Considering Mac to iPad switch — features?

Sh
Shell
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 1:31 pm Post

I have been using an iPad Pro (12.9) in anger now for about a week and the experience has been pleasant. I’ve had to make a few minor adjustments to how I work, but I think it’s a mostly superior writing experience, from a focused writing point of view... there are far fewer distractions :)

Issues / Observations
* No way to learn spellings (that I can find) within the app, which is a real pain given the range of international names and technical terms in my current WIP. I’m not sure how to solve this yet.
* Weird issue where no spellchecking was going on _at all_. iOS just forgot to do it. Had got toggle it on and off again in iOS’s own settings before that worked.
* For some reason, creating a new document in iOS paragraphs are spaced at 1.3. On desktop, 1.1. I can’t find any way to change the default. I think I actually prefer 1.3, but the inconsistency is annoying. I’ll have to go through the entire WIP.
* The lack of built-in backups worries me, but I guess I am working on DropBox so...

Big wins

* Enabling voice in iOS accessibility magically adds “speak paragraph” selecting text, which is really lovely for editing. Easier than desktop, for me anyway.
* Lovely, distraction free UI
* I can type full-speed on the folio case keyboard
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br
brookter
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:02 pm Post

The spacing control is in the Format dialogue (paint brush) - there are three tabs at the top: style, indents, spacing.

To make them the default for new iOS documents, format a paragraph exactly how you'd want it, then go back into the format dialogue, then choose Style / Formatting options / set as default.

Short of going through every document and 'select all’ then Use Default Formatting, I don't know of a way to convert old documents to the new style so I’d do that on the desktop.

(Obviously the short cut to all this is to format the default properly on the desktop, then in iOS just choose one of those paragraphs and set it to be the iOS default as well. Just make sure you're using the same font on both.)

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brett
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:39 pm Post

Shell wrote:I have been using an iPad Pro (12.9) in anger now for about a week and the experience has been pleasant. I’ve had to make a few minor adjustments to how I work, but I think it’s a mostly superior writing experience, from a focused writing point of view... there are far fewer distractions :)

Congrats, Shell! I do know that plenty of writers, including your countryman Matt Gemmell, are happily writing highly structured novels using only iOS apps like Scrivener and Ulysses. Even though I have a smaller iPad Pro (9.7”), I find myself starting and finishing more and more writing projects using iOS Scrivener only, particularly those that don’t require lots of other notes or research docs, precisely because of the fewer distractions you mention.

I’m curious to see how the next version of iOS, which is predicted to bring more multitasking and other Mac-like features to iPad, will affect how we use Scrivener in particular and writing in general on iOS. Finding that balance between fewer distractions and sufficient power will surely mean that we writers (and of course app developers like Keith) will have to make more choices about how configure our workflows and use newly available features. Please keep us posted on your evolving experience, with more nicely specific reports like this one, and good luck with your projects.

Ji
JimRac
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:24 pm Post

Shell wrote:* The lack of built-in backups worries me, but I guess I am working on DropBox so...
As I mentioned upthread, while it is true there is no auto-backup, iOS Scriv can still generate zipped backups and send them pretty much anywhere you like (iCloud, OneDrive, email, etc.)

From iOS Scriv project list screen: Press Edit > Select project > Press Send a Copy (upward arrow in box, lower left corner) > Select your target > Press Upload Here.

It sounds like you already realize that DropBox is insufficient for backup purposes, but just in case you don't, please read this thread: https://www.literatureandlatte.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=53&t=56804

Don't be that person. :( Threads with "I had a syncing issue but I have no backup and I must scream" pop up here far too often, that's just the last thread I can recall seeing on that sad topic.

I urge you to habitually generate a zipped backup after every iOS writing session.

Best,
JIm
I’m just a customer.

Sh
Shell
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:15 pm Post

JimRac wrote:
From iOS Scriv project list screen: Press Edit > Select project > Press Send a Copy (upward arrow in box, lower left corner) > Select your target > Press Upload Here.

It sounds like you already realize that DropBox is insufficient for backup purposes


Oh dear, feeling for That Person.

Anyway, thanks. Previously I was manually backing up, but I always had an additional safety net: all my cloud-stored files wing their way back to a home server which is in turn continuously streamed to BackBlaze’s backup service. Paranoid, me? Well once you lose a manuscript, you become kind of obsessive about these things... :roll: Thanks for the tip! For on-the-fly backups (given my writing “sessions” are hours snatched here and there), this looks like excellent advice. Just gave it a go, and verified the resulting zip landed on iCloud.
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Inkygirl
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Tue May 28, 2019 12:54 pm Post

Chiming in here...

I have been working primarily on my iPad Pro when it comes to writing my middle grade novel. I used to use my Mac desktop version and occasionally do some novel writing there (mainly when it comes to reorg stuff not easily done on my iPad).

Reason I made the switch:

Less distractions when using my iPad. I try to do my writing first thing in the morning, and usually do it at the dining room table, before heading down to my basement office for my regular/contracted work (I write and illustrate picture books for a living).

I travel a lot, and want to keep writing when I do. Being used to writing on an iPad makes it easier to get into the environment headspace right away, rather than waste precious minutes trying to adjust to the differences re: iOS Scrivener and Mac Scrivener.

How I use it:

I am almost always using split screen. On the left, I have Scrivener open. On the right, I usually have Notes open, or iBooks (I’m going through John Truby’s writing book), or other reference.

I’ve seen in the forums that there IS a way to have two Scrivener documents side by side on my iPad Pro, but also seen that this can be buggy, so I haven’t yet tried this but plan to figure it out.

One thing I’ve learned: to always make sure to do syncing before closing the app and switching to another device.

Thanks for everyone’s input in comments above!

Debbie
(longtime Scrivener user)
Debbie Ridpath Ohi - DebbieOhi.com - Twitter: @inkyelbows
Children's book author and illustrator

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brett
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Tue May 28, 2019 6:17 pm Post

Inkygirl wrote:
I am almost always using split screen. On the left, I have Scrivener open. On the right, I usually have Notes open, or iBooks (I’m going through John Truby’s writing book), or other reference.

I’ve seen in the forums that there IS a way to have two Scrivener documents side by side on my iPad Pro, but also seen that this can be buggy, so I haven’t yet tried this but plan to figure it out.

Maybe because I have a small (9.7”) iPad Pro, I tend to use Scrivener ‘s Quick Reference to display my notes and references alongside the text I’m writing instead of split screening with Notes. Maybe worth a try. Glad you found a system that works for you.