Grammar tools

kl
klchatel
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 3:19 pm Post

If Scrivener had comprehensive grammar tools, it would be the most complete writing program I have ever used.

I recently switched to mac and I am lamenting my loss of Wordperfect. I try to avoid MS Word like the plague.

I am trying out Scrivener as an alternative, but I am disapointed that there are not grammar tools or thesaurus. To me, these are integral to producing a quality draft.

In Wordperfect (and even Word), I use the thesaurus regularly and as a final polish I check the "readability" analysis that prompts for style problems such as passive voice or dangling participles. This is a powerful tool.

Wordperfect's thesaurus is the easiest to use. It has a small drop-down window that shows whatever word the cursor is on. Dropping down the window gives synonyms and clicking on one automatically changes it in the text. This drop-down window also works for the spell check.

I realize that Scrivener was designed to create a draft that could be polished in a word processor, but having strong grammar tools would eliminate the need for another wordprocessor at all.

Other than Word, I haven't found another word processor for mac that has grammar tools.

ho
howarth
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 4:21 pm Post

klchatel wrote:I am trying out Scrivener as an alternative, but I am disapointed that there are not grammar tools or thesaurus. To me, these are integral to producing a quality draft.

I realize that Scrivener was designed to create a draft that could be polished in a word processor, but having strong grammar tools would eliminate the need for another wordprocessor at all.


We've discussed this issue a lot in the forum. Scrivener is for organizing and drafting. Word-processors are for grammar, spelling, formatting, and other finishing tasks prior to printing and publication.

Currently, you may run Mac WordPerfect on a PowerPC or Intel machine. Here's a site to visit: http://www.columbia.edu/~em36/wpdos/macintosh.html

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alexwein
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 4:25 pm Post

There are also third party programs what help with grammar and spelling and the like. Do some searching on the forum, since this has been discussed and, to be honest, I don't know what many of those programs are, since I don't really use them (I find grammar 'helpers' to be rather annoying personally). But others have mentioned some that might be of use to you. Spell Catcher, perhaps??

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kl
klchatel
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 4:58 pm Post

Thank you, I'll try that one. I have tried NeoOffice, iWork and Abiword. None of them have grammar tools.

I used to think that the grammar tools were annoying too, because I felt that my grammar was excellent, but recently I discovered the readablilty option in spell check and I am now a convert. Not only did this tool help me tighten my prose (I cut 3000 words off a novel!) but it pinpointed those awkward phrases, you know the ones that have been niggling at you, but you don't know why.

Anyway, I guess I will have to use Word, as a back up program, though I would really like to see all these features in one program.

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KB
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:09 pm Post

It also might be worth checking out what Apple add to their text engine in the future, given that Scrivener will automatically get anything that is added to OS X updates... For instance, if OS X should offer grammar checking in its text system in the future, then Scrivener would offer that automatically. As for a thesaurus, the best thing to do would definitely be to look at third-party plug-ins, as a good thesaurus is a whole different ball-park. Remember that Word has whole teams of people working on different aspects of the program, whereas with Scrivener, there is just me for the whole thing. :)
Best,
Keith

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Khadrelt
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Mon Jun 11, 2007 7:17 pm Post

Nisus Thesaurus is good, and free. I've always had good luck with OS X's built-in dictionary/thesaurus, too.
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