For a long time I wrote in Microsoft Word, simply because it was there, and you use it to create documents.
When I started to write different scenes and different parts of my stories at different time, I ended up with multiple documents that all belonged to the same story. Apart from the fact that I had to copy and paste them all together in the end (tedious!), I also had to invent a way to keep them in order.
So I named them something like “Scene_4.doc”, “Scene_5.doc” or even “zz_Sword_fight_goes_at_the_end.doc”
Obviously I very quickly ended up with scores of files called something like “Scene_5_revised_version2.doc”
My next solution was to create subfolders numbered from 01 to 12 (or whichever number I would go to), and putting the separate documents in there. This way, I could kind of keep them ordered no matter what I had named them.
It still left me with the task of merging them together into a single document in the end.
Surely there must exist a better way to do this! So I found myself googling for novel writing software – even though I’m still unsure whether I will ever actually finish my “novel”. After dismissing some straightaway for their price (I’m just doing this as a hobby, after all), and others for comptability (I’m on a Mac), I tried some out.
After some trial and error, I have finally settled on Scrivener, and I love it to bits. Given the fact that I have no prior experience with other dedicated writing software, I’m also blissfully unaware of its shortcomings, as I have nothing to compare it to.
I do love how I can now write scenes as and when inspiration strikes me, and simply rearranging the sections by dragging and dropping them where I want them. Pure gold for me!