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Irishman's Messy Desk

Discussion in 'Author's Roundtable' started by Irishman, Mar 30, 2014.

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Fanfic Novel or Diary Format?

  1. Fanfic

    55.6%
  2. Diary

    44.4%
  1. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    Woah! It looks pretty cool! I really don't think I need something that fancy though. But thank you Magi :D

    It makes collecting data easy, but that's why I have messy desk :p
     
  2. imaginepageant

    imaginepageant Slytherin Alumni

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    The link is safe, it goes to the Scrivener page. You can read all about it there, but I'll run down my favorite features for you. Since I have both Scrivener and Photoshop open anyway, I'll take some screenshots since they'll better explain what I'm talking about.

    1. ORGANIZATION. SWEET, SWEET ORGANIZATION. Instead of having everything dumped all in one file and having to scroll through dozens (or sometimes hundreds) of pages to find something, you can have an endless amount of files in folders, in other folders, in other folders. An example of how I have my fanfic scenes and chapters nested:

    [​IMG]

    So if I'm working on a scene in chapter 5 and I forgot the name of that one guard I'd mentioned back in chapter 2, instead of scrolling back and trying to find a needle in a haystack, I can go directly to the scene that guard was in. This also makes it super easy to rearrange your story; if I decided, for example, that the Ralof scene should go after the Healer scene, all I'd have to do is drag and drop right there in that file list.

    2. Notes! There's a sidebar on every individual file and folder in which you can make all sorts of notes, ranging from chapter or scene summaries, tags, file status (e.g. first draft, finished), whatever other labels you want (e.g. whose POV a scene is in), and general notes.

    I don't have scene summaries done for my fanfic, but this is what it would look like in the corkboard view—what I usually use for a quick glance at the structure of a chapter.

    [​IMG]

    There's also a standard outline view, for those who prefer that.

    [​IMG]

    And here's a look at how I utilize the notes section. I usually write down the date and time of the scene, what's going to happen in it, and after I've finished the first draft, any notes about what I need to add or change. (In other works I get a bit more detailed and even put in what part of the three-act structure each scene is, like the inciting event or act climax or whatever—so I can easily see where my big events are or what's missing that I need to add.)

    [​IMG]

    3. Snapshots. See that little camera icon down beneath the document notes? That's another really awesome feature. It creates a copy of the file at any given time, so you can edit your little heart out, and if you later think, "Omg, what the hell did I do that for?" you can roll back to a previous copy... or just pull whatever bits you want out of the copy to put back into the scene! (This has been my saving grace many times, and another reason I hated using Word—once it's gone in Word, it's gone.)

    4. Split screen! You can view and edit two files at once, have research open and easily accessible while working on a scene, or write with an image of a setting or a character right beside it. As someone who always envisions certain people as characters when I write or read, this is immensely useful to me. My screen normally looks like this when I write:

    [​IMG]

    5. Other little things.

    - You can set a target word count for each scene, and that target as well as your current word count will always show up right at the bottom of the current file.

    - There's a fullscreen mode which will hide your taskbar and all other programs—great if you get easily distracted by Facebook or the whatnot.

    - Typewriter scrolling: your cursor will always be center screen, so whatever you're currently writing will be in the perfect line of sight, instead of way down at the bottom of the page.

    - Autosave! I have mine set to save every ten seconds without activity. If I pause to think, it saves. If I go get a drink, it saves. I never have to worry about losing unsaved work.

    - You can export your entire draft at any time, into a number of file types, like a Word document or a PDF. Great for printing your work off to read and revise, sharing with friends, or sending to publishers.

    SEE I TOLD YOU I COULD RAVE ABOUT SCRIVENER FOR HOURS.
     
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  3. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    That looks really cool! How much did they give you to say all that :p

    On the topic of money, did you buy the $40(?) version?
     
  4. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    This is another test of sorts. I am just writing a segment of the story how I envision most of it will be set out. This may or may not feature in the Fic... to be honest I dont know what I am going to write about. Oh I know! This is about the time Benjii met up with his long lost pal Ghorbash...


    It had been a tough day-long journey from Cracked Tusk Keep to the Orcish Stronghold of Dushnikh Yal. As Benjii trekked to the peak of a hill, he saw the familiar Longhouse and the intimidating log fence around the Strongholds perimeter. Even from the distance Benjii could see a large Orc warrior sparring a wooden training dummy. Ghorbash. GroBenjii could do little to contain the very un-Orcish grin that had plastered itself across his face.

