Happy Last Day of Summer!

And a mild summer for us at that.

I recently tried out the beta of Scrapple, the mind-mapping software from Literature & Latte, the people who made Scrivener. The latter product I can highly recommend, and write all my long-term fiction in. The resources it provides are exceptional and I love the full-screen mode when it comes to a no-distractions environment. Also between the 5 backups, saving every time you’re idle for 2 seconds, and the ability to snapshot a save whenever you like, it’s virtually impossible to have a file go completely corrupt.  I could sound like an advertisement for Scrivener, without ever getting paid by them. But it’s a great product, and it’s paid for itself in spades. Here’s another blog endorsing it, with a lot more of the technical bits, which was beyond my purpose in this blurb: http://sressiambre.wordpress.com/2013/09/01/scrivener-and-writing-groups/

I wanted to like Scrapple, and I have to say, if you’re a mind-mapper, you probably will. But after a dozen or so attempts, I quickly came to recall why I never liked ‘brainstorming,’ no matter what title you put on it. I’m a very linear thinker. An outline comes pretty naturally to me. And I like to think progressively, not just throw things against a wall and see what sticks. I’ve had people tell me that doesn’t sound creative. I give that a shoulder shrug and say, ‘Meh.’ I don’t buy the ‘A creative mind is a messy mind’ argument either. What works for one person doesn’t work for another. And I have enough rough drafts on the table to know I can craft a story.

So in the end, I have to say Scrapple isn’t for me. But it may be for you. It certainly is good at what it claims to do. And the good folks at Literature and Latte will support it.

On another note, I hold in my ink-stained fingers the third and (seemingly) final volume in Larry Correia’s Grimnoir Chronicles: Warbound. And I can say it’s a fine read already. Most people will know the author from his B-Horror meets Gun Porn guilty pleasure of a series: The Monster Hunters. I actually got to him through this series, which has been whip-smart from the get-go. But all his writing is intense, lots of action, yet still possessing humor and character to spare. It’s not on the Jim Butcher Dresden Files level of pure reading bliss yet. But he’s getting closer every book.