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Old 10-03-2012, 05:22 AM   #256
Bookmaker & Cat Slave
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Originally Posted by Metal Mick View Post
I gave a lot of thought and many rereads and drafts of my last post before I responded. I took exception to some of what you wrote because of the way you phrased your tirade, even the closing statement of your initial post is insulting. And if you say the program is perfect for "fritterers", and I have a licensed copy then your comments are directed at me. There isn't a lot of apparent care in how you phrase things. Read below:
Well, listen: I stand by what I said, even if I either said it inconsiderately, or it was interpreted badly, or some combo thereof. I still think it's mostly hat, no cattle; I do think that it appeals to people who want more...visual stimulation. I also think that it could distract people from actually writing. We all know people who procrastinate, wanting to collect "more research" or "more images of County X," or this that or the next thing. If anything, I'd say that LSB (and perhaps, Scrivener--but I can't speak to that), actually enables that behavior. I have plenty of procrastination techniques of my own--fortunately, the "bright-shiny-pretty-thingy" vice isn't one of them. Mine are not "better;" they're simply different. So, perhaps, instead of saying "frittering," I should have used the 100 words I just used, to explain what I meant in a less offensive way. I also think that Freemind is a perfect program for fritterers--does this mean that every person who has it IS a fritterer? NO. I simply mean that it has a lot of potentially time-wasting capabilities that would appeal to fritterers. I still think the same thing about LSB. Hopefully, this time, the statement will convey what I mean and neither more nor less. And anyone who's ever seen a DIY kids' book made in Word will know full well that WORD has a ton of capabilities that appeal to prospective fritterers, as well, albeit, probably fewer than Freemind or LSB.

You don't seem to have read what I've written previously in this thread on LSB, nor your own words. Your final comment - as with many others in your second post - can easily be read as being phrased to denigrate or belittle. Is it any wonder I took exception? I could easily insert snide remarks into this response - as you have done - but I've taken care not to.
For, I think, the third time, I'm sorry you take them as snide. I take them as rather pissed off at the software. For example, you say that you can take completed chapters, put them in a Storyboard, move them around, and output the result--that's what you said a post back. Not to be dense, but, how, exactly, did you do that? You said you tested it. If I have a builder with chapters in it, and I want to play around with those sequences (say, chapters as scenes, whatever)--how? I can't export the chapters from A builder to a Storyboard (which I genuinely think would seem fairly fundamental as a feature). Just out of curiosity--if you'll indulge me-when you took, say, 10 chapters in your WIP, from your builder, a) how did you put them INTO Storyboard, and then, when you'd shifted them hither and yon, how did you export the chapters (replete with text, of course) back to a builder with all the chapter titles and all the chapter text intact, simply reordered?

As you said you'd done it, I'd like to know, because I've tried numerous ways; they all require me to manually re-enter the individual chapter titles into the Storyboard, then associate the chapters in Chapter mode, and then, when I export the re-ordered "chapters" to a builder, all I get are the chapter titles-not the related chapter TEXT. I've tried this at least 10 different ways, and I do not see any way to take existing, typed chapters from a builder (nor planner) to a Storyboard, move them around for a while and then send the resorted chapters, in sequence, back to a builder/planner with the relevant chapters still attached to the chapter TITLES. So--what did you do, please? As I also said--I did actually ask the developer, back in about Spring of 2010, and he did, at that time, say it "didn't work that way." I admit, I then thought it was a pretty silly feature, because the same thing can be done with ease in Word, and move all the chapter TEXT, too, without all the retyping, cutting-and-pasting, etc., with one click, drag and drop If you have an automated way in LSB that means the chapter titles DO export in toto and in sequence to the Storyboard, swap them all about, and then automatically export them all (with content) back IN, I would genuinely be desirous of learning it.

I don't mind if you or others don't like LSB, nor if their preference is to use several different applications instead of one: strong arguments can be made for either course. There's lots here who like Scrivener, WriteWay, and other applications and they are productive in them. That's fine by me: I'm certainly not an evangelist for LSB. I have written a lot in just a wordprocessor, using whatever features that I felt were useful, but I find the "novel-writing" software provides more for the way I work.

