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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6
votes
1answer
507 views

Good screenwriting-specific collaboration software

My brother and I want to work on a screenplay together and are looking for a true real-time collaboration software that is also secure. Plotbot shows edits by all parties in real-time, but you have ...
12
votes
1answer
659 views

Do publishers use LaTeX to produce books for the blind?

What software tools do publishers use to produce books for the blind, i.e. containing embossed Braille? Is LaTeX one of them? There is a braille LaTeX package, which can be used to print Braille, but ...
2
votes
3answers
691 views

Alternative to mindmap software

I would like some alternatives to using a mindmap to organize my thoughts while writing. Mindmapping is good, don't get me wrong, but it doesn't preserve the sequence/order, therefore it makes things ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Does excessive use of prepositions make writing unclear?

This site's writing reports claim that excessive use of prepositions makes writing unclear. For example: "The principle of keeping nouns and verbs as close to each other as possible for the benefit ...
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 ...
3
votes
4answers
607 views

What non-WYSIWYG, non-proprietary alternatives to (La)TeX exist for the humanities, journalism, and other non-technical disciplines?

I see all over the web that LaTeX specializes in correct presentation of mathematical formulas, used widely in science, engineering, math, and other highly technical fields. I would like to have ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Scrivener: Editing the source files

I'm away from the house but I have my .scriv file on cloud storage. My question is, can I get to a particular chapter in my story and make some quick edits? Will changing these files break the ...
4
votes
3answers
143 views

tools for writing scripts

It has been a long time since I last tried to write a play, and I hated it, not the play (which became a short story), but writing one. The word processors made working with script layout a pain, and ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I prevent, or work around, unfortunate hyphenation in critical words?

In technical documentation, sometimes the tool's automatic hyphenation makes a bad break in the middle of a term, like the name of an environment variable or function. In these cases I would rather ...
4
votes
2answers
259 views

Visualizing multiple word-based changes among many text files

I've written a piece of fiction with GitHub, which means I have access to many version of my writing. I'm curious to see how my writing adapted over time. Did I keep eliminating then re-adding a word? ...
22
votes
11answers
44k 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 ...
4
votes
3answers
443 views

Concept map software that concentrates on ease of use?

...and scales well? I'm in the process of writing a text game / "Make your own adventure" novel, with a fairly convoluted, non-linear plot. Getting that plot under control has proven to be a rather ...
2
votes
1answer
910 views

Scrivener: marking multiple (non-adjacent) phrases in a manuscript with same footnote

How can I mark multiple different non-adjacent words and/or phrases with the same endnote marker and the same endnote text in Scrivener? For example: Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer ...
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 ...
5
votes
2answers
214 views

Looking for writer's platform

I'm looking for a platform (web app, saas application) to manage writers and articles for a large blog. I'm looking for the following features: I enter topics, writers can claim subjects and write ...
3
votes
3answers
333 views

Project management software using Google Drive

I am currently managing a project with writers, Content Reviewers, and Editors. The documents are stored on Google Drive. At the moment the process is very convoluted and is quickly becoming a bottle ...
3
votes
1answer
469 views

An (Collaborative) Online Outline

I'm writing a book – more as a hobby than anything else. As an amateur I often get lost regarding the extent I should include in the chapters. But the greatest problem for me is that I did not ...
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?
4
votes
1answer
4k views

Mashery vs. Apigee

I was wondering if anyone could lend some advice as to the pros and cons between using Mashery versus Apigee for documenting an API? I have do some evaluating and have about 2 weeks to come up with a ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

How do I create a book on iBookstore without having a Mac?

I use Linux, and I'd like to format a book for the iBookstore. When I go to signup to iTunes Connect to upload my books, it says: 3. Download iTunes Producer Download our delivery application, ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

How should we go from Stack Exchange Q/A to publishable PDF with the least hassle?

Over on another site we're talking about taking some of our content (on a particular theme) and re-packaging it as a printable PDF. (The primary use case is paper.) This wouldn't be a straight dump ...
6
votes
5answers
3k views

Does using version control system make backups unnecessary? [closed]

Suppose I use Git, Subversion or any other version control system for managing my writing. So my texts are preserved together with change history and if I accidentally delete something I can use ...
5
votes
6answers
849 views

Software to change American punctuation to British

My apologies if this is off topic. American and British writing have different punctuation styles. Is there any software that can change American style punctuation to British? I am referring to ...
21
votes
5answers
7k 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
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 ...
1
vote
5answers
1k views

Suggest any good text editor for Mac for writing in multiple languages

I have been using iBook author, for a time and the simple Mac TextEdit along with openOffice TextDocument. And I recently downloaded Evernote in expectation of more (but that's something else and not ...
12
votes
8answers
4k views

Very simple markup language for writing fiction

I'm using a plain text editor (Vim) to write a fiction piece (chapter book), and I'm wondering what markup languages others use for such a task? I'm looking for something exceedingly simple, it does ...
1
vote
1answer
824 views

APA citation style - capitalization of titles

I'm writing a paper, supposedly using APA citation style, and I've encountered the following conflict. On the one hand, the title of the work I cite is cited in all small letters, and only the first ...
9
votes
1answer
234 views

Tools for exploring and analysing document structure?

