Saturday, July 12

Saturday Sum Up: Editing with Ivona Reading Software

This week has been a busy one.

I'm excited to continue polishing Ex Nihilo. Last week I've been able to cut about 1,200 words in the first 50 pages, so I'm really hopeful that as I progress from here I can shrink this novel down a size or two. It'd be nice if EN ended up at about 95k. It's not as great as 85k, but I fear that I would have to seriously sacrifice some content in order to make that happen. Oh, these first person POVs. They're always such a bloated bunch.

One of the new tools that I'm using is a text-to-speech program called Ivona. So far I'm really digging it. I'm the sort of writer who often doubles up or skips words when I'm writing. Having a computer-generated voice read everything back to me is proving incredibly helpful in picking out awkward phrasing, misused words, and missing/doubled words. Often, a writer's brain will just insert what is already missing or reorganize the words so that it makes sense. But Salli at Ivona doesn't have that problem. She gives it to me straight, with no extras in between.

So yeah. The diet seems to be working great.

Current Focus This Week:
+ Polishing Ex Nihilo

It's no real surprise what the focus is this week. Last weekend I managed to clear 50 pages. This weekend--though I appeared to have a slow start--will be to see if I can get through 100 pages. I've been traipsing all over Seattle the last few days, however, so I could really use the break of putting ass-to-chair and ironing out some minor wrinkles. The goal is to have it finished ironing by the next two weeks.

Then that's where the real fun begins. Are you excited? Because I am. :)

Photo Credit: Slaff


  1. Not familiar with that software, but I did a similar thing. First I converted my story excerpts into .mobi via Scrivener, which is the Kindle format, then I downloaded them to my Kindle. Then I read it on Kindle (the different layout can make a big difference experientially) and listened to the Kindle read it to me. Very helpful like you said, even if some parts sounded a little slow and robotic.

    1. I don't have a Kindle reader, but I've tried something similar on my iPad. After reading through and highlighting, I couldn't upload my highlights to my computer where I could implement changes. So for me it was a huge time-waster.

      I'm told, though, that you can turn on text-to-voice on iMacs and edit that way, but I haven't tried it yet.

  2. Yeah, I don't think you'd be able to move the highlights from the .mobi on the kindle to the PC for editing in word either. It's way more manual, but for me, not much different than printing out the whole draft on paper, and editing that way.

    1. :( I'm not so keen on the manual-heavy methods... I'm way too lazy.