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Technology - What do you use?


Earlier I said dictation software probably wouldn't be worth it. I'm revising my opinion - or at least open to the idea that I could be wrong. I recently purchased a new phone, a Droid X. It has built-in voice recognition software, and it works like a CHARM. Seriously, even two years ago voice recognition was crappy. Now this thing comes along and can perfectly parse the sentence "All I want is a proper cup of coffee made in a proper copper coffee pot" (and lots of other tests I ran it through) with some background noise.

I am impressed.

Interesting. I think best when I'm walking and can't stop to write, and have often considered getting a little handheld tape recorder or something to take notes, but if you dictate passages about talking to dragons while walking along people think you're nuts.

Personally everything starts off on pen and paper, whether it is in a notebook or is just loose-leaf is another matter. Then actual text gets transferred to yWriter 5 and notes on worldbuilding/characters/anything else related to the story gets inputted into a program called Tiddlywiki, its basically a wiki that is saved on your computer. I like it because you can link related topics. I highly suggest it for organizational purposes.

I just looked that up. I'm using this thing from now on!
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I just use Word. When I'm not at home, I use my LJ account and set it to private, and copy it over later. If I have neither PC nor internet, I use pen and paper - whatever paper I have with me. Generally that's my wire-bound notebook, but sometimes it's loose leaf lined paper or the back of a reciept or an envelope or a napkin (you get the idea).


True that. I do a lot of theatre, and running my lines as I walk around town gets me a lot of strange looks.

You should wait for someone to give you a strange look, then turn and address your next line directly to them as dramatically as possible.


I love the technical stuff surrounding writing. All the programs that are available. I've used yWriter, I purchased Scrivener when I got a Mac and I actually was given Liquid Story Binder XE when I did som translation for it.
My preferences for these programs has changed over the years, but now I find myself working more and more with LSBXE.
Many find it harder to jump into, probably because they want to use all functions in it. Obviously you'll probably never will.
But as someone said before: better to get it written than worry about the bells and whistles of different programs.


Currently I'm mostly writing poetry and I find for me it works best to write the initial version, notes, drafts, etc. in my journal and then edit as I type in to my computer -- MS Word or OpenOffice


In no small part due to my raging nerd-on for open source software, I use OpenOffice and not much else for my writing these days. I get notes down on paper first (I tend to keep a notepad handy at all times) then I extrapolate on them further when I get them into digital format.

For my worldbuilding, I've taken to using this program called WikidPad, which basically allows you to construct your own wiki on your computer. It can be found on this website: WikidPad - wiki notebook for windows

It's actually enormously useful, if a little confusing if you're not sure what you're doing. I got the hang of it quickly enough. :D


I take a notepad everywhere I go. I am a big fan of the Inspiration software. It makes creating outlines and concept maps (cluster maps) incredibly fast and simple. Then I go to my magnet board--an aproximate six by three foot piece of sheet metal nailed to my office wall--and spend some time randomly walking in and out and scribbling up ideas to stick, and making pretty patterns, and eventually ending up with a approximate outline with important features mapped. Then I further work in notebooks, sketching scenes before I write them. Then I move on to Word.
We have so many different ways of writing these days. Some choose to stick to paper (and then what KIND of paper, and pen? Moleskines? Waterfords?) or typewriters for that authentic feel. There's desktop computers, laptops, alphasmarts, iPads...

And then there's the programs. Oh, the programs! Word, OpenOffice, Pages, Scrivener, Celtx, Write or Die, Storyist, My Writing Nook, iWriter, Manuscript, Chapters, Google Documents...

And then there's voice recognition software, like Dragon Dictation, for those who've written their joints away into the scary depths of RSI. Like myself, last November. DOn't try to write 50,000 words in a week, you will suffer for it after.

Some say they like to combine a few. They'll use a notebook for notes, a program for organising maps/storylines/characters/etc and then a program for writing the novel. And then sites like EditMinion and Wordle to start editing, to find weak words or words used too often. And then maybe a few other programs and tricks and tips.

So I'm here to ask you, what do you use? Do you use notepad/word/open office and simply WRITE, or do you have a collection of programs, reference books and sites that assist you every stop of the way?
Technology provides boundless opportunties for writers to improve writing. But the technology of the writer depends on the stuff he/she is having. But still my preferences are notebooks.


I use a laptop. And for a program I use PageFour for allll my writing, including just journal writing, and storing important information. It's extremely handy for being extremely organized. I can organize different information, or parts of my story very easily, in a way that I want, and it's the only program I've found that caters to that need of mine. :)


I simply use Microsoft office when sitting down to write the story. I'm looking for another way, though, one where it'll block out everything except the text so I can fully concentrait on just writing, something darker so I won't light up the whole apartment at night with my laptop screen, even if the lighting is set on low.

But when it comes to notes, I use whatever paper I can get my hands on. Usually, I am always prepared with notebooks of various sizes and types, but my favorite type of paper is loose-leaf, preferably college-ruled, though I have finally allowed myself to use wide ruled (so long as I squeeze in twice as much writing). I love using the cheapo pens, the ones where you can get 8-10 for a dollar at walmart. I take an obscene amount of pleasure watching the ink run out and the pen finally die. My main colors are black mostly and then blue, but I keep red and green for more important 'notice me!' colors. Then, there's that little notebook and pen I keep by my bed, what I use far too often at night. In the end, all the little bits of paper and sheets covered in notes have to be sorted, tossed (shredded first), and then reorganized.