Questions tagged [tools]

Tools include any physical devices or artifacts used in the writing process, as well as software tools (which should additionally include the Software tag). For questions regarding process, methodology, or organization, use the Technique tag.

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12
votes
4answers
5k views

Are there tools that can aid an author in writing a branching storyline?

I would like to know whether there are any tools that would help an author write a branching storyline. Usecases may for example be: campaigns for Pen and Paper games visual novels Choose Your Own ...
22
votes
11answers
40k views

Software for developing and organizing characters

I'm looking for a software that helps me develop and organize the characters for my novel. What I want: something like a filesystem, with a file for each character it should have or allow me to ...
22
votes
8answers
479 views

Are there any places to have community story development?

Are there any places or ways a group (general public or individually invited) of people can individually contribute to a communally developed story? For example, a website or collaboration tool (...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Where can I find resources about writing “Choose your own adventure”-style books?

I have read/played a couple of "Choose your own adventure"-style book and am interested in the process of creating one. Where can I find (preferrably free) online resources, such as How-To-Write or ...
16
votes
8answers
3k views

Software to draw plot structure charts

When I plot my own novels or analyze other works to understand their structure, I like to visualize the dynamic of the storyline(s) in a diagram. Usually I draw this by hand. A first version of such ...
4
votes
7answers
1k views

Creating and keeping track of characters

I admit to finding this an insurmountable task. My novel has dozens of characters. My first problem wasn't keeping track of them, but creating them. Modern Day: My 20th century characters were ...
39
votes
12answers
9k views

Is there a need for better software for writers?

Software developers don't ever work in text editors, instead they use IDEs (integrated development environments) full of code assistance tools, etc. Why don't writers use similarly advanced writing ...
2
votes
7answers
2k views

Best Grammar checking software

What is best the grammar checking software to check the grammar errors in novels and screenplays?
6
votes
4answers
473 views

How can I manage screen shots and other graphics for maintenance?

Our ~1500-page documentation set contains numerous screen shots and related graphics (schematics, flow diagrams, etc). Sometimes the user interface changes and we have to update all the affected ...
5
votes
3answers
176 views

How can we make reviewing HTML documentation easier?

Summary: I'm looking for a way for reviewers to comment collaboratively as close to "inline" as possible on a large HTML project. The problem in detail I work on a team that documents a ...
0
votes
2answers
148 views

Do light conditions affect writing? [closed]

I've started to notice that I do a lot more writing at night, with my lights off. When I write with a light on, I get a slight migraine, and I'm not sure why. So do different lighting conditions ...
21
votes
5answers
9k views

emacs for creative writing

Does anyone know a good emacs configuration for creative writing? I'd be looking for the ability to write, edit, and export to libre office or word (so the less technical people get edit/view). I'm ...
23
votes
10answers
10k views

Tools for science-based world building?

I tend to lean towards science-fiction and fantasy, so world building matters a lot to me. A while ago, there was a question which asked how to go about organizing your universe, which was interesting,...
20
votes
5answers
5k views

What's the best version control system for a book writer?

I'm a writer—no programming, only prose in text files, mostly in Emacs org-mode, some in markdown-mode. I want to implement a version control system for my writing projects. I work with two types of ...
8
votes
6answers
2k views

What is a good tool for organizing story notes?

I'm working on a fantasy series and have been keeping a Word document full of backstory, character/location information, and other world-building elements. At 160+ pages, it's reached the point where ...
20
votes
6answers
4k views

Keeping track of multiple plot lines

How do you track several plot lines woven together? I usually run 2 or 3 plot-lines in parallel, so I detail those plots each in a separate document. But as the book goes on, it is sometimes ...
18
votes
7answers
880 views

How do you track submissions to publishers/markets?

