I think I’ve come to a useful view of a writer’s work which may form the basis for my program. Producing a novel, say, has several distinct types of tasks and only one of them is actually writing the final words. The rest are, for example;
Character development – figuring out who your characters are
Reviewing – letting other people read and comment on your work
Redrafting – writing is rewriting, you know.
Structuring – arranging passages to form a narrative
Summarising – writing story treatments, synopses, etc
Checking consistency – making sure the story holds up logically (eg no plot holes)
Research – learning about parts of the real world for verisimilitude (eg reading history for historical fiction)
Journalling – writing daily thoughts down as a way of developing ideas or recording progress
I don’t know of any programs that really take into account these seperate tasks and support the writer. For example, with redrafting, people just use multiple word documents or overwrite old prose with new prose. Wouldn’t it be better if each draft was saved off so you could see the development of the idea? So that you could never lose anything?
Any ideas, from the writers out there, what kinds of tasks you involve yourself in, and exactly what it means to you? I’ll try to pull together some of these ideas in a later post. Thanks.