Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Software & Books: Scrivener & Sellers

Here's the software I mentioned last night at our Tim Horton's conference:
  • Scrivener, the first writing software I've come across that actually complements the way I work, rather than forcing me to fit into its paradigm. (It's native to the Mac, but apparently they have a windows beta available; you'll need to hunt around for the download.)

  • Aeon Timeline, the only timeline tool I've discovered that does what I need it to do. It's a beta that is only available for the Mac.

And here are the books I mentioned:

Page after Page and Chapter after Chapter by Heather Sellers.

Some nuggets:
  • To create a writing life, you will need to fall in love — deeply, seductively, passionately — with your writing life. (Page, 27)

  • Anxiety is part of the force that makes us create. (page, 80)

  • The secret to writing a book: Don't miss a day. (Page, 87)

  • Dare to Suck (Page, 109)

  • You have to allow the book to wrap itself around you. All the time. Everywhere you go. Your mind needs to be turning it over, chewing it, stirring it, working it. All the time, in the back of your mind. (Chapter, 55)

  • The best way to learn to write a book is to write one. (Chapter, 109)

  • The book is your teacher. It shows you, productively, a tiny bit at a time, what to focus on learning next. Writing a book is like taking a perfect class on how to write a book. (Chapter, 109)

  • You're stuck because you haven't been writing, not writing because you're stuck. (Chapter, 170)

Reading them, they're like the books I would have written myself about the creative writing process once I emerged into the other side. I feel like she trod ahead of me on the same path I'm on, which gives me some hope that I can actually complete my novel.

If you're looking for books on the writing process instead of the technical aspects of story and novel construction, I highly recommend these. They fill an important gap on our writing-books shelf.

And if you don't know the book Page Fright, I also recommend it as a veritable encyclopedia of the writing experience through the ages, from the birth of ink and paper to the outlandish rituals great writers devise for themselves to overcome their page fright.


1 comment:

  1. Those are some intriguing nuggets from those two Heather Sellers books. I'll put them on my reading list.