many tutorials on Scrivener on this site for members and fans of Writers in the Grove and NaNoWriMo.

Bring a copy of a story or collection of stories you’ve written in a word processing program like Microsoft Word on your computer or a flash drive. We will be learning how to import into Scrivener.

You will need to bring your laptop, power cord, mouse (with extra batteries), and something to write on and take notes. You will log into the free WIFI at the Center so ensure you know how to do this before you arrive, or arrive early to get help getting online. It is highly recommended that you bring a water bottle, too. There is plenty of free parking at the center.

There is limited space for this special event so register now to guarantee a seat.

More information, contact the Forest Grove Community and Senior Center.

Register in person or by check or phone with the Forest Grove Community Center: 503-357-2021.

Image Credit: Autostraddle

Writing Tips for Organizing and Planning Your Writing

There are two aspects to the concept of organization for writers. There is the organization of your writing environment, be it your working space or virtual space you write in such as the type of computer, software, even the way your writing is backed up. Then there is the organization of the actual writing, keeping track of characters, plots, story lines, names, places, etc., and structuring the end result into something readable as well as publishable.

Discussing this with a few Writers in the Grove members, we realized that while the two concepts were separate, they were actually inseparable. As one pointed out, the spark of an idea can happen anywhere and you must have a system in place to jot it down and ensure it isn’t lost between the grocery store moment of inspiration and the moment you can finally lean into your computer and start writing. Throughout the writing process of a project, the project is with you, wherever you are, whenever your imagination catches fire. A well-structured habit system combined with well-maintained tools and access points for preserving those thoughts help you through the entire process, right through to the point of publishing.

So we decided to offer this short collection of writing tips by others for organizing and planning your writing to embrace both aspects, helping you be organized within your writing environment, physical and virtual, and in the writing process.

Writing Organization Tools and Environments

One tool that our group embraced that changed more than a few writing lives is Scrivener by Literature and Latte. Available for both Windows and Mac, Scrivener is what you use to write your story before you move it to publishing programs and tools, though Scrivener will publish directly to various ebook and print formats. Scrivener is your idea holder, notebook, character development tool, and story line planner. It helps you write your book or whatever is on your writing list. We highly recommend it and have an ongoing series to help you learn Scrivener better.

Some helpful articles on using Scrivener to organize your writing include:

How To Organize Your Non-fiction Book – The Future of Ink: This article offers six core tools and methods for organizing your book: piles, folders, cards, Evernote, and binders. The author also mentions Scrivener as it is highly capable of embracing piles, folders, cards, etc. The article offers tips for organizing your writing in general, time and space for writing, and more tips to help you keep on track of the writing. These apply to fiction as well as non-fiction. (more…)

NaNoWriMo 2016

It is almost time for the annual NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month. It begins at midnight October 31, and runs through the last day of November.

The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words (and complete a novel) in 30 days.

Don’t stress out yet. The numbers divide down to 1,667 words a day, typically 60-90 minutes of writing.

Join more than 300,000 people globally, and Writers in the Grove members, by participating actively or passively. This can be a solo experience or a highly social one. You can connect online and/or connect in person through the many local activities, events, and write-ins where people gather in a social space to write and get to know each other.

Go to the NaNoWriMo site for more information, and check out last year’s “It’s NaNoWriMo Time: How To, Tips, Techniques, and Survival Advice.”

Last year, Writers in the Grove had about eight people participating, some openly, some secretly, not willing to go public because they were afraid of failure. Let’s clear something up right from the start. There is no failing with this. The goal is to write, and anything that gets you writing, and keeps you writing, is a good thing, whether or not you achieve the 50K goal. Many never reach it, but keep trying year after year.

NaNoWriMo is not just about the word count. It is about the writing.

To handle the diverse Writers in the Grove membership needs, we are once again challenging our members to do one of the following:

  1. Write a minimum of 1,667 words a day.
  2. Write for an hour minimum a day.

What You Will Learn From Participating in NaNoWriMo

Last year was the first year we had many members participating and we all learned so much, it was an amazing journey. Here are some samples:

  • I learned I could write consistently every day.
  • I learned how to write consistently daily.
  • I discovered some fears and road blocks I didn’t know I had.
  • I figured out how to work harder with less research.
  • I just wrote. Usually I spend too much time in my head and less writing, but I just wrote.
  • I learned it isn’t as hard as it sounds.
  • I learned that I had something to say, a story to tell.
  • I realized how much I allow life to get in my way. I sit down to write and the phone rings, doorbell goes off, email pings, thoughts roam – and how much I need to just say no.
  • I realized that the true art in writing is editing after you write.

NaNoWriMo is a chance to note all the things that get in your writing way. Keep a notebook and jot them down when you encounter them, and make a plan around or through them. You will always need those solutions as you charge ahead with your writing career. (more…)

Scrivener Tips: The Scratch Pad

This is another Scrivener Tip from Writer’s in the Grove. We will be presenting a series of Scrivener workshops soon in Forest Grove, Oregon. Until then, or after, if you have a question about how to use Scrivener, let us know and we’ll do our best to help you out.

Scrivener - Scratch Pad on Tools Menu - Writers in the Grove.Ever get a new idea, a bit of inspiration, as you are writing? I used to turn to a piece of paper or sticky note to jot down my idea, but found that by the time I made the note and switched back to my writing program, I’ve lost track of what I’m writing. Moving my eyes from the computer screen and fingers from the keyboard invites distraction. Luckily, Scrivener offers a way to make notes and keep on writing.