I'm currently writing a thesis. Just the introduction is 25 pages/8000 words. The whole document will probably be 70 pages or so. With a document this large, and on such a complex topic, it can be ...
0
votes
1answer
508 views

Tools or communities for word association?

Are there any tools or online communities that deal with word association? I'm looking for a resource where I could poll for common associations for a particular word. If you do know of such a tool ...
7
votes
1answer
5k 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
12k views

How to handle screenplay revisions in Final Draft?

I need to revise a screenplay in Final Draft, and I'm finding that the revision features in the program are poor. Are there any ways to introduce revision features in to Final Draft, similar to Track ...
18
votes
3answers
2k views

Is Scrivener involved in the editorial process, or is it strictly a writer's development tool?

Is there any reason that an editor should know how to use Scrivener? I generally see manuscripts after they're out of draft but before proofreading. (I'm an editor.) However, I see a lot of talk ...
11
votes
3answers
315 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 ...
5
votes
4answers
426 views

Best text procesor— keyboard focussed UI

I am a programmer by profession and am looking for good text processors to help me with my blog writing. Word (MS/OpenOffice) has felt too clunky, because of the interruptions (corrections,formatting ...
5
votes
2answers
512 views

Software for instructional book

I saw this question on software for fiction writers. I'm wondering if there is software out there for non-fiction/instructional/research writing? Seems like yWriter and Scrivener focus on organizing ...
5
votes
5answers
4k views

Any good side-by-side editor for script translation?

I am in the process of translating a script and am constantly struggling with the side-by-side vertical scrolling of the document. Does anyone know of an editor which is capable of "locking" two ...
5
votes
2answers
358 views

State of the art proof reading tools/methods

While my skills of expression are okay, being able to observe errors within my own writing is truly lacking. The only methods I've found to be of real use are long-time periods in between reviews, if ...
1
vote
2answers
723 views

Best dictaphone/transcription workflow?

I've decided that the best way for me to get my ideas on paper is to dictate them, because I find that typing/writing 'gets in the way' and prevents me from properly expressing my ideas as they arise. ...
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 ...
4
votes
4answers
387 views

Format + Editor for book writing

A friend of mine is going to write a book. Therefore he is looking for an easy WYSIWYG solution. First I recommended latex, but this would be a bit to hard to learn. A big part of the book is finished ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Cheap ways a young person can get paper books printed/bound from their manuscript? (Please incl sample costs)

Some budding authors (school aged young people) want to see their creative works in print, as books. I'm prepared to do some of the pubisher's tasks (eg, get some ISBN's for each book, if required; I'...
26
votes
8answers
8k views

Best tool to create ebooks?

What is a recommended tool for turning a completed manuscript (a Word document) into an ebook (specifically, an EPUB file or Kindle-compatible Mobipocket file)? I would prefer something that: ...
2
votes
1answer
428 views

Organizing text snippets for creating different variants of a document (customized for the reader)

I'm searching for a tool/strategy to do the following: I have a lot of text snippets (informations) which are available for creating a document in different variants. The document has a standard ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Any experience with Serenity Editor software?

Has anyone had any experience with Serenity Editor editing software? What's the difference between the Standard version or the Word add-in? What kind of results can it get? If nobody has used it, ...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

The importance of monitor size/distance for writing productivity?

I've been thinking today that my writing station's monitor screen set-up is much worse than I had previously thought, and can be partly blamed for productivity problems. I write on a 2004 laptop with ...
5
votes
1answer
162 views

What is the new Google Author markup?

What is the new Google Author markup, and how can I use it to build up a reputation as an online writer? How could it possibly work? Using self-declared information has been tried before and of ...
6
votes
4answers
489 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
77 views

Is there a way to improve Endnote record consistency?

I am required to use Endnote to manage citations. When I find an article, I am expected to create an Endnote record for it, and we have some internal guidelines as to which fields we consider ...
2
votes
4answers
263 views

Is there any tool which points out the common mistakes in a piece of writing?

It will point out mistakes like: Use of bad constructs. Use of repeated words. etc. (On a side note: if you happen to be a C programmer, I am looking for lint for writing).