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There are eight reasons why I have moved over to SEW

These eight writing functions can be found in other writing software. But for some reason, SEW just sits right. Maybe because of its clean lines and no bells and whistles. Or the way the interface is set out. Anyway on with the eight enticing writing aids of SEW…

The first and probably the most important reason to make SEW my new writing home is:

1. SmartEdit Editor:
For all forms of writing it is like having your own editor and proofreader with a click of a button. From repetition count to word usage and sentence length, I have not found software anywhere as good.

The last ebook I wrote (90 pages), SE picked up what I must have read over a hundred times without seeing a correction was needed. Just brilliant. As long as SEW doesn’t crash, and it won’t judging by the extent I have been hammering it - what else do you need in this writing software? Well maybe tagging ability.

2. SmartEdit for tags & keywords:
SEW doesn’t have dedicated tag or keyword ability and this is vital if you have hundreds of scenes/articles to avoid repeating yourself or to find a specific phrase or words etc.

The whole point of tagging and using keywords is to aid your memory in finding selected information. RightNote, while not writing software, does this better than any other product on the market. Or does it?

SEW does have a natty tagging feature unintentionally built-in. And the marvel is you don’t have to manually enter any keywords. The keywords are the words you have written. To find your tag or keyword apply a repetition word search in ‘SmartEdit Editor’ or search for a word through ‘Find in Project’, which also searches notes.

Do both forms of searching and the results are displayed on the left and right of screen. How good is that peoples!

3. Comment feature:
SEW doesn’t have a comment feature like Scrivener, which is well implemented. But you can use Find in protect - to view your comments. It’s a workaround that is quite good.

What I do is write my comment between two paragraphs, which is usually to add a link to future document or website post. It is a reminder comment. If I place a comment into a note it’s difficult to know what part of the associated scene/article the comment belongs. Too much scrolling and your train of thought is lost.

At the beginning or end of the comment I type ``` the grave accent, three times, which will list all my project or scene comments in the left pane.

4. Research function:
Do I need this function? After reading how to use it from one of Han’s posts on the forum it is even better than first thought.

My reason is I need easy access to word and PDF docs that I have previously published as a reference to my future website posts and ebooks. Click on the Research button and there they all are to reference - no frustration having to navigate to the documents location or fumbling around folders remembering where I put them.

Ten minutes to set the links up and they are there for the duration.

5. Find in tree:
When a tree has a lot of branches it can be tiresome trying to find a particular branch (scene).

Type in a word of a scene title and presto all those scenes are identified. This also helps to avoid having two identical articles/notes in the same project. You can double up unknowingly. Now you can remove notes you may have jotted down twice.

6. SEW corkboard:
There’s no cork board in Smart Edit software! But notes makes a good substitute.

Cascading notes is my new corkboard. Let’s say you have three notes open and one is in focus. On the one in focus, click on the restore next to x button and all three notes adopt equal positions for you to view.

An improvised corkboard that actually works very well.

7. Simple & page views:
This may sound too simple but I find a very good implementation of Word’s same feature. Page view shows you what the ebook or novel will look like in PDF and simple view hides white space to see how two pages connect together.

I always write in simple view and check how paragraphs, breaks etc will look in an ebook through page view.

8. Tabbed view:
I may have 4, 5, or 7 articles on my website that is a connected series, clicking through each article with a Next button.

For example defining strength, power and speed in endurance racing or injury prevention in running. Having five pages rather one long one is better for SEO to boot. It is also interesting for readers wanting to see what the next page’s content entails. The reading becomes an adventure.

Google Analytics reveals how far readers go in the series - hopefully to the end.

In the left tree pane is the entire project and across the top is the opened series I am working on. This way you can ignore the tree altogether.

How do you use SEW to its full potential?

That’s an excellent list, Rod. Especially number 3, about the three grave accents. I definitely will check this out and then implement it in my way of writing. :slight_smile:

Same goes for number 6, with the substitute for a corkboard. Never thought about it and will give it a try. Thanks for sharing these tips.


I am very new to the program and I would like to know if the ‘research’ function is needed when one writing a fiction short story or novel? I don’t think so. Thanks for your advice.

Hi Novelist,
Yes, you do need the research function in fiction too of course. Let’s say, you want to write a crime story with a murder happening in Oregon, USA. Whatever happens, you describe the police station, the detectives, the crime scene, and many other things in your story.

You need to have the location [and the facts] straight. The restaurants and hotels nearby, the areas where the witnesses live, and so on, and so on. All this can be done with searching the Internet, but falls in the section of research.
Same goes for a short story or a romance novel of course. You describe situations and write about locations. That, and many other things need to be researched to have the facts together when you write your fiction story.

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Hi Hans,

I appreciate your prompt response. Very helpful. I usually rely on my personal knowledge of the settings of my short stories and novels which, I believe, take the place of a formal research.