Workflow for academic writing?

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flips
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Workflow for academic writing?

Post by flips » 2014-02-14 09:25:15

Hi!
I'm about to start writing on a lengthy academic paper.
(I tried searching this, but couldn't find posts that covered it, feel free to redirect me.)

The thing is, I'm wondering about the best workflow.

References/notes
For the references/notes, to keep track of authors and books, how do you guys go about it?
Do you integrate it with LibraryThing (is that possible?), or third pary tools like Bookends?
(Or is that more interesting for people who plan on writing lots of such papers?)

Workflow
In addition to using NWP, I also own Scrivener, and sometimes I used that extensively in the creatively in the first stages to get down different parts and restructure them before compiling and putting finishing touches on it in Nisus. The difference now is that I never had to bother about the references and notes before.

So how will such a flow work with making notes and references?

Do you do outline work separately and all the writing in NWP, or what does the experts say?

(Or is there just a lot of opinions among the Nisus users on stuff like this?) :D
flips :)

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Patrick J
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by Patrick J » 2014-02-14 12:27:34

I don't use Scrivener myself, I use Ulysses.

However I've read that EndNote can be used with Scrivener in an automated fashion and here is a website that describes how to set it up:

http://theplan.co.uk/scrivener-endnote-crib-sheet/

Personally, for longer writing projects I write entirely in Ulysses (or in your case Scrivener) and then when all the writing is completely finished I export to Nisus Writer.
Patrick

exegete77
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by exegete77 » 2014-02-14 15:49:03

I have Scrivener, Bookends, and NWP (and Mellel for my Hebrew work). This link describes how to set up Scrivener and Bookends.

http://tacet.wordpress.com/2012/06/21/u ... -software/
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flips
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by flips » 2014-02-17 03:44:25

Patrick J wrote:I don't use Scrivener myself, I use Ulysses.

However I've read that EndNote can be used with Scrivener in an automated fashion and here is a website that describes how to set it up:

http://theplan.co.uk/scrivener-endnote-crib-sheet/

Personally, for longer writing projects I write entirely in Ulysses (or in your case Scrivener) and then when all the writing is completely finished I export to Nisus Writer.
I'll check out EndNote. Thanks for the link.
It seems there's lots of bibliography managers out there ...
http://thesiswhisperer.com/2013/08/21/e ... hing-else/

On a side-note: I have Ulysses licence as well, why do you prefer it?
I seem to have Ulysses 2.1, but version 3 is out, it seems.
I think back then I went for Scrivener, as I needed to work with RTF both import and export. And I think Ulysses only works with plaintext/markdown? (Which might be fine for just writing from scratch.)
flips :)

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flips
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by flips » 2014-02-17 03:47:05

exegete77 wrote:I have Scrivener, Bookends, and NWP (and Mellel for my Hebrew work). This link describes how to set up Scrivener and Bookends.

http://tacet.wordpress.com/2012/06/21/u ... -software/
Thanks! :) I assume you think Bookends works well, too? :)

(BTW: Doesn't NWP play well with Hebrew? I've only used Greek in addition to English and Norwegian so far, no right-to-left yet ...)
flips :)

exegete77
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by exegete77 » 2014-02-17 07:53:31

flips wrote:
(BTW: Doesn't NWP play well with Hebrew? I've only used Greek in addition to English and Norwegian so far, no right-to-left yet ...)
Mellel is developed by two Israeli brothers. When OS X came out, Mellel could handle Hebrew and switching on the fly. It worked so smoothly that I continue to use it for that purpose. And except for a couple other points I might use it for almost all my work. Note: I use Nisus for many of my tasks, too. This comment isn’t a reflection against NWP.

Tough to teach an old codger new tricks. :D
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ptram
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by ptram » 2014-02-17 08:55:08

Flips,

For bibliography references I use BibDesk. There is no automatic updating of the references inserted in the text, but I could see that there is no need to update references so frequently. Yes, you can make a mistake or find a better edition, or add information, but it is very easy to fix the reference both in BibDesk and NWP.

BibDesk is based on a series of formatting templates for applying styles. While not intuitive, it is something that I've learnt to manage. Plus, for someone living in an anglo-saxon world, a ready-made template might already exist.

As for workflow, I usually start with diagrams, an outline, sparse text notes, and then start drafting in Scrivener, and then switch to NWP when the first draft has been written. Later restructuring is easy in NWP, by using the Navigator. At this point, you might be working on coarser details, so a section-based segmentation might work.

Paolo

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Patrick J
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Re: Workflow for academic writing?

Post by Patrick J » 2014-02-17 23:31:27

flips wrote:On a side-note: I have Ulysses licence as well, why do you prefer it?
I seem to have Ulysses 2.1, but version 3 is out, it seems.
I think back then I went for Scrivener, as I needed to work with RTF both import and export. And I think Ulysses only works with plaintext/markdown? (Which might be fine for just writing from scratch.)
Yes Ulysses is a plain text editor with minimalist markup. It does indeed work fine for just writing from scratch but you cannot import RTF into it as you could with Scrivener.

Personally I find Ulysses to be a truly great writing environment. I really like the minimalist markup. I think that as long as the markup is truly minimal then it is nicer to write with than putting in styles.

With the minimalist markup you are always applying styles in a consistent syntactical way. This means that on export you set the actual style and it will be consistent throughout the document.

Ulysses III is a totally rewritten application and works with iCloud.

There is I believe a weakness in the Scrivener design, but I will say immediately that Nisus Writer is the "cure" for that weakness.

With Scrivener you have RTF documents managed in a package. However Scrivener has no global management of styles in those documents. TextEdit (which Scrivener uses as the editor for each document) does have definable styles but these will not update all the documents in the Scrivener package.

If you decide at the beginning of your writing project to emphasise bits of text with, say italic, then later you change to doing this with an underline, in Scrivener you will not be able to update all the earlier italic to underline. I find that with longer writing projects I do change the styles used, often because I decide to use them for something else.

With Ulysses this is not an issue because you set up a markup for emphasis such as, *emphasis* and when you export you decide how the emphasised text is to be styled. Even if you decide to change the markup midway through your project you can do this with find/replace in Ulysses.

The issue I have raised with Scrivener is eased by simply using Nisus Writer as the word processor to export to because Nisus Writer has attribute sensitive searching. So when you export with Scrivener it is pretty easy to go through the document with Nisus Writer's search and resolve any styling inconsistencies and of course you can also apply dynamically updating styles in Nisus Writer at that stage.

Personally during the writing period I do like to apply the styles as (minimalist) markup and not be thinking about what the actual style should be.

I think that the best word processor to use with Scrivener or Ulysses is Nisus Writer because it is so good at cleaning up any problems that might arise from exporting from those programs.
Patrick

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