My Nanowriflow

This post was originally going to be a simple "how to" for syncing Scrivener files with Dropbox but since Literature and Latte (makers of Scrivener) already has a great guide to that, I figured I would explain the tools I've been using to write throughout Nanowrimo.

Multitasking like a cool person

Multitasking like a cool person

Scrivener: Headquarters

This is where all my writing winds up. Whether I start a new document on it or sync a text file from dropbox, eventually it will appear in the binder of my Nanowrimo project.

But you don't need Scrivener to write. It won't make you a better writer, though having good tools may make the process slightly easier. Scriveners customization options may also be a distraction to some users.

I like to think of Scrivener as my editing suite. I dump all the content I've created into it, and from there it's MUCH faster to move things around, make additional notes and categorize. I don't even delve too deep into those features, but it's great to have them at hand.

Scrivener's full screen mode is a great feature.

Scrivener's full screen mode is a great feature.

Byword: Away team

When I'm out in the world, I use a little app called Byword. Byword is an iOS app designed for just writing. It supports markdown, a kind of programming/formatting language, but besides that, it's just a good app for writing. The key features for me are:

  • Word count
  • Dropbox syncing
  • expanded keyboard (allows quick access to indentation/tab, etc)
  • Night mode (dark background, light text)

Paired with a bluetooth keyboard, it's adequate for busting out a few hundred words in a McDonald's over your lunch break.

WriteMonkey: For Windows

Because Scrivener is not completely equal between Windows and Mac, I've resorted to using this awesome, free, text editor when I'm sitting at my Windows computer. I love WriteMonkey because it is a super simple text editor that feels a lot like a desktop version of Byword. You can add a bunch of cool features by loading in plugins, a feature which costs a very reasonable amount if you want that added functionality.

Workflowy: For planning/plotting

Workflowy is bulleted lists on steroids. The layout is dead simple, and the usability is  pretty high. A lot of very smart people are able to make use of it to track projects and keep themselves organized.

It's probably not the best solution for mind-mapping, but if you like lists and nesting things and #hashtags, Workflowy is pretty powerful stuff.

That's it. A few text editors and Dropbox tying it all together.

How are you writing?