Friday, September 26, 2008

PageFour - Outliner

I visited yesterday with the writer Cait London, a novelist with dozens of books in print, and she told me that one of the most valuable computer tools she'd found recently was PageFour -- "a good place to stash story ideas and develop them," she said.

"The sample is great to try," she told me. "I got it and a few other helper programs at and watch for the discount programs to be the special of the day. It saves in .rtf which is great, also Dragon works with it."

PageFour - Outliner and Tabbed Word Processor for Writers

PageFour is a tabbed word processor and outliner for creative writers. Where other word processors were designed with the business user in mind, PageFour aims to meet the needs of a different class of writer. It does not improve your prose or make you a better writer - only you can do that, but PageFour does make your job just that little bit easier.


Bob Sanchez said...

At $34.95, the price certainly is reasonable, but I am not clear on its advantages over other applications one might already have. Yes, we know that apps like MS Word have a zillion needless features, but it's generally easy to ignore them. The PageFour website makes a point of telling us what features it lacks, but I want it to tell me what it can do that the big boys can't or don't do, assuming I already use one of their brobdignagian products.

Cait London said...

I found Gary's post via iGoogle alerts :)

I got mine for $15 by watching for it on daily specials. I rarely pay full price for software and after 30 years of writing, the last 14 full-time, I use a lot of different kinds. This after being impressed by the free sampler with 3 Notebooks. It basically puts everything on your desktop at once, left column, a click bringing it to the screen without shuttling around files. If you work on multiple projects, books/articles/business letters and generate/build a lot of ideas, it's a good place to collect them, outline chapters and keep "screenshots" of important scenes for reference. Basically, you're not clicking all over the place for character lists, scene refs, etc., as they are all in one place. Great for the really productive writer, and I stash story ideas in it, ideas for titles, whatever. Recently, I had to go back over a 10-book series to review intricate details/threads and prepare for a possible 11th, and used PFO, a lifesaver. BTW, I also use Dragon for articles/blogging/PR/letters, not ms. But not everyone is going to need these programs. I just generate a lot of material/ideas of all kinds.

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