The Scrivener Scratch Pad is built into Scrivener and can be accessed by:

  • Windows: Tools > Scratch Pad or CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+P
  • Mac: SHIFT+CMD+ENTER

You can add a note to it quickly with a mouse from within the Scratch Pad window. Click the T for Text in the bottom left corner to create a new note and start typing.

Scrivener Scratch Pad - examples - Writers in the Grove.

You can add as many notes as you wish in the Scratch Pad.

You can send the note to Scrivener later as the start of a new plot shift or poem.

  1. Select the note.
  2. Click Send file to Scrivener.

Two options will appear to either copy it to a specific file or new one, or append text to another text, adding it to the bottom. You can also select a portion of the note and send just the selected text.

One of the cool things about the Scratch Pad in Scrivener is that the notes persist between projects. You can make notes on other projects that pop into your head or you discover while researching another project. Think of all the ways you can use the Scratch Pad in Scrivener to deal with these thoughts while staying focused on the task at hand.

For more tips, see “Using the Scratch Pad in Scrivener” by The Digital Researcher, and the following:

Writing Your Book: Worksheets and Templates for Writers by Jamie Gold

The amazing prolific writer and educator, Jami Gold offers a wide variety of Worksheets for Writers in Excel spreadsheets, documents, and Scrivener templates. We’ve mentioned this collection in our NaNoWriMo articles and tips. These are precious gems you need in your writing toolbox.

These forms are essential for developing and writing your book, be it fiction or memoir. These worksheets and charts will help you structure your story, develop characters and scenes, and gives you a checklist for all of the things you need to have to make your book a success.

Download these and save to a master toolbox folder for your writing on your computer. To use them, make copies and rename them to the project you are writing as well as the date. You will use many of these over and over again for everything you write.

Scrivener: Printing Your Manuscript

Scrivener_-_Compile_Contents_ScreenThe process of printing a manuscript in Scrivener is called compiling. It represents the power in Scrivener to literally compile your writing how you wish it to appear in print or in a digital file for the next steps in preparing your book for publishing.

In one of my Scrivener projects, I have 6 versions of a book I’m working on.

  • The original draft
  • Second and third drafts
  • A copy edited version returned from a copy editor
  • The cleaned up version of that copy editor
  • Another version with alpha reader edits added

I could have even more versions, and at any time along the process of writing I could print out any of these versions for posterity, or go back to an earlier version to find out why I wrote it that way or what an editor had to say, or restore an edited version to one of the original versions, all within the same project file.

When it comes time to print these versions, or the final glorified version of my manuscript, it begins with a compilation process as I choose which documents to include or exclude from the version I’m creating – or, in Scrivener language, compiling.

Remember, as discussed in the tutorial on how to format your manuscript for writing, what appears on the screen may be different what the final version prints. (more…)

Scrivener: Formatting Your Manuscript for Writing

I’ve been asked to continue this ongoing series on how to use Scrivener, a powerful writing tool that is a must for many professional writers. Scrivener works for those writing poetry, fiction, non-fiction, screenplays, and…the list is long. It is a pre-production tool, a tool for the writing and development of your material for publishing. While Scrivener includes the ability to export the information as an ebook and material ready for publishing, it isn’t designed as a tool for publishing a pretty book. It is the workhorse that gets you to that point.

Scrivener is software installed on your Windows or Mac machine and is produced by Literature and Latte. The price is very reasonable and the purchased version of Scrivener maybe installed on your desktop and laptop without problems so you may work in both environments.

So far in this series we’ve covered:

In this part of the series, I’ll cover how to set the standard format for new documents, the process of fixing content that comes in a jumble in formatting, and how to set the default or standard format for new documents in Scrivener projects.

Setting the Standard Format for New Documents

Let’s begin with how to set the standard formatting for new documents in Scrivener, projects you are just starting. I’ll cover the process for Windows machines. It might be slightly different for Mac. (more…)

NaNoWriMo Novel Template for Scrivener

We’ve several members prepping for NaNoWriMo this year, the annual National Novel Writing Month where writers commit to write 50,000 words in 30 days through the month of November. We’ve put together “It’s NaNoWriMo Time: How To, Tips, Techniques, and Survival Advice” to help you as well.

For those using Scrivener to write and track their daily targets of 1,667 words, Scrivener is not only offered for 20% off during NaNoWriMo, but they also have a NaNoWriMo Novel Template to help you keep track of your progress.

Download and install the free (or paid) version of Scrivener. You will find all the information including tutorials and the template file on their Scrivener NaNoWriMo 2015 Offers web page.

NaNoWriMo Novel Template Setup.To install the NaNoWriMo Novel Template:

  1. Scroll to the bottom of the 2015 offers web page and look for the title The NaNoWriMo Novel Template
  2. Click or right click and save the ZIP file for the version of Scrivener you are using (Mac or Windows)
  3. Extract the scrivtemplate file to the directory where Scrivener is installed and the subdirectory called ProjectTemplates.
    • The location on your computer is typically C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Local\Scrivener\ProjectTemplates
  4. Open Scrivener and go to File > New Project
  5. Switch to the Fiction Templates
  6. Look for a template titled NaNoWriMo Novel Template and select it
  7. Type in a file name such as “My November 2015 Novel Draft” and choose the folder in which to store the files within your Documents folder
  8. Click Create
  9. The first document you will see contains all the instructions you need to understand how to use the template during NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo Novel Template Instructions.

To get started on November 1, go to Project > Project Targets and drag that pop-up window to a location where it doesn’t interfere with your writing. Start writing, and glance over after 45 minutes or so to see how you are doing. (more…)