#ROW80 Checkin – Altered Software, Eureka Moment

A couple of days ago I wrote up a long morbid ROW80 post, about how I’d come to think too much, about how all my information overloads from all the writing advice out there had seen me lose – for the first time ever – my love and passion for my WIP.

It was one of those “getting-it-off-chest” posts – the kind that take an hour or so to write out, edit, and then are best left to sit. And then when I re-read it, of course, I didn’t any longer need to actually go public with it. Trashcan, do your job.

That didn’t resolve my lack of drive on the WIP however. But something kismettly accidental did.

Instead, I turned to something that I love to do. For others, it might be a bit of carpentry, taking a walk down the beach, inventing the next great toaster that makes your bread burn in the pattern of Yoda or R2D2 (I’d seriously buy that, btw). For me, it’s software.

I gave in, and started looking at importing in all my WIP into my new Windows Scrivener program.

Several hours later, I was cursing my purchase of the software. Literature and Latte’s Scrivener program has long been one of the most recommended programs for writers on their Apple Macs. It took over a year, however, for the Windows version to be released from beta, and understandably it isn’t as feature rich as its counterpart. And it still has a few bugs – being a software tester of old, I was destined to want to use exactly the functions in the software that actually hid those odd bugs. And I met that destiny like a smack on the head.

Just as I was contemplating giving up on the software, and perhaps on my novel itself (crazy ideas happen when facing hours of mispent time), I decided it wouldn’t beat me. Eventually, I created a template which didn’t rely on merged cells or look that great, but it worked.

So began the hard slog of copying over all the characters, settings and research notes. I also copied over my first scene, then had to leave the job for the day.

Overnight I had some difficulty sleeping, but during one of those hazy restless periods, a new beginning for my novel jumped into my head. I’ve been worried over the lack of tension from the start for as long as I’ve had my WIP going. It’s a thriller, afterall. But the start was just plain wrong. I kept promising myself that I would come back to it once everything else was written out. But something was just so wrong with the whole thing because of it.

Now I have that new beginning, even a good first line. And the whole thing brings in the suspense, and the theme to the novel also. It changes the whole course of the novel, it has also changed my passion for it. I’m stoked.

Playing with the software – playing around with all the research notes, the images I’d collected, and reading that first page of the first scene – I really only browsed through them, but it was enough to alter my software and alter my course.

After another day, I now have the full WIP draft in my new software, and in the process have managed to rewrite every scene, plus add that new beginning.

Progress report – I’ve added 3380 words to my WIP. #amwriting.

2 thoughts on “#ROW80 Checkin – Altered Software, Eureka Moment

  1. Glad it all turned out okay. I love the Scriv for Mac but I’m not a huge fan of it on Windows. I hope you can find the passion you once had.

    1. Mmmm, heard fantastic things about the MAC version, but I’m chugging along on Windows. I used to have a lot of love for Liquid Story Binder, which is really feature-rich. WriteWay is good too, but doesn’t do in-text links. Whatever the software, there’s always something missing in it, and I’m sure it’s that way for most writers.

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