When I started my novel last year, part of my process included finding the best tools to write the story. After all, the “how” or your process does in some ways effect your project. If it is easier to get the words and thoughts onto paper, however virtual, then you stand a greater chance of capturing those “lightning in the bottle” moments that inevitably occur during the writing process.
NaNoWriMo features a number of these tools – and the companies that make them become corporate sponsors of the event. It’s a sort of symbiosis – writers use the tools, and in many cases suggest innovations that improve them.
For me, the indispensable tool for writing Triangle:False Mirror became Yarny. This is a writing site that allows you to capture your work online through any web browser and save your novel to the cloud. Your work is saved in what are called “snippets” – online text files that you can organize by project, group together, move and reorder in any number of ways.
It has a number of truly outstanding and useful features, like a version “slider” that allows you to see the revisions you’ve made to a file, ways to organize reference materials (People, Places and Things folders), and the ability to have multiple projects in progress simultaneously that you can easily switch between.
And did I mention it’s all cloud based? Everything is saved to the web, meaning I can work anywhere, from any device that has Internet access and a browser. (If you are an Apple fan, there is now a Yarny app available – I’m an Android guy, so I’m holding out help).
The best part? Free. Oh, there is Yarny Premium, a subscription based version of the software that gives you access to extra features. But that’s optional – you can do it all for free if you so choose.
I believe in Yarny. So much so that I’ve used it for the past year to organize my notes for the entire Triangle project – not just the original novel, but the sequel (this year’s NaNoWriMo project), and beyond. And Yarny folks believe in me as well, as they have named me one of their Featured Writers.
So if you’re into writing, give the site a try. As the old saying goes, your mileage may vary – you might not find it your cup of tea. But for this writer, it’s been a great partnership.