What tools (software or otherwise) or procedures do you use to track the progress of submissions to publishers or other markets? How do you reduce the chance of accidentally (and embarrassingly) ...
8
votes
8answers
2k views

Software for collaborative writing for a small team

I'm working on a writing project with a friend, and we're looking for some kind of (preferably cloud-based) project management and version control software so each of us can see how far the other has ...
3
votes
6answers
679 views

Are there any free programs for screen writers

Screenwriting has a very strict format that Microsoft Word cannot fully match. Are there any good screenwriting word processors out there that are free?
10
votes
14answers
2k views

Is the iPad a convenient medium for writing work?

Does anyone here write on an iPad at all? The iPad 2G is due this summer and I have waited since March 2010 already, so I am planning to purchase one. However, I don't really need an iPad at all; ...
16
votes
7answers
502 views

Should I start writing on paper first or start directly on the computer?

If I have an excellent idea for a story, would it be wiser to write on paper first or start directly on the computer? There are many different reasons for beginning stories on paper as well as on the ...
11
votes
3answers
313 views

How do you track dependencies for your co-authors?

I and one or more co-authors, sometimes geographically distributed, are working on a set of related documents. Sometimes I will make a change in my part that affects someone else's part; this could ...
7
votes
4answers
572 views

Searching for character relation map software

I've started working on a project and wanted to keep all my characters and their relationships well organised. I'm already using TiddlyWiki to archive all the ideas about the world and its ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Word Clouds and Phrase Clouds

I'm familiar with word clouds (or tag clouds) as used on blogs or on sites like Delicious. It seems to me that a tool similar to that could be of use to writers like me, who don't have an editor, when ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Which edition of Strunk & White's The Elements of Style?

I'm interesting in picking up a copy of Strunk & White's The Elements of Style. Unfortunately I'm a little overwhelmed by the minor variations. Amazon lists 12 different paperback formats, plus a ...
4
votes
1answer
97 views

How can we make images with (necessary) text more translatable mechanically?

Our documentation set includes some diagrams, such as entity relationship diagrams and flowcharts, where text is integral and cannot reasonably be handled in callouts. Our documentation is translated ...
3
votes
3answers
335 views

What's a good program for tracking submissions?

What's a good program or technique for tracking submissions? I need something that'll keep track of who I've submitted to, when, if they've replied, and preferably tell me how long it's been out. Any ...
3
votes
5answers
4k views

What are the tool choices for producing technical documentation in PDF and web site ready HTML?

My company currently maintains our technical documentation (User's Guide) in Google Docs. With each release I produce a PDF that we host on our website. Here are the features of Google Docs that work ...
9
votes
3answers
519 views

I'm an editor who generally uses Word to communicate changes with my authors. Is Adobe's InCopy better for this task?

For all of my editing work I'm currently using Microsoft Word. But I've heard a bit about Adobe's InCopy being good for editing and publishing. Is it really better? What makes it better than Word?
7
votes
1answer
4k views

How to work with in-text markup for figures and captions in Scrivener?

I like the writing tool Scrivener because of the organisation tools like the corkboard and the no-frills full screen mode. I'm starting out my thesis using the Windows trial and intending to buy if I ...
7
votes
1answer
126 views

What tool will help me track sentences and paragraphs in resumes and cover letters so I can use this database to tailor new ones?

I'm tailoring my resume over and over to highlight my experiences that best fit the needs of employers as described in their job listings. Not to overstate the obvious, but I do this by choosing ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Can Articy Draft be used to write a book?

I recently bought Articy Draft to catalog my writing endeavours. It seems good for writing scripts, but what about writing a book? Reference: http://www.nevigo.com/en/articydraft/overview/ I'm ...
4
votes
3answers
304 views

How to identify paper which will blot fountain pen ink?

These days, with fewer people using a fountain pen to write, many notebooks/paper you find blotting the ink. If I am at a store and contemplating to buy a notebook or writing/printing paper, how can ...
3
votes
1answer
124 views

Search and replace words across whole project?

I'm still new to articy:draft and I want to know if it's possible to search and replace words across the whole project. I know searching is possible, but I can't find the replace function, if it's ...