Much More Than The Keyboard: Nalo Hopkinson, Justine Larbalestier, and Scott Westerfeld on Writing Gear

K. Tempest Bradford
Jul 5, 2016 · 2 min read

The is an interview with three amazing writers all at once: Nalo Hopkinson, Justine Larbalestier, and Scott Westerfeld. We talk about many things, including ergonomic writing setups for people with RSI and other physical issues, comfortable (and expensive) chairs, and how writing isn’t just about the act of typing words on the keyboard.

There’s also a long discussion about the wonders of Scrivener.

Many of the authors I’ve interviewed so far have been fans of, or at least users of, Scrivener, with one notable exception. This isn’t uncommon. Talk to enough professional and working writers, especially if they write fiction, and Scrivener is going to come up.

What I find interesting is that they each talk about different aspects of the program or have different ways they use the features. For instance, Justine revealed the different labels she has for drafts (starting with “Not Written”) and how, during the revision process, if she gets stuck, she’ll go looking for the scenes or chapters at the lowest level of completeness and work on them. Scott pointed out that this adds a bit of gamification to the work, and that then aids in getting the work done.

Scrivener isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. , and she’s pretty smart. For the people who think Scrivener might be for them but you have a hard time getting into it or feel like you’re not using it to the full potential or just feel intimidated from jump, I wish to be of service.

In the comments here or over on the podcast website, tell me what kinds of things you’d like to know about Scrivener, or what would make it easier for you to get started, or anything else that will help. I’m putting together a series on Scrivener for the podcast, and that’s coming up soon.

In the meantime, and let me know what you think of the interview and of the authors!


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The Write Gear Blog

A blog (and podcast!) exploring the analog and digital tools writers use to write

K. Tempest Bradford

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Spec Fic author, media critic, tech journalist. Host of ORIGINality, creator of the Tempest Challenge.

The Write Gear Blog

A blog (and podcast!) exploring the analog and digital tools writers use to write