The Novel, or Scrivener, or Stay Tuned…

In an attempt to post on a more regular basis, I am going to try to start posting more about my novel in progress. This is in part inspired by my friend, and fellow Hiram Grange author, Richard Wright, who has been posting regularly about his foray into spending a year on writing and publishing books.

I have made some some rather drastic changes lately in regards to writing. For the past several years, I had always written using Word on a PC with a rather largish monitor and a massive IKEA desk that could have had its own zip code. (I cringe at the thought of doing anything longhand because I have the maniacal scrawl of an epileptic palsied old man on a carousel horse; all 3s in penmanship since first grade.) I did have an old laptop on which I occasionally pecked away, but I never wrote much of note on it (except “Bruise for Bruise”, which was written during lunch periods at an older job).

I have now switched to using Scrivener on a Macbook Pro. It is an exhilarating leap, to say the least.

I do not write in a straight line. I do not write in any kind of temporal order. I write in bits and pieces, the barest of coherent fragments that relate to the vague Platonic “novel” or “story” that exists in my head, and then I dutifully stitch the fragments together into a lumbering, breathing whole that I can sell for vast piles of gold (or at least that is the intent.) There are megabytes of scraps and fragments on multiple drives, some of it brilliant, some of it dross.

Let’s just say that importing my works in progress into Scrivener has been an adventure.

But now that these fledgling chapters are firmly ensconced inside the Scrivener womb (if you will), I have a bird’s eye view over my writing that I have never had before. For example, today I realized that the two novels I was working on sporadically are actually parts of the same novel. Huzzah! The word count jumped from 12000 to 25000 with the few clicks of a casual import. And I now also know that all the chapter titles in Part II will be in French, because I am a pretentious twat. I suffer for my art.

I am still a newbie when it comes to Scrivener, but I think it is fair to say that I am now a devout convert. I can see it has a lot of potential for my style of writing (I am a flibbertigibbet). I have barely scratched the surface of what it is capable of, but I am thrilled with it so far.

So, as it stands now the novel is 25,000 words of a projected 100,000. It will be broken into five parts. The working title is The Bitter Taste of the World Snake’s Tail. 

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