Paranormal Romance Author D.R. Grady Talks Scrivener & Dragons
Please make welcome debut author D.R. Grady. Today, she’s sharing more about her favorite organizational writing tool, Scrivener, and some more about her paranormal romance, The Dragon Chronicles: Learning.
D.R., please tell us more about the unique ways you use Scrivener.
Scrivener is a fabulous program that makes writing the story easier, because the program caters to various types of writers. If you’re a plotter, you have the ability to plot the entire manuscript in the program, before you ever start writing. There are index cards for the corkboard or the ability to write an extensive outline. If you’re a panster, just start writing. You can fill in information as you need.
Scrivener offers a typewriter mode, which means the page moves as you type so you can keep writing rather than having to take the time to scroll to see what you’re writing. You can enter Full Screen mode, in which you focus solely on the content you’re creating.
After you finish the first draft, there comes that next phase in the writing journey—edits. Scrivener makes edits a little easier as well. If you need to move a scene, it’s not difficult in Scrivener. Each scene has a label, so when it comes time to edit there’s no trouble finding scenes and moving them around. You can add them to an entirely different chapter or create a new one.
Switching the location of that scene is as easy as dragging and dropping it into the new location within the manuscript. In addition, if you take the time to fill out all the index cards (a synopsis of each scene) within the program, you can view them on a corkboard within Scrivener. This enables you to move the index cards around to determine the story flow, and the scenes consequently move within the manuscript. (Additional bonus: these cards also provide you with a rough synopsis when that time comes.)
To complete the editing process within Scrivener, there are options to find and replace, and check for overused words. A notepad allows you to jot down notes as you go so you can remember things you need for both the scene and the entire project. There is the option to check word definitions, and synonyms, as well as Wikipedia, dictionary, and thesaurus links. Sadly, Scrivener does not show fragments and grammatical errors at the moment, but it appears this feature is coming.
Scrivener is terrific for both writing and editing a novel. However, with self-publishing so prevalent in the publishing world, Scrivener has proven an invaluable tool for that as well. Scrivener makes formatting your manuscript for multiple sites possible. The most common self-publishing formats are pdf, epub, rtf, and html. Scrivener will produce a professional epub format for your manuscript. (Writer Tip: If you’re struggling with the final edits, turn it into an epub and edit on your phone or tablet. It’s a great way to see how the book will look to your readers and makes spotting mistakes easier.)
I’ve also used Scrivener to keep track of which editors and agents I’ve sent submissions to. I compose the letter within Scrivener and then can copy and paste the letter so I have the exact copy of the letter I sent to each editor or agent. I list all the items they want within the index card, and any additional information I need at a glance within the notepad to the side. (The first three chapters, query letter, synopsis, etc) I add the date when I sent the query, and how I sent it—via snail mail, email, or through their query process.
I change the date when I hear from them, and if they want additional information, I add what they asked for and when I sent it. I can keep track of all those necessary details for quick reference. Then I know where I stand with each submission. I monitor time frames, so if I haven’t heard, I can re-query within their guidelines.
Other writers organize their blogs within Scrivener. Many of us add to an on-going WIPs file with various ideas for upcoming projects. Some maintain an idea log. I also, using the Scratchpad option within the program, keep track of my hero and heroine characteristics, secondary character details, setting, and all those other things you need to know but might not remember. I also produce a cuts file—all the scenes I cut out—are contained within a Scratchpad file for each book.
As a writing tool, Scrivener is the one I use the most. There are plenty more benefits I didn’t touch on. In short, Scrivener is a tool to make our lives a little easier. It’s not perfect and there are blips from time to time, but it’s aided me in that ever present problem of staying organized. Happy writing!
Peace has reigned for so long, most beings believe dragons are mere myths, including elf professor Dr. Lindy Veles. After meeting attractive Dr. Alex von Schreider—a surly professor from a bear shifter family who possesses plenty of paranormal power, yet can’t shift—things start to spiral downward. Especially when he catches Lindy’s strong shifter scent. Elves don’t normally shift. Alex finds the compelling elf’s denials suspicious. Lindy thinks he’s crazy to believe she’s a shifter.
As they delve into the ancient Dragon Chronicles, tomes about dragons, it quickly becomes clear their efforts are no mere academic exercise. Dragons are suddenly becoming all too real. When Lindy shifts into one, Alex discovers he’s meant to control her dragon—the most powerful creature on earth. The pair is caught in the middle of two raging battles . . . their own personal emotional war and the war to save their world.
With the clock ticking, Lindy and Alex must surrender their misconceptions about themselves and dragons, and unite to begin the fight for their very existence.
“From her squeaky voice, I take it Lindy hasn’t accepted her new role in life?” Amusement and sympathy lit Keely’s eyes.
“Neither of them, in fact.”
“I’m struggling with being a dragon, but I’ve got being an elf down,” Lindy huffed.
Alex turned amused eyes on Keely. “This is Lindy Veles, my dragon and my mate. She’s in denial.”
Mate? Her mind jammed into neutral. Lindy choked on the tea she just sipped. Alex bolted upright and tapped her back until she coughed the liquid out of her lungs. “Mate?” she choked out. This was way too soon.
He scooped her up and settled her on his lap. And therefore sheltered and protected her within his warmth. “Mate.”
No way. This was not possible.
Hugh leaned forward and sniffed in the freaky way shifters do. “Mates for sure.”
“You can smell it?” Ewain’s eyes were as wide as hers.
“Of course I can. I’m a shifter.”
“Because I can’t shift, it took me a lot longer to figure it out. I’d decided, like Keely, I wouldn’t be blessed with a mate.” Alex squeezed Lindy’s hip.
When had the world turned upside down?
DNA is still there, Alex.” Hugh frowned. “Besides, it’s probably better you can’t shift.”
“Why?” Alex demanded. Beneath her, she felt him tense.
“You have way too much power for an ordinary shifter to control. In fact, you’re the most powerful being I’ve ever scented. With the exception of Lindy.” Hugh waved a hand toward her.
Someone—anyone—was welcome to all her ‘power.’ She’d gladly give the miserable creature away. And while I’m wishing, can someone please turn the world right-side-up again? I’d like to get off.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
D.R. Grady lives with her husband near Hershey, PA. She adores chocolate, laughing, collecting bags, books, and shoes, and adores writing stories that resonate with others.