OneNote goes free for Windows… and on Mac

Microsoft's OneNote is one of my favourite pieces of software, a great way for storing information, outlines and general ideas. The main drawbacks: it only worked on Windows, not Macs, though there are clients for Android, ioS and Windows Phone.…

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Working up an outline in OneNote

As I’m sure has become clear around here over the years my working methods duck and weave with every new book. I’m currently trying the outlining-as-movie-script technique I wrote about recently.

I like it but it needs a bit refining. Having faffed around and thought a bit the process should, I feel, work in this order (for me, of course, none of this may work for you at all).

  1. Treatment — in other words a simple text description of what happens in each scene. Really this is a basic outline setting down place, time and an event or thread. It’s not as long as a movie treatment. It contains no detail, quite deliberately because the creative part of developing character, drama and narrative happens in…
  2. The script outline. Again — read here to understand what I mean by this.
  3. The novel draft, written out of the script outline.
  4. If I hope this is a working script draft, a revise of that set against the new, fuller details of the story contained in the novel draft.


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Going on a software detox diet

A comment yesterday reminded me what a software junkie I used to be. Had I tried TextExpander instead of setting up auto-correct in Word? Of course. And Typinator. And probably lots else besides.

I started using computers in the Eighties, when most of them were as inadequate as they were expensive. True they could do things that nothing else was capable of. But there were always holes, glitches, things you needed that weren’t there out of the box.

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Making OneNote and Word partners in writing

Word isn't Scrivener and never will be. One important function it's missing is the ability to tag, label and comprehensively annotate individual elements of a manuscript in fine detail. As we've discussed before you can make margin comments – and…

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