It’s been a week since I spent time testing out Beta 1 for myself. I figured it was a long enough time with enough adjustments to start to get external looks.
After playing around with it for a week I’m more excited. Consider it in the simplest way: Out of around 3300 paragraphs I’ve edited over 600. I’m near 20% in a single week!
The initial goal was simple, make NaNoE.V2 have the possibility to write, and edit, a novel. The editing is through a simple idea I had for editing. The focus is on edit suggestions you can customise for your novel, a way to search for the next paragraph that needs to be edited, and a way to mark a paragraph to be ignored in the next search.
As you can note from that:
- A way to adjust edit suggestions
- A way to mark paragraphs you ignore edit suggestions
- A way to search for the next suggestions locations
Take note, mark paragraphs to ignore in edit suggestions. That lead to the option to either, firstly go through manually and remove it from being ignored, or secondly, resetting them all so you can search from the start of the novel from scratch.
Please, be warned if you’re trying NaNoE.V2 for yourself, ticking and un-ticking the ignore marker on paragraphs resets the paragraph to the text it had before. Make sure you save before using it.
That being said I focused on doing the best job to make a simple interface, for simple use, and a lot of ease for your writing. Which is the exact reason I got an important person in my life, who never wanted to write before, to test it without me explaining the software at all. Well, besides pointing out it’s meant to be used to write novels.
The thoughts and suggestions I received from that for NaNoE.V2-beta2 so far:
UI needs to be adjustable, so it isn’t too small for someone. It might be nice to have suggestions for the spell checks, some people have difficulty spelling. It would be nice to perhaps have underlined words you can right click on for the edit suggestion help.R.P.
It brought my excitement, the first point, adjustable UI, I already have plans for. Consider dark versus light, I prefer dark so it was the first UI style I made, it will be possible to swap between them easily in the future. Similarly, for people who might have some trouble with the size I should point out I want to make it reliable for everyone. If anyone has trouble with small text there will eventually, somewhat soon, be a way you can change the size of the text for different styles you want.
My programming troublesome problem would be the idea about the spelling. Sure, it shows which words aren’t spelled correctly, it just doesn’t quite suggest things that could be useful for spelling it correctly. I wouldn’t know where to start in fixing that problem.
It was also clear for me to point out that I should put a marker somewhere to mention you can right-click on the edit suggestions to have the writing cursor move to it. I would love the thoughts and opinions about the edit suggestions style, the right-click for finding it, the double-click for more info, and such.
One thing that would be an amazing idea would be to move off the TextBox used at the moment into a different text input method. That way I can have it highlight spelling suggestions and edits instead of moving the cursor to them. It’s something I will look towards, I’m just not close enough to say much more at the moment. In the same way, others can suggest what they know for here as well.
The Main Things To Note
So, you can note that I will just share simple point in what is currently available in NaNoE.V2-beta2, which is downloadable on its page. The idea is that it should look, and feel, like software the absolutely anyone can start to use.
You will note, I don’t double check all of the possibilities, so make sure you back up your data. You will note in the starting screen it shares some thoughts on data, backup data you can retrieve, and always note: if you delete an element, it’s gone.
The idea for the UI can be seen able. The easiest is using <enter> to add a paragraph, you can add chapters, notes, and bookmarks. Yes! You can bookmark spots in the novel and move around easier.
It gives the total word count, which of course ignores the chapters, notes, and bookmarks. It also has the number of elements, so to speak, you can see there, the 3368. This refers to the position in the map of everything for you, just to make it easier to know where you are.
The map happens to be the back-end way we put things together in order in NaNoE.V2.
You’d have noticed in the image before, there’s a bookmarks button for you to use. You can create bookmarks, as you go along as well, for where you are in your edit. Take note, the numbers there are the ID of the element that’s shown. Take note, in the image below we move to the bookmark at 3378.
This is primarily to show you can easily jump around, firstly, this way you can either keep track of where you want to write, write different sections at different times, or even more. You’d probably feel this still feels as if it might be missing things, you’re right on 2 parts for what we can show today.
On the top right you can swap onto Edit Mode, it would edit the previous element.
Firstly, take note it’s disabled for edits for that bookmark I showed off, this is to point out the intention of the maps and bookmarks. So, normal writing elements, i.e. paragraphs and notes, you can edit for yourself if you ever need or want to.
This brings the second important feature to note, so we will take a look at the next paragraph I need to edit below that paragraph. I’ll have the arrow on the right clicked to show it off.
The original paragraph is in green, grayed out in this image, and the number of word where the suggestion is for in the paragraph is on the left of each suggestion in the Edit list. As a reminder, you can right click to take the cursor right to the 21st word for the Minimise ‘-ing’ suggestion there.
This was made to make it way fast for me to jump through the edit suggestions. Similarly, I can edit something out, then Refresh Suggestions. Then the important notice, you’ll Save Edit or it wont save. This is so you can play with words, leave for a few days after closing NaNoE.V2 and then you can start from scratch without having saved edits that might make you misunderstand it later.
The other note, is Next… It happens to jump to the next place it sees it can suggest an edit. That would beg the question of where can one decide what edits we want suggested for ourselves.
The set in Edit Settings for Beta 2 are my personal ideas for what I want to edit in my novel. They can be easily added or removed, so you can adjust them as you see fit for yourself.
Now, the important note, take note that the Edit suggestion list can be seen when writing.
It automatically spell checks words, I may need to adjust it a touch for the writing since it’s only when the word count changes in the TextBox, you can note it’s fast and just there to help you spell correctly. The idea is in Edit Mode you would want suggestions, in the Write Mode you want to focus on the novel’s plot. Write the story, we can adjust it later.
Lastly, I didn’t make a direct way to import old NaNoE formats, so apologies for that, however you can import an existing DocX. You should note, it let you know what you’ll need for the import to work properly.
Lastly, the point of sharing NaNoE.V2 in this state is to see writing and editing, it hopefully feels correct. Any ideas, thoughts, and suggestions will be welcome. We can easily make it an easier tool for everyone.
You’re welcome to pick up NaNoE.V2-beta2 (1.65mb) to try out for yourself.
While it doesn’t have the Helpers system implemented, it will come in the near future. It will be a way to make notes for your Chapters, Characters, and Other Items within the novel. Sort of like a dictionary for you to keep ideas for yourself.
Please, be sure to chat about it with me, I’d love to hear opinions, thoughts, and ideas.