Creative Chronicles of a Writing Drummer

Using Modern Technology to hit your Daily Writing Quota

I thought I’d take this opportunity to touch on the subject of Writer/Author Time Management as I’ve come across a number of people on various blogs and forums who struggle with trying to hit their daily quotas.

How is the best way to get as many words out a day as possible? I can only say what works for me but I use a methodology which easily allows me to hit at least 2000 words a day.

Not everyone can do this, because in order to hit my daily quote I use three pieces of crucial software, and an equally crucial piece of technology.  That technology is an iPhone.  I love my iPhone.  I love Apple; I use an iPhone4 and a Macbook Pro, but you can also use an iPad as your mobile device or a PC instead of a Mac.

The software I use on my Mac is called Scrivener.  There is a PC version, however I can’t comment on its functionality as I haven’t used it. I won’t go into detail  here what Scrivener is, other than to say it is an advanced word processing application.  I’ll post a link below for you take a closer look; it’s well worth investing in.

On my iPhone I use an application called Writeroom.  I think I paid around $4.99 for it, but would have paid double that.

Writeroom is written by a gentleman named Jesse Grojean who has provided an easy to use interface for writing on the iPhone.  It’s uncluttered and looks great.

On my Mac, I also have an application called Dropbox. Dropbox is an online repository where one can save any kind of file.  It’s basically a hard drive in the cloud.  The free version of Dropbox has around 2Gb worth of space to use – I believe.  More than enough for the text files which make up your novel/short story/articles.

So, how do these applications work together?

Well, firstly,you’ll need to registet and download Dropbox; Dropbox is free to use but you can pay for more space online if you choose. Once that’s done, Dropbox will create a folder on your Mac/PC called, believe it or not, “Dropbox”.  In that folder, all one needs to do is create a folder called Writeroom.

Step two is to set-up Scrivener to connect and synchronise with Dropbox.  This will ensure the project you’re writing in Scrivener synchronises to the Dropbox Folder on your Mac/PC, which in turn automatically syncs to Dropbox online.

Next step; purchase and download the Writeroom application for iPhone and again setup the sync to Dropbox online. Once this is done you’ll immediately have access to your writing – as you’ve synchronised it already though Scrivener.

Now, when you’re on the plane, train, or waiting for your morning coffee you can write on your iPhone knowing that the novel/short story you’re working on will sync with Dropbox online – in the Writeroom Folder.

When you return home and open your Mac/PC, Scrivener will automatically sync the Writeroom folder and update all the changed files in Scrivener, and if you should continue editing the file on Scrivener and save, it will again re-sync with Dropbox online.
The following morning, when sitting on a plane, or a train, you can simply open the Writeroom app on your iPhone and all the changes and additions will be right where you left off.  Anyway, you get the idea; that’s what file sync is. Any text updated on either device will update the central repository of your writing (Dropbox).

Now, I travel a lot; to and from home on a weekday is around 3 hours, so that gives me a lot of time to write – 15 hours/week.  That’s excluding whatever I can get done at home, but with two children under the age of five, that’s a little difficult at times.
If anyone would like further details on how to set this up, then feel free to comment.

Until then, take a look at the links I promised.

You’ll find that using this methodology will greatly assist in both your writing time management and your ability to reach any deadlines.

Good luck.  Write, write, write!

One Response to Using Modern Technology to hit your Daily Writing Quota

  1. I have been dreading switching to the Iphone because my Galaxy takes such great photos but this may change my mind 🙂

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