Storytime Three Way

You can get your mind out of the gutter, because you’re not reading smut here today–that’s next Wednesday, because we know we need a little something to get us through the middle of the work week.  No, today I’m going to show off, because I’m in the mood, you know?

Talking about the editing and formatting process of Her Demonic Majesty, I’ve talked up how I’m using Scrivener, and in yesterday’s post I discussed how I was using all three views to find a problem, flipping from the Cork Board  to Outline to Scrivener views.

I understand, though, that a lot of people I know are visual, and they just can’t get their minds to see something they don’t know.  I make shit up in my head all the time, but I have known a few people who don’t see what I’m seeing when I describe what’s in my mind.  Sometimes I have to draw a floor plan–not that I mind, ’cause something even I need that.

Lets look at the story, and see how it presents itself to me.Part One Corkboard

First, I have Part One of Demonic Majesty up on the cork board.  I use the cork board a lot:  this is usually how I plot out a story, with each text card representing a chapter.  I set up my chapter numbers, enter my metadata, set up when the scene is happening–I’ve done this for a number of stories–and then I define what each part is, and the status of each section.  The little bit of color in the upper right hand corner tells me what the section is, and I have the status plastered across the the card itself.

As you can see, I have one “Novel Part”, which is the Part One title card, two chapters are “Formatted”, and the remainder of the part is “Done”.  Sure, I know this, but when I’m back into a story I haven’t played with in six months, I might need a little mental refreshing.

Every little bit helps, right?Part One Outline

Now we roll over to the Outline, which is something I’ve only played with and not used much until this point.  There are two things I like about this display, however.  One, you see the story in a top-to-bottom representation, so if you have your metadata set up correctly, it should be easier to see if your chapters are following you plot.  Also, if you need to insert a chapter, it’s a bit easier to see where it should go.

There’s another nice feature in this mode:  you can customize your metadata.  Here, I’m showing my total word count, and that is being displayed for not only each chapters, but each part.  I knew Part Two was big, but I didn’t realize the words differences between Part One and the other novel parts.

The other thing I can view here is a word count goal, and how much of that goal I’ve completed.  This can be a good thing for someone who’s broken their story into scenes, and they’re trying to reach specific word counts.  Pull up the Outline and you’ll see where you’re at in seconds.

Now, onto the last . . .Part One Scrivener

The Scrivener view gives you the whole story in one big bunch.  In this picture I’m showing the beginning of my novel:  the end of the Table of Contents, the blank space that is the folder for Part One, the Part One title card, and Chapter One.  I used this mode to do group searches for words and phrases, so I could change them all somewhat quickly.

If you look closely you’ll see I’m showing the hidden characters, so I can see carriage returns and spaces between words.  It was by staring at the story in this format that I realized that having a few returns before “Part One” was the thing that was screwing up my page break on a compile of the story to Word.  Now it’s much better.

That’s my journey up to now.  I may actually run this story through the Smashwords meat grinder in a few weeks, and see what pops out.  If it comes out clean, then I can upload the cover, and send the same document up to Kindle Direct.

It’s so close, I can almost smell it.

Which is a neat trick, you have to admit.