Evolve or Pie

If you write long things, like novels, you probably prefer one piece of software over another. (Funny use of the word “piece,” isn’t it? But that’s the term we’ve ended up with, as if MS Word was as good as pie. It isn’t.)

For many of us, our favorite software is the one we’ve got right now (and have had for years) that doesn’t require any thought. It’s only text, after all, for us writers–and for most of us, it’s just the draft that we’re plugging away on, and any impediments to word count are deadly. Having to stop and learn something new might mean we don’t get published until 2057.

In spite of this, I upgraded my favorite writing program, Scrivener, to 2.0, in part because of its promise to format your manuscript for the Kindle or other sites via ePub, etc. And I’m a soon-to-be Indie Published Writer.

Unfortunately, the plug-in for Scrivener to the Kindle, Kindlegen,  is not compatible with Mac OS 10.4.X, which I learned the hard way. (Try, fail, scream, try, fail, yell, try, fail, ask for help, fail, Google “Kindlegen not working on Mac!” and read 452 random useless posts until finding the info:)

Kindlegen only works with MacOS 10.5 and up.

So, I’ve had my MacBook since early 2007, and it’s being held together with electrical tape, but I still think if it as being new. (And I still expect to get carded when I buy beer, too.) I looked into an upgrade (see above: Evolve or Pie Die) and decided to follow the Don’t Throw Good Money after Bad rule, and putter along without using Kindlegen until I buy a new laptop next year.

As for my technical problem, I still love Scrivener, even if it can’t export to Kindle with my ancient operating system.  Calibre can do that step for me, as well as organizing all my eBooks across Mac and Linux and iThings. And it’s free.

However, since I’ve had the new version of Scrivener I’ve had to learn new things. It isn’t always good to clutter your brain with new information–some of that crap can go viral in there, corrupting your files, making you do stuff you shouldn’t do, like reformat books instead of writing new ones. It’s a time-suck, a distraction, an illusion of working toward your goals.

So, I will try to stop learning new things I don’t need and focus on the learning the things I do, like what kind of fun, steamy fantasy to dive into next.

After I eat some pie.