Posted by Mark Withall: 2012-11-03

I’ve finally got time to actually write a blog post. We’re already just over two days in and I’m on target so far. I’ve written 4381 words at the time of writing this but I’m told there is a widget I can include on this site that will show live word counts. I shall investigate this later.

As this is the first proper NaNo post, and I am a nerd, I shall start by detailing the writing tools.

The majority of the writing will be done using Scrivener 2 for Mac. I bought this earlier in the year thanks to a 50% discount received for winning NaNoWriMo last year. My usage of the tool is fairly basic at this first-draft stage. I create a folder for each chapter (currently exotically title ‘Chapter 1’, ‘Chapter 2’, etc.) and I create a text file for each scene within each chapter. Scrivener has a nice feature of letting you see all the scenes in a chapter in one screen that you can scroll up and down, with nice scene break markers between each.

In addition to Scrivener, I am saving the scrivener file to my Dropbox folder, so that it is automatically synced to the Internet (and hence to anything else I open it with) every time I save the file. This way, if my laptop were to accidentally be run over by a tank or flushed down the toilet, I won’t lose the work so far.

The final, and probably somewhat less standard, tool that I’m using is git via the github user interface. This means that if I manage to badly corrupt the file in someway, or delete large parts unintentionally, I can just roll back to an earlier version of the novel without losing much.

I shall sign off for now. Next time I shall recount my approach to structuring novels to be written during NaNoWriMo, and maybe include some details of the story that I’m writing.