Where did February Go?

I turned around and discovered February is almost over. I’m not sure where it went. I had to change all of my passwords yesterday, that took much longer than necessary. Because of that, not all of the tools I usually have, are connected at the moment. It may take a few days to get everything back together. On a funny note, both of my girls are reading “smart” books.

What is a “smart” book?

Any book that requires you to make a list of words you don’t know and need to look up.

I admit, I’m really enjoying that fact. Honestly, I don’t know what many of them are. We are all learning something.

Daughter #1 is reading- The Legend Begins: Sherlock Holmes Death Cloud by Andrew Lane. This is part of the Young Sherlock Holmes set. There are two books by Lane with the same title! One is for YA (I think) and the other adults. I’m not sure.  Anyway, she loves it and is improving her vocabulary as well.

Daughter #2 is reading- All Creatures Great & Small by James Herriot. It’s a classic and I’ve never read it! I don’t care for animal books and this one is about an English veterinarian in Yorkshire. She’s really enjoying it and learning plenty of new medical words. Just this morning she was explaining to me about a cow giving birth. Not exactly what I want to hear about over breakfast, but you take what you can get.

I’m a happy mama.

On to Row80

Participate in the weekly Health/Fitness Challenge at church.  Goal this week attend two workout classes and one day on treadmill.  Total failure. Thankfully this is over and I can now go back to being happily lazy.

Read 4 books a month, roughly 1 book a week.  I’m still reading Crimson Claymore by Craig A. Price Jr. I just finished a children’s book, Cora and the Nurse Dragon by H.L. Burke. Great read.
-Edit book 2 in my mystery seriesNada! I’m tossing this goal for now.
-Work on self-publishing Book 1. This is my critique project. I have submitted the first 5 chapters. I plan on going through the critiques I have received to edit my WIP. Hopefully, that will start in March. I think I’ve let it sit enough. Maybe working on a little at a time will be better. I also have 2 full MS critiques to use as well. By the end, at least 10 people will have had eyes on it.
-Institute Meatless Monday. Nope. Cooking is chaotic at the moment. We’ve had school break, family visiting, and swim practice. Now we also have play rehearsals starting up. Dinners have quickly become whatever I can make…fast. Swimming ends in two weeks, I hope that our schedule will slow down enough to actually plan better meals.
-Keep up with the local Critique Group.  I have four pieces to read this round. I’m waiting a little closer to the meeting to read them.
-At some point I need to write a story I’ve plotted.  Goal this week is: 6,000 words. I am currently at 3,118 for this week. So I am on track. Writing this one is odd. This is my first time to actually write something in Scrivener. I’ve only had the program for a little over a year. Previously, I imported a document from Word into Scrivener. This time it’s all new and being written within the program. The problem I’m having is the way I have it set up, I only have the word count for that chapter not a total document word count. It’s no big deal, it’s just different.

I’ve also made the decision to make this a novella. I think that would be a better fit. I’m doing extra plotting as I go. Normally, I plot the whole thing out before hand. I did that to a point. I had a broad path I wanted the story to follow but I’m narrowing it down as I write. Each day I flesh out 3 or 4 chapters and then I start writing them. I may not write all of them that day, and that’s OK. On Scrivener you have the document you are writing and on the right hand side (option) you have a note card. The note card is where I type my plot ideas and any necessary info I need for that chapter. It works just like real plot note cards, except on the computer. I love this feature!

Edit/publish Mystic Brew.   Done!

How’s your week going?

-CK

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Scrivener

For our 15th anniversary, my husband bought me Scrivener. After it was installed, I just stared at the screen, unsure of what to do.  I completed the tutorial and looked at the massive manual and suddenly felt ill equipped for the task at hand. I have a love-hate relationship with technology. I love what it’s capable of, but hate learning new tech skills. I’m slow and my husband teases me, he’s a techo wizard. All I can do is remember the vile Com Pewter from the Piers Anthony novels.

I’ve had Scrivener for a month and I am slowly getting used to how it works. My version is for Windows and most of the reference materials are for the Mac version. Of course! At the moment I like it.

A few helpful references for those just starting out:

  • Scrivener for Dummies by Gwen Hernandez – this is mainly for Mac but is useful for Windows as well. The author offers classes for Scrivener on her website. I’m thinking about taking one later. If you have taken one, I’m interested in what you thought of the class. I use this book by working through the chapters and trying out what I read.
  • Here’s a handy cheat sheet with shortcuts. Very useful.
  • YouTube. Really, how did society function without YouTube? If you search for Scrivener you will hit dozens of tutorials, again most are for Mac. Time frame ranges from a short 7 minutes to over an hour. You can slim down the offerings by searching for a specific question about Scrivener.

There are also dozens if not hundreds of blog/sales reviews of Scrivener. It’s hard to tell which posts are by actual users and which are paid affiliates.

 

I have learned how to:

  • import a mauscript
  • divide the MS into chapters, still trying to figure out scenes
  • use the cork board for plotting
  • toyed with the reference folder

 

Problems I’ve had:

  • I backup everything. Trying to backup my Scrivener MS on a thumb drive was problematic and I still don’t have that mastered.  My techno wizard has instructed me to save on the laptop and then on a separate saving device in case the laptop is destroyed by an angry dragon. I think he may be calling me a dragon, but I’m not sure. So this glitch, mine or scrivener’s, is something I must overcome.

Like I said, I’ve only had it for a month. The more I use it the easier it will become. I hope.

Have you tried Scrivener? Any helpful tips?

CK