    Seeing my old friend Ghorbash today brort back many memoris. We used to train together day in, day out. And if we wernt fighting, we would be chasing the pretty Chiefs dauhters around. He looks old though now. I think the war may have taken it out of him. Still got one of the strongest spirits and carries himself with far more pride than I have seen. He even offered to come with me on my travels.

    Ghorbash turned from his training dummy. "I thought I could smell chicken plops." He growled, slowly walking towards Benjii with a menacing air.

    "Still a mouthy runt I see, Ghorbash." He retorted. Ghorbash was no runt to anyone's measurements, but GroBenjii always like to remind everyone that he was the biggest. Easily a couple inches taller than the next biggest Orc... which in this Stronghold, happened to be Ghorbash...

    They were standing just a couple feet apart now. Ghorbash sheathed his sword and as his hand left the hilt, his fist clenched and swung towards an unsuspecting Benjii. The larger Orc barely had time to move his head back and he felt his old friends knuckles grazing his nose. With a grunt Ghorbash pushed his advantage and put his weight into a big left hook. This strike connected with Benjii's temple and immediately he saw stars. Benjii stumbled back and again the ex-legionnaire came at him with a powerful swing. Just before the hit landed, GroBenjii ducked and tackled Ghorbash to the ground. The big Orc on top returned a couple of punches and as they both struggled to remain dominant, a number of spectators had started to get involved by forming a loose circle and cheering them on.

    A complicated flick with Ghorbash's knee saw Benjii get tossed off him and land heavily on his back a couple of feet away. Both Orcs slowly got to their feet, breathing heavily. Again, Ghorbash, always the instigator, came rushing in. This time Benjii's speed outmatched his friends aggressiveness and Ghorbash received a huge forearm coat hanger across the bridge of his noes. This huge blow knocked him to the ground nearly unconscious.

    "Haha!" Benjii roared with laughter turning to his small crowd. He loved the attention and winning a fight was the best kind of attention. "What are you still doing down there Iron Hand?" He dragged out the nickname of his friend in mockery but lent down and offered a helping hand. Ghorbash took the offer and as the both straightened up and gave each other a warriors handshake and lopsided hug.

    "Always the showman Benjii." The Orc turned to see who had addressed him.

    "Ah Chief Burguk!" Benjii went over and they to greeted with a warriors handshake. As the broke apart the Chief frowned at GroBenjii.

    "You think you can come into my Stronghold and not offer me the first fight!" The Chiefs voice thundered out and many of the younger males around the camp sI'm a racist asshole who doesn't understand boundaries, respect, or basic human decency and I need helped. Benjii tensed, preparing for another brawl. If the Chief caught him off guard he may not be able to have shelter for the night.

    The Chiefs demeanor changed in an instant as he let out a laugh. "Come inside GroBenjii. The wives have cooked dinner and it is too dark for me to be sober!"

    Benjii visibly relaxed and stated "Aye, I have to agree with you on that Chief," as he followed him into the Longhouse.

    Burgruk hasn't changed. Always was the firecracker. Didnt no if he was gonna hit me or offer me a drink after my tussle with Ghorbash. Im sitting here at the end of his Longhouse now though. It all worked out and the mead is making me drowsy. Tomorow I set off for Markarth and probably take Ghorbash with me.



    Ok, so its far from polished, I just wanted to see if its not too confusing if I swap between diary entries and real time? Does it make sense and is there anything I need to work on or anything... I take criticism really well :)
     
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  5. imaginepageant

    imaginepageant Slytherin Alumni

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    Yes, but I think I got it for $30... Scrivener is a sponsor of Nanowrimo and they give you a discount in December if you're a Nanowrimo winner. :D Seriously, I would pay $100 for this program, it's that good.
     
  6. imaginepageant

    imaginepageant Slytherin Alumni

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    Looks great!

    The only thing I think you need to work on is punctuation... most of it was fine, but I noticed you didn't use apostrophes for possessives. "The Chiefs voice" should be "The Chief's voice," and so on.

    Also, I think the diary snippets should stand out a bit more. The font size is so close to the rest of it that you don't automatically register that you're reading something else. Make the font a bit bigger, or maybe a slightly lighter or darker shade of gray. Or maybe indent it? Anything to set it a bit more apart from the narration would help.
     
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  7. shadowkitty

    shadowkitty Mistress of Shadows

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    No the diary entries are fine, they work in well with the story line. Like Ipag said, just watch grammar and such, but you are writing well.

