Hi, my name is Anand Modha, and I like to think of myself as a writer. Not an author (you’d have to be published for that,) but a writer. The reason I think of myself as a writer is because I love it. I love stories in any shape or form. It can be a book, film, cleverly written tweet or even some graffiti. To me, stories are the way we communicate our emotions to one another and language is probably still our greatest achievement as a species (suck it Internet!) of which stories are one of its purest expressions.
The kind people at Novlr have asked me if I would blog for them. They have asked me to explore stories as a whole, to think about why we write, story theory, tips from writers, the works! I think part of the reason I was asked was because my day job is in innovation, and the underlying premise of that is to understand how something works, so you can make it better. Before I embarked on my journey to write my novel, I did a lot of research. I read almost any book I could find on stories and why we engage with them. I read as much as I could about how to write a story. What people look for, and what they engage with, and I hope that over the next few months I can share these ideas and things I found to help you all on your journeys to write your great novel.
We get emails every day from you guys telling us what you’d like to see in Novlr, how the tool’s working out for you, what you love about it, what you’d change and what we could be doing better. Novlr wouldn’t be at the point it is now without your help and we appreciate your feedback so much. We’re always asking you all that to get in touch and give your feedback as it’s the only way we are going to improve the app. We thought we’d share an awesome email we got the other day from one of our users, April, who put a smile on our faces.
I just want to say thank you! I am a self-published author (if you could call me that), but I haven’t written much of anything in several years. And by “much of anything,” I mean anything at all. Life just got in the way, in the way a good way. Every once in awhile, I’d sit down and try to write and come up completely blank. I work best without thinking too hard. At least in the beginning. Later, as the characters take shape and their stories develop, I can sit back with a less vague idea of what will happen. But even then, I don’t truly know the end until I get there. Even so, for far too long, I couldn’t get any words to stick. Then just recently, I started with the tiniest, most vague idea ever in my head. I can’t remember whether I saw something about Novlr on Facebook or whether I Googled something, but all of the sudden, there was Novlr, and I was writing again. There are many features yet to come that will make this an even better web-based program, but as it is right now, I am impressed. I love the Versions, and I love that as long as I have the internet, I can hop back online and keep writing. Cheers to The Cloud! And on top of that, I can backup automatically to Google Drive??? Seriously amazing. I don’t have to carry around a USB and pray that whatever computer I come across next has Microsoft Word. ANYway, thank you. So much. I hope you’re around for years to come.
So, thanks April, for spreading your love of Novlr :)
Novlr just got better – as it does every month.
We’ve been listening. You tell us what you need and we build it. Have a watch of our summary video or scroll down and take a look at some of the new features – there’s chunky ones and mini ones – they all make a difference.
Evening and night modes
A lot of you write day and night, and many of you asked for a softer colour scheme for the long nights. So we did some research, took on your ideas and voila: evening and night modes.
Curly quotes and em dash
Some of you are very particular about having a certain ratio of curl in your quotes…so now you can.
Who needs commas, parenthesis or colons? Just em dash it by typing two dashes in succession.
We are continuously improving the exports as they are complicated beasts. So this month:
- Notes can now be included in export
- Strikethrough and underline work in pdf
- Page breaks after chapters
Take the tour
Novlr is adding features so quickly we need to make sure everyone who joins gets an introduction to them. You can try it in Settings > Help.
Cleaned up chapters
We cleaned up the chapter sidebar a little. Aesthetics matter when you’re using a tool as much as we writers do. There’s more important changes to the chapters coming soon too…
Click onto a line
This one was a pet peeve of mine (Thomas). It was difficult to click on the beginning of a line. You had to get it exact. Well not any more…now you can click a bit to the left. It’s the small details sometimes.
We’ll be releasing new features every month.
Influence what we build next by adding your votes to the features roadmap and discuss how you would like to see them built. Can’t wait to see what comes next.
Good luck with the writing – and thanks for using Novlr.