The Psychology of Full Screen Mode

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Location: Recanati, Italy

Wed Mar 28, 2007 10:00 pm Post

Funny how the writing experience is different to different people. I find Full Screen mode extremely inspiring. That dark environment _is_ like my Linus blanket. Dark protects me from anything else.

As for settings, I find that Keith already prepared the right mixture of orange/amber in the Preferences. I love to work with that one. Just select "Override text color" in the Full Screen Preference pane, then move the color cursor all the way up. It remembers me the warm glow of astronomy programs.


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Thu Mar 29, 2007 7:46 am Post

alexwein wrote:So let's all bless dear Keith for creating software that accomodates all of us so well and offers so many wonderful options for how we might work!


Indeed, well said :)

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Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:35 am Post

Usually when writing I have Scrivener zoomed out to fill the whole screen, exclusive of the dock permanently berthed to starboard, with the inspector open and two windows split vertically. Outlines and whatnot are in one window; the document I'm currently writing based on those whatnots is in the other.

Once I figure out from the notes and outlines and index cards and review impedimenta what I actually want to say in the writing window, I can zoom out to a large view of it via one click of full screen. I might go back and forth three times in five minutes, or not come out of full-screen mode for an hour, depending on how long it takes me to lose the focus of what I'm trying to say.

It beats unsplitting windows and resizing and such, or writing in a claustrophobically narrow column, and it occurs instantly with a key combination I actually have a shot at remembering.

So it isn't the theoretically distraction-free zoniness of full-screen that I like, but the ability to instantly add writing real estate when I need it and make it go away, non destructively, when I don't.

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Thu Mar 29, 2007 11:08 am Post

howarth wrote:---
The outline is my itinerary. I need to be able not just to know but to see where I am in that process. Scrivener is the first writing program I've used that lets me have that reassuring visual experience in so many ways. Maybe one day I'll venture forth to the full-screen mode when a piece of writing calls for it.

I also love outlines (binder) structur, but more for organising. I have a lot of notes. But when I have to concentrate on the text the FS helps a lot. Especially comparing (extraxt and put tougehter) 2 notes.

Take a snapshot of one note - show snapshots
select the other note
go FS - set the paper position of that note to left (FS menue above)
now you have 2 notes side by side.
Now you can set with the scroll bar both to the same position. Perfect to correct two different versions.
(ok. im chaotic i have to do that often ;))

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Wed Apr 11, 2007 11:19 pm Post

For me, the only drawback to writing on the computer is all those distractions so readily available. From "just a quick game of Solitaire to let ideas caper in the back of my head" to popping up Safari for some unneeded research, only to get lost in Wikipedia Wandering. Sometimes you just have to focus on the task at hand.

I don't find the blank screen intimidating. It's a reminder of what you are there for. And you can see so much of it! I have a big monitor and I widen the sheet to cover the whole screen. Now I can see that the sentence near the bottom really works better nearer the top. Now I can see how splitting that paragraph will let me expand on both of them.

One of the great things about full screen is that it lets you focus on ONE piece of writing. I go back to the Binder when I want to rearrange and turn all the little pins the right color... one of these days I'll tire of that, perhaps. (':wink:')

But there's a time for fiddling and rearranging and there's a time to just pump out words. It's wonderful that Scrivener so smoothly transitions between these two states of writing.

It can be very seductive to hold onto the side of the pool and fiddle with what you already have. But sometimes the fiddling is holding you back from coming up with a new direction or new thought that is begging to be fleshed out.

That's when you let go and just head for the deep end.

A work in progress...