I only post my experiences (both good and bad) here so others have a bit more information than they otherwise might not get.

I last seriously used Word when it was known as Word 6 - even then it had lots of scope for customizing, even changing colours! I doubt that has changed at all, and it is certainly a part of LibreOffice. But that wasn't why I stopped using Word, nor did I take exception to the developers including that feature, even though it was of little use to me.

I guess the bottom line is that if you have a message to pass on, give it a little thought first, and leave the snide comments out.

BTW--for the record--it actually takes a significant amount of frustration with software to get me to the "shriek" stage. We work with it all day long; we build hundreds of ebooks monthly--I'm not "new" to software frustration. By the time I "shriek" at a software developer, I've utterly lost my sense of humor. It's not an instantaneous reaction, by far.

I also actually started out--believe it or not--with ye olden OS/6--not Word; IBM standalone word processing machines, one step up from the IBM Selectric II. Before the advent of the desktop computer. I started with WordStar and then with Lotus' then-product WordPerfect. I loathed Word for years, thinking it was Satan-spawn, until I kicked myself in the ass and spent a whopping two hours learning the more advanced and less-known features. I don't say lightly that once learned, Word is actually a fairly fabulous program. I know, I know--I'd never have thought I'd have heard the words come out of my mouth--but it's true.

When I compare what I just tried to describe, (vis-a-vis the storyboards), to using Word's outlining/document map functioning, where I can just grab a chapter title and move the whole section, with the concomitant text, in 1 second...well, yes, it's hard for me to see the advantage. If people work better with storyboards, then, yes, I can see the purpose. But not if what I've described is accurate--manually type the chapter titles to get the chapters themselves to match up with their related chapter heads in Storyboard, then move things around, and then export it as a only get the same Chapter heads? So you have to C&P the chapters BACK into the Builder? Then I'd say it's not great.

I also found the "styles" in the exported RTF kind of a giant pain to deal with. I was surprised--and, no, I don't remember all the details now--of how MUCH clean-up I had to do in Word to get the RTF--which should import beautifully--to work properly. I was pretty irritated by that, as well. I wasn't even USING Styles in LSB--this was just garbage-y codes that got exported for no discernible reason. Again--we work with Styles in RTF and Word and CSS in HTML all day long, so this isn't alien territory to me; I was pretty perturbed at how much clean-up it took for a simple text-only document to be cut-and-pasted into Word and cleaned of oddball style issues.

I liked the Outline function. I don't think it's anything particularly wonderful; but it's workable. (I'd like it better if, again, one didn't have to then create all the relevant chapters by typing their headings by hand a second time so they could be manually associated with the Outline headers--why not just an export function that lets you create X number of pre-named Chapters? As you can do with a Planner?) As we've agreed, the mindmaps are pretty dismal. I won't speak to keeping Character "Journals." Everybody writes their own way. I don't think I quite get the reasoning for having an "images" function separate from a "gallery" function. I'm sure there is one--I simply don't get it. With regard to the "timeline" function, as I said--it seems to require that the writer create all the entries--you have to manually create a timeline for each chapter of your manuscript (that you've already written), etc. One of the things that I rather liked about YWriter was that it automatically generated the timelines for each character itself--so you could easily see that you'd put "Kate" in two scenes occurring at the same time. As far as I can tell, LSB's timeline does not do that for you; for it to "work," you have to manually type in all the entries. I can see that being pretty tedious if you had 25 characters with interwoven story lines. OTOh, the way that works may have been changed as well, as I'm sure you're going to tell me that the Storyboarding has been changed.

I just think that to make it work the way it's advertised to work takes a whole lot of workarounds. To me, that's not efficient.

My last line of my last post wasn't intended as snarky, EITHER. I meant it. At this point, I'm afraid to say anything to you that's open to interpretation, so I'll limit it to, goodnight.

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