Cool Tools

I recently purchased a new-to-me iBook off eBay.  The primary purpose was so I could use Scrivener , a powerful novel-writing program.

My other motivation for buying the iBook was wanting something I could write on comfortably.

I had lots of computer things on which I could type before:

2 desktop computer systems
2 Asus EeePCs (7 inch screens)
3 AlphaSmart Keyboards

I love the little EeePCs, but eventually had to admit that the keyboard is simply too small for me to use comfortably.

I don't mind the desktops too much, but they are fixed in space (and a precious commodity in our home of net-savvy people).

The AlphaSmarts are ultimately portable and battery life is measured in weeks rather than hours - particularly important for really long plane flights.  The keyboard is adequate, but not pleasurable.

I would never have purchased a laptop merely to have a more pleasurable portable keyboard experience.  But since I couldn't have Scrivener on any platform other than a Mac with OS X 10.4 or later, I "needed" a Mac.

This particular Mac is an iBook G3 900 MHz machine with wireless, a 40 GB hard drive, and a 12.1" screen.  It's delightfully intuitive.  Now that I've downloaded Scrivener and the Flip4Mac WMV player, I had everything I need to import my writing and upload my audio files for transcription, as necessary.

I already have been able to import and organize bits and pieces that have languished for months (Sept 2008 and December 2008 for my "Children of Heaven" (COH) and "Pearl of Alba" (POA) novel projects, respectively).

With my POA manuscript, I experimented with dictating scenes, planning to transcribe the audio files and then organize the transcriptions into a first draft.  I found myself with a backlog of audio files to transcribe at the end. Once I had transcribed the files, I had several hundred interspersed snippets of text and that's where I left POA in December 2008.

The tangled mass of snippets that seemed overwhelming without Scrivener now seems entirely manageable and I'm energized to move forward.  Hooray!

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