Editing a Novel is still in the Dark Ages

NO CHAOS Daniela Hartmann via Compfight

Someone needs to build a writing tool that is better than Word and Write for editing a novel. The biggest issue I have with using a word processor is that they just don’t handle larger documents gracefully. How hard is it to buffer a 400 page rtf file? It must be more difficult than anti-gravity cars. Because nobody has done it yet.

The commenting features of these modern word processors are great. Heck, live editing in Google Docs is really cool. But even Google Docs chokes on loading longer documents. Novels can be hundreds of pages in length, especially an Epic Fantasy novel. Why can’t I load and edit such a long piece of TEXT easily on my computer? It’s TEXT!

Anyway, here I sit, using Write to edit my novel and wondering why I have to suffer with such a simple concept. I have other beefs with these programs too. The biggest is the lack of a portable dictionary of words added to the document. WTF people? I make up all kinds of words in my novels and carefully add them to my document dictionary and then I open the novel in another computer and bingo, now all my words are forgotten. I really dislike that.

Okay, back to the editing.

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2 thoughts on “Editing a Novel is still in the Dark Ages”

  1. Hmmm. You still have the old RTF versions of your novels, right? Merge several of them together until you get a really big manuscript, 500 pages or so just to get past your 400 page wailing. Pull it up in Plume and see what happens. I think it’d be a really a good test and great feedback. I’d do it but I’m not sure what you’re looking for in particular so it’s better if you do it.

  2. And people wonder why technical writers cling to Framemaker; 800 pages of enterprise-size LaserJet user manual with big graphic images? No problem.

    If only it didn’t cost to freaking much and Adobe hadn’t discontinued the Unix and Mac versions….

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