1. BFGuru
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    BFGuru Active Member

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    Saving your work

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by BFGuru, Oct 29, 2013.

    Right now I'm saving each chapter in a different file, but within the same folder on my computer. However, others have suggested I just write it manuscript style. My thoughts were that it would make editing each chapter easier, but then I'd have to reformat everything if I intend to publish it. I'd like this to be my first publishing attempt, so I want to get as much of the process right if possible.
     
  2. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    I heard the way you are doing is definitely much easier for the editing process. I also heard that if you go to e-publish it needs to be in Adobe. I'm not positive about that though.
     
  3. BFGuru
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    BFGuru Active Member

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    I don't know what venue I want to publish in yet. I guess we will see what the market is like when I finish writing.
     
  4. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've always kept my chapters in separate files within one folder. It only takes a second to insert each chapter into one document. As to formatting, I'm not sure what your friends mean by "manuscript style", but if you're going to self-publish, places like Smashwords have all the instructions for that, and my understanding is that they're typically very simple. I'd say do things your own way, even if it takes a whole ten extra minutes in the long run. ;)
     
  5. obsidian_cicatrix
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    obsidian_cicatrix I ink, therefore I am. Contributor

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    Or, you could use software like Scrivenor, or some such, that allows you to keep all your scenes and chapters in separate files but can easily compile them into manuscript format without having to do a load of donkey work in the way of insertion. It costs a bit, but I've found it to be worth every penny. I hate having to repetitively open and close windows, to view my files, and Scriv manages it all within the one GUI.
     
  6. Dazen
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    Dazen Active Member

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    @shadowwalker I gather Manuscript Style is the way I do it, with one continuous document that you can scroll through. Correct me if I'm wrong, though.
     
  7. David Kulesh
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    David Kulesh Banned

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    I would definitely save it as a manuscript.

    [link removed] ~Wreybies
     
  8. RickAndrew
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    RickAndrew New Member

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    I guess this is correct way that you are doing...
     
  9. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    This is what I do. It makes editing a lot easier and a lot more manageable. Once everything is done, I can simply combine everything into one file for the submission process. Just my personal preference, however.
     
  10. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    It all comes down to what works for you. You might also check out the free trial of Scrivener. Handling scenes and chapters easily and moving them around or editing is something software does very well.
     
  11. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't know what "manuscript style" is, so... I save it a chapter at a time just because it makes more sense to me. It's just an organizational thing and as I said, one way might add an extra 10 minutes to the formatting process - but save hours prior to that. Really has nothing to do with the writing itself so why change it?
     
  12. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    I write manuscript style, and keep a notepad log of words per day, times, etc. Kinda like a timecard. When I edit, I keep track of the same things, as well as where I ended editing - so I know exactly where I need to go the next time I get to it. Sounds like a lot of work, maybe, but isn't to me. It makes things simpler for me, but that doesn't mean it would work for anyone else. You have to do what works for you.

    The most important thing I could suggest, however you write, is to back. it. up. Nothing worse than losing something you've spent so much time on...
     
  13. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    if you write it 'ms style' it will BE in the proper format for submitting to publishers... and if you then decide to self-publish, that's the time to convert it to 'book' style...

    btw, if you have a later version of ms word, it's easiest to work on if you open the 'navigation pane' so you can zip from any chapter to any other, 'with the greatest of ease'...
     
  14. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I, too, keep chapters in separate files until I have a finished first draft, then I combine them. I find it makes things much easier, especially in my current project, where I am juggling present-day chapters and historical chapters.

    But, ditto what @Trish said about backing up. Files do get corrupted or accidentally deleted.
     
  15. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I write in all in one document. Just use the print preview function and zoom at 10% - this lets you view something like 50 pages in one screen. Since new chapters start only half way down the page and each new scene is separated by a single asterisk, it's not terribly hard to find the beginning and end of scenes/chapters. And because this is my own novel, I know pretty much what the chapter is about if I just look at either the beginning or end. If you wanna move entire scenes and chapters, just untick the "magnify" option, which allows you to select text in the print preview. Then just copy and paste.

    Mind you it's true sometimes I wish it was just the click of a button! But it's perfectly fine writing everything in one doc.
     
  16. Dazen
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    Dazen Active Member

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    I write in one doc as well, since I find it so much easier to format a single document that a collection, and also, you can just use the "Find Word" thing at the bottom of Word 2010+ for Chapter Titles (Not sure about before 2010 Editions)
     
  17. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Oh yeah, find word is a God send! I was quite surprised to find that in all of 130k words, there was only one instance of me writing: "I would just" - can you believe that? It's not even some obscure or flowery adjective. It's so mundane, and it only occurs once in 130k words!? I now use this trick to get me back down to where I left off in the manuscript rather than scrolling like hell :D
     
  18. Dazen
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    Dazen Active Member

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    I know published works 200k + words long that only use words like tall about 10 times. And then you look at words like "the, he, of, a," which are used about 5000 times for every 100k words. It's quite surprising.
     
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  19. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    it is that easy, with the navigation pane... haven't you ever tried it?
     
  20. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I don't know what that is. I use Word 2007, not the latest version as I don't like the lack of a print preview (in the 2010 version you have to select print and you can't zoom out to 10% anyway). I don't know how I'd jump from all the different parts of my novel without my print preview - it's not always that I need to move entire scenes/chapters or only need the beginning or end of it. Sometimes I just wanna check what on earth happened and it's somewhere in the middle.

    The only thing that sounds remotely like a navigation pane that I know of is the document map, which allows you to jump to the start of each chapter. Good for navigation, but I've not tried to actively move the chapters around on that little branch of chapters under the map. Maybe it's possible.
     
  21. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'm now wondering how many times I've used tall... lol
     
  22. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'd find that so aggravating, as I like to reference earlier chapters as I work.

    Before switching to Scrivener (where everything is neatly divided yet at the same time conveniently contained in a single file), I just used the headings templates in MS Word to make navigating the document simpler: each heading was listed in the sidebar and just clicking on it immediately takes you to that location in the document.
     
  23. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    that's what the navigation pane does... but it's not a 'map'... it's a side window that opens up at the left, if selected from the 'view' options...

    i don't know if it can do that... maybe it can, but i haven't tried it...
     
  24. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah, the trial of Scrivener is worth checking out before you purchase MSWord, unless you need it for other purposes. Writing stories in Word drives me nuts now. Also, if you're looking for a traditional word processor, Libre Office is free and works pretty much like MSWord pre-ribbon format (and saves to .doc format etc).
     
  25. Okon
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    Okon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ywriter5 is free and has some neat exporting options. You can save the entire novel or as little as one scene to a number of different formats. It also lets you manage your characters, plot items, locations, scene order/location and macro-rename chapters; and more, of course.

    I prefer it over Scrivener because I find it easier on the eye.
     

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