Once you’ve made the decisionthat you are now into serious writing, it is no longer a hobby. Now it’s an activity leading to a publishable short story or novel, so it’s time to spend out on a few essentials that will make your life easier. I promise you that the following are not luxuries, but tools that will make your writing tasks smoother, more manageable and more pleasurable.
WRITING PLANScrivener software organizes your writing activities. Your material is sorted, your research is reliably and quickly on hand, Scrivener helps you create plots and outlines.
Current costs around $45 and there isn’t space to describe all the features and functions of this fantastic software.
Forget writing from A-Z on one document. Scrivener encourages you to write in scenes, sections, chapters, ideas, dialogues, time frames, or whatever takes your fancy.
Everything is updated and saved automatically. You can set yourself targets and see your progress. Slip easily between looking at your notes, the outline, research, all beautifully laid out.
Quickly learn how with the tutorials, or buy this book : Scrivener Essentials. Author Karen Prince explains things clearly and succinctly: a big contrast to Scrivener for Dummies.
When you’ve finished the last chapter and have compiled the various sections into one book, Scrivener formats it for you: paperback, ebook or mobi. This in itself is a huge help.
EDIT AND REVIEWPro-writing aid This comprehensive editor surveys your grammar, writing style, over-use of words, and lots more. Paying attention to its advice will make you a better writer as you progress with your book. If you buy Premium, you can submit large documents for analysis.
NOTIFY OTHERSCanva You may want an illustration in your book, or want to blog about it or post on Facebook. Canva allows you to painlessly compose visual images from its bank and add text It’s quick, and free too. (Paid version has extra images)
FORMAT AND PRODUCEVellum Above all, when you’re sure your book is ready, avoid hours and days trying to format your book for the different platforms. Buy a lifetime licence for Vellum and have beautifully laid out books with no stress. There are a number of options for appearance of text. It’s really easy to use. I’ve written straight onto it on occasion, where I knew I wouldn’t be planning or reorganising much. Editing is quick: your preview is on the right, your input on the left. See an error, fix it right away.
SEEK PROFESSIONAL ADVICE on all aspects of self publishing: Alliance of Independent Authors. £75 p.a. and continuous access to a range of successful authors, editors, self-publishers and their articles, webinars, facebook group and books.
SO NOW YOU’RE READY TO WRITE SERIOUSLY. Get going, good luck!