Posted in tech

Notes on a Tablet Addiction

It’s around seven years since I bought my first tablet. I didn’t really care what it could do, all I knew was I could hold a Star Trek Next Generation PADD in my hands, for real. The future had arrived! Since that momentous day I’ve had something of a love/hate relationship with these devices. I’ve lost count of how many I have had; more than a dozen I would think. Most have had their good points and their bad points. I’m still looking for the perfect one though, and they are still falling short. The first one I had was…

Posted in Scrivener, writing

Using Scrivener’s Name Generator Tool

Scrivener has a ton of features hidden away in those menus and many of them remain unnoticed by even the most addicted Scrivener users. One useful tool that often gets overlooked is the name generator. This is a really handy thing when you are looking to name a character but it is also a way of inspiring new characters. Let’s dive in to it then. Go to the Edit menu and select “Writing Tools”. You will see a sub-menu pop up, and there, right at the bottom, is “Name Generator…”. Right away you can see it has generated a bunch…

Posted in writing

Need or Want? Which Is Best For Writers?

They say necessity is the mother of invention. If you need to write to make a living and pay your bills do you find it easier than if you are financially secure and write because you want to? Which drives creativity better, need or want? Some people, and I count myself among them, don’t operate too well under pressure. Looming deadlines and loud managers are not for me. I need the shackles off in order to create. I write because I want to. I do it for the love. But all that is about to change, and in future I…

Posted in tech, writing

What’s The Best Way To Capture Your Ideas?

Note-taking for me has been something of a thorny issue for many years. I’m always on the lookout for a quick and easy way to capture my thoughts when I’m out and about and away from my computer. I have tried more or less everything but after many years of struggle I have finally found the best solution, for me at least.   Tablets and Smartphones I have been through a ton of these devices, from a Nexus 7 and iPad Mini to an iPod Touch and a Samsung Galaxy phone. I have tried them with their own notes apps,…

Posted in writing

There, their, they’re! Watch Out For Those Pesky Confusables…

It is little wonder people learning English get confused with words that sound the same. It can even catch out those of us who have been speaking the language for fifty years! Recently, Graham Norton questioned the wisdom of naming a film “Our Souls In The Night”. Whilst this quirk of our language may afford ample comic opportunities it can be a bit of a nightmare for writers. You can’t rely on grammar checkers to save your blushes either. Putting your faith in those is as foolhardy as putting your faith in a satnav. “Your” is a another good example…

Posted in Scrivener, tech, writing

Distraction-free Writing? Try Going Old School!

Since I started using Scrivener for my novels I can’t imagine life without it. I almost live in it. But as indispensable as it is, it does have one major drawback — it shares my laptop with a browser. Even though I use the wonderful composition mode, it doesn’t quite make Scrivener distraction free. It isn’t Scrivener’s fault of course, the same applies to Word or ZenWriter or whatever software you use. I’ll just be getting into the zone, half way through some wonderful dialogue, when a little warble grabs my attention. Someone has tweeted! Or it will be a…