The beta for Scrivener for Windows is available now. I picked it up on Monday, and I spent some time learning it and using my Tour de Holmes essays as a project to test it out with. I hadn’t used Scrivener before, but my Mac friends have consistently raved about it, and this seemed like a perfect chance to see what they were raving about.
And I get it now.
On the surface, it’s not too much different from a lot of other novel-writing software. But as I dug in, I realized that the designer has created a package that doesn’t actually force the user into any particular way of using it. Sure, there are some template decisions you have to make at the start, but beyond that it’s all open. The tutorial repeatedly shows you functionality and then tells you different ways to do the same thing, or admits that you might not use it. Scrivener is also very good and hiding things you aren’t using in a simple and understandable way. Within an hour, I was seeing the power of it.