What do you use for writing a story? Pen and paper or computers? All of my stories are catalogued digitally. Google Drive is my friend. It works fine as is, but when I work on a bigger project that requires lots of research, character building, and note taking, I sometimes wonder if there is a better way to organize these elements. If you are like me, you may want to check Scrivener.

Writing on paper

Scrivener is a word processor for Windows and Mac. Various templates are available: novels, scriptwriting, short stories, academic papers, lectures, and so on. It helps writers organize concepts, notes, research, photos, videos, and documents. It has many great features, but here are my two favorites:

Corkboard
A classic way to visualize the whole story is to write down each scene on an index card, spread them on the cork board or floor, move scenes around until the story flows. With Scrivener, each file in your project gets a “card” automatically that you can customize with colors and labels. On the Corkboard, you can track scenes and characters visually.

Linguistic Focus
Are you aware of your writing habits? Without knowing, you may be repeating the same tired adjectives throughout your writing. Linguistic Focus helps you see how you use dialogue, nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, or conjunctions.

We all have different preferences and expectations when it comes to editing. Scrivener is not the only digital option; other tools include Reedsy and Plottr. Regardless of whether you write with your hand or computer, when you understand how these tools help you organize your projects, you may find new ways to use your traditional method.