    BTW, a log fence around a compound is called a Palisade. When you say fence it makes it seem like the Orcs have built a nice little picket fence around their longhouse. Where as Palisade sounds more grandiose. One envisions enormous spiked logs around the perimeter.
     
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  8. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    Yeah I realize the punctuation was pretty dodgy. I didn't really bother proof reading as it was more to see if the diary entries worked in with the story.

    I agree 100% with the diary entries blending in too much. I have lightened them up now and think it looks better. I don't want to make the font any bigger as it stands a bit too much from the real time text.

    I'm not completely convinced with having deliberate spelling mistakes in the diary entries. eg. brort instead of brought....

    Thanks Kitty about the palisade info! Your right, I don't want people thinking that Orcs are now building picket fences to keep out intruders ;)
     
  9. shadowkitty

    shadowkitty Mistress of Shadows

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    The spelling mistakes in the diary entries could go either way. On one hand it endears us a little more to Benjii, but then as a reader one thinks, oh look there, a spelling mistake. But then if you keep it consistent within all diary entries then the reader comes to accept it and even expect it. Perhaps you could even make some of them a little humorous. Depends on just how illiterate you want to make Benjii. Personally I think it's adorable... winks
     
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  10. shadowkitty

    shadowkitty Mistress of Shadows

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    A picket fence might keep out a herd of marauding My Little Ponies, but Giants and Mammoths... I'm not convinced :D
     
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  11. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    Ok, I think I will keep the spelling errors. It was AS88's idea and I quite liked it. If I only have spelling issues through the diary entries, Im sure people will get the right idea.

    I don't want him to be too illiterate but just a few words get the better of him :p
     
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  12. ultimatedovahkiin

    ultimatedovahkiin Now's not the time for fear. That comes later.

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    So, just my suggestion but before you even start the story, at the beginning of the thread just put a little note that say there are going to be spelling errors in the diary entries, those are there on purpose. That's just my suggestion though.
     
  13. raido KASAI

    raido KASAI Ansei Master Badass

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    That would need the 18+ tag.

    :D
     
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  14. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    Not if we close the door ;)
     
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  15. raido KASAI

    raido KASAI Ansei Master Badass

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    In all seriousness though, I like your concept. I think the intermingling of the diary as a part of the fanfic is a good idea. Could be useful for capturing an extra perspective on the story that might not be quite as possible without it. Format-wise I think it's pretty easy to pick out the two parts the way you have it now. Seems to flow pretty well into it and then back to the narrative.

    I say go with the occasional spelling errors or grammar mistakes if you want to. It is not all that uncommon in creative writing to do something like that. You often see slang, examples of creative dialects and such and that's not too different from your idea. The idea of highlighting that the errors are intended is a good idea though you don't necessarily have to do it outside of the work itself. You could have your character mention that he wishes he had better grammar/spelling skills but he wanted to start a diary so he is doing it regardless.

    I've recently decided to switch my own piece on Raido's story from strictly journals into more of a fanfic type of thing. I'm still going with the multiple perspectives like I was with the separate journals, but I'm leaning towards having the main story told by Raido in first-person and may have my other characters do the same in different chapters or sections.

    What I like about the more traditional fanfic over just a journal is that it's easier to tell events fully as they occurred rather than just one person's view retold after the fact. Seems easier to keep a consistent amd more complete narrative going.
     
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    Irishman: 17 Points (Thanks for your input) Apr 19, 2014
  16. Specter of Death

    Specter of Death a soul devoid of eternal bonds
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    No joke man. You are literally my metaphorical JESUS! I have been looking for a software that does this for something as cheap as this for as long as I can remember, and you have literally saved my life. I worship thee!
     
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  17. shadowkitty

    shadowkitty Mistress of Shadows

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    I use ywriter, it does the same thing and it's free.
     
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  18. Irishman

    Irishman Well-Endowed Member

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    Jeez! you guys waltz into my office when Im not here, rummage through ma papers than dont even have the decency to clean it up! You guys have been sprung o_O !!

    Hehe just joking... but seriously, where the fluff is my stapler??
     
  19. shadowkitty

    shadowkitty Mistress of Shadows

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    leaves basket of easter eggs on Imans desk.

    also... I broke your stapler...
     
  20. Specter of Death

    Specter of Death a soul devoid of eternal bonds
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    *pulls out stapler from pocket, awkwardly sets it on desk

    Sent from my Samsung GS4
     

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