An experiment in writing in public, one page at a time, by S. Graham, I. Milligan, & S. Weingart

Our writing workflow

‘One of the sideshows was wrestling’ from National Library of Scotland on Flickr Commons; found by running this post through http://serendipomatic.org

1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 How do you coordinate something as massive as a book project, between three authors across two countries?

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 Writing is a bit like sausage making. I write this, thinking of Otto von Bismarck, but Wikipedia tells me:

4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 I was thinking just about the messiness rather that inspiring respect; but we think there is a lot to gain when we reveal the messiness of writing. Nevertheless, there are some messy first-first-first drafts that really ought not to see the light of day. We want to do a bit of writing ‘behind the curtain’, before we make the bits and pieces visible on our Commentpress site, themacroscope.org.  We are all fans of Scrivener, too, for the way it allows the bits and pieces to be moved around, annotated, rejected, resurrected and so on. Two of us are windows folks, the other a Mac. We initially tried using Scrivener and Github, as a way of managing version control over time and to provide access to the latest version simultaneously. This worked fine, for about three days, until I detached the head.

5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0 Who knew that decapitation was possible? Then, we started getting weird line breaks and dropped index cards happening. So we switched tacts and moved our project into a shared dropbox folder. We know that with dropbox we absolutely can’t have more than one of us be in the project at the same time. We started emailing each other to say, ‘hey, I’m in the project….now. It’s 2.05 pm’ but that got very messy. We installed yshout  and set it up to log our chats. Now, we can just check to see who’s in, and leave quick memos about what we were up to.

6 Leave a comment on paragraph 6 0

7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 Once we’ve got a bit of the mess cleaned up, we’ll push bits and pieces to our Commentpress site for comments. Then, we’ll incorporate that feedback back in our Scrivener, and perhaps re-push it out for further thoughts.

8 Leave a comment on paragraph 8 0 One promising avenue that we are not going down, at least for now, is to use Draft.  Draft has many attractive features, such as multiple authors, side-by-side comparisons, and automatic pushing to places such as WordPress. It even does footnotes! I’m cooking up an assignment for one of my classes that will require students to collaboratively write something, using Draft. More on that some other day.

Source: http://www.themacroscope.org/?p=42