I don’t usually talk about my software here (anymore), but I had to post this because some of you might think it’s cool.
Between now and the end of NaNoWriMo, my writing software StoryBox is $20 cheaper than normal. Only $14.95!!! If you don’t know what NaNoWriMo is, it’s National Novel Writing Month, where people try to write a novel in 30 days. It starts Nov 1, and ends Nov 30.
Not long after that last update, I became ill, and then Thanksgiving happened, and then problems with StoryBox crept up and I had to deal deal with them. What that means is that Moony isn’t done yet, and neither is Questioner’s Shadow. I’m really annoyed they’re not done, but they are getting closer, and that’s all that really matters.
The first two things in that list I could do nothing about. The third thing was, and still is, under my control. I thought the 1.5.126 release was simple and wouldn’t have any real issues. However, I was wrong. I forgot a single line of code, so I had to release 1.5.127. And then there was another bug that someone noticed, where I had again forgot a line of code, which led to 1.5.128. The next build came about when someone had an error which led to the notes being overwritten. That took me two days to figure out because it only happened on her machine.
I spent days working on StoryBox, days that I could have been writing.
And here’s the thing. If I’m lucky, I get three or four sales of StoryBox a month. Yup. Time I spend on StoryBox is not paying off financially. Not even close.
When I started StoryBox, I started it because I wanted writing software that worked the way I wanted it to work, and I wanted it on the PC. At the time, only Scrivener was close to what I wanted, and it wasn’t available on the PC. The key, however, is that I was creating a tool so that I could write. I wasn’t creating it to make money.
That’s still true today. StoryBox is only available for sale because I figure that other people might benefit from it. I’ve never wanted to be one of those writers who wrote some software and then made enough money that they chose to become software developers instead of writers.
I’m a writer who happened to make some software.
So, I am announcing that I am taking the next year or so OFF from StoryBox development. I will still fix any bugs that are found and are critical, but I will not be adding new features in 2012. This is not the end of StoryBox. It still works, and it has all the features I need.
This is an effort to concentrate 100% on writing and publishing new books. I’m trying to free myself from distractions, and StoryBox has become a distraction.
Again, this is not the end of the line for StoryBox. It already has all the features I need for writing and publishing novels.
– One exception to the new features embargo. If/when Amazon releases an updated KindleGen, I will add support for it.
– I reserve the right to change my mind about new features if there is something that I determine I absolutely need to write or publish any particular novel.
It’s been over a month, and I’m sure some of you are wondering what’s going on. Look to the right. See the progress meters? They’re getting updated finally.
Mendleson Moony is now moving along smoothly. I’ve written over 11000 words this week alone. If all goes well and I judged the final length correctly, I’ll finish the draft right around Thanksgiving (probably the day after).
I’ve started the final edit of Questioner’s Shadow. I’m currently editing about two chapters each evening. I’d like to push that to three, if I can, but at two chapters a day, I should be done with it in a couple weeks. Then it’s time to do the layout, order the proof and do the final proofread. I’m going to try to push that as much as I can because I’d like to have paper copies available for the holidays so that I can give them away as presents.
You may have noticed that the Fragments progress bar has disappeared. I took it down because I’m not actively working on it. However, it will go back up as soon as the draft of Moony is finished. Seeing as how it’s the sequel to Shattered, I’m hoping to have it available for you before the end of March. It’s not a firm date. I have to write the thing, order the cover art and hope the artist can deliver it on time, and get it edited and formatted. And, let’s face it, I haven’t had a track record of finishing a novel without taking a break somewhere in the middle. However, it IS coming, and it’s the next project in the pipeline.
And the last thing. I’m no longer posting software updates here. Bookmark this link if you want to be informed of updates and have the automatic update check turned off. You could also follow me on twitter (@mark_fassett) if you want. I tend to announce them there.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, my cat just vaulted onto my leg with claws extended. I must go tend to my wounds.
I’m really beginning to hate that my blog is so full of these release notifications. I think I’m going to move them to a separate blog or something. I’ll let you know.
Anyway, this is mostly a bugfix release. It does have a new Emerald them, though.
There are quite a few changes in this release, but the biggest one is that it now requires .Net 4.0 in order to run. I’ve tried to keep it using .Net 3.5 for as long as I could, but it became impossible with the latest release.
As for other changes, if you tell StoryBox where to find KindleGen on your computer, it will now produce a .mobi file when you tick the “Prepare For Kindle” checkbox in the export options. You can download KindleGen from Amazon.com (the easiest way to find it is to google KindleGen). StoryBox also now lets you insert SB code via the document context menu to link to pictures documents so that they will be included in your exports. This is useful for graphic chapter headers or interior illustrations.
Check the release notes for the other changes while you are downloading.
So, I know I said it would be a month, but someone pointed out that I forgot about the smart quotes in full screen view. I couldn’t let that be a problem for a month, so here’s an update. If you aren’t using smart quotes or full screen mode, you don’t need to pick up this update if you don’t want to.