Quite simply put: Horrible. Nothing like any Mac app I've seen (even since the early 90s). This is an application gone horribly awry. In my endeavor to find a better way to write, this app is among the worst if not THE worst. Stability? That of a pickle as a support column. Manual? Ha! Interface? You'd be better off using vi at the command line. Nothing to see here, move on.
I recently had to force quit Manuscript and discovered a manuscript I had been working on had returned to an earlier version...A version from many, many days ago, so this was not just a matter of losing unsaved changes. I've never seen this behavior in any other application, and frankly I have no idea how it could have occurred.
I truly like the many nice touches that Manuscript has (particularly the text sizing technique which is unique), so this is not meant to disparage what I view as a useful tool. (I'm a registered user BTW)
All I can say is Backup, backup, backup.
This is not an interface. This is a window riddled with buttons. If you want a real application, Hog Bay Notebook and DevonNote will do the trick. If you have money to just throw around, Ulysses will also work. This looks like a college project. I clicked "new chapter" and was offered to create a new chapter named, and then a blank space. I'm still not sure if anything actually happened. Next.
We're still getting the verify failed message on first launch. Also, the program puts a file named "xxx" in the /Library/xxx/xxx folder. (Directory names removed at the request of a developer -MU Staff) We don't know why it's doing that, but we find it disturbing that the program installs oddly named files in unusual places.
Developer: what say you?
I believe the file has something to do with the copy protection. Don't worry, it's not spyware or anything like this.
if you were unable to use the New command in 1.4 please download again, it is now fixed.
I think this is a great program. I have tried them all, from Mellel to Z-write, and
Manuscript demonstrates an acute understanding of how the creative mind works. Within 30 minutes of downloading it, I basically had the whole thing figured out, which is truly remarkable for a computer idiot such as myself. The notes drawer and autosave are great. As someone who sits in front of a computer way too much, I gotta tell you the simplicity of the ease by which you can magnify the text as well as the brownish tone of the background on the main page are a godsend to my overworked eyes. You can adjust the color, but I found the brown tone worked the best for me. And, at the risk of sounding like a simpleton, let me tell you my favorite feature. Writers spend way too much time alone. So there I was, typing, and I clicked on the button that enables your work to be read aloud to you, as a joke mind you, but after I got past the robotic sounding voice, I was hooked. I always write to rhythms in my head, but now I could actually hear whether or not what I was writing was working, rhythmically. You can also highlight a section and it will read only that passage, something I discovered accidentally, and I think maybe that should be mentioned in the help text somewhere. Anyway, it has made writing for me more of an interactive experience. Try it and see what I mean. As Einstein once said, “Things should be made as simple as possible, but not any simpler.” The artfulness of this program lies in its beautiful simplicity.
vive la difference !
love the style of this. As the blurb says its aimed at writers, not techies and for my money this hits the spot. Everything's visible so nothings hidden away in a menu. The margnal notes aren't perfect but its the first time I've seen this even attempted. Best of all its just so easy to write with, which sounds obvious but some programs I've looked at manage to make it complicated to actually write your text !
My G4 copes with the auto-save feature for chapters up to about 8000 words (haven't tried anything bigger).
The notes drawer is great because you can stuff in anything anywhere (as you do !) and then tidy it up later. One problem, though. It seems to be impossible to create new categories in a new document (its fine when you close the document and open it up the next time).
I hope the next release provides a few more features; I'd love to be able to highlight text. Also I'd like the chapter titles to be in bold in the formatted view.
For an aesthetic nazi such as myself, this program is one of the worst I've ever seen.
I refuse to use a program that just looks so horrid.
On top of that, just tooling around with it for a few minutes generates absolutely no interest to pursue this app any further. I couldn't even figure out where to start adding text, notes, anything of that nature. This app needs to emulate Ulysses' look and feel because as it stands now, it just looks like a brown stain on my screen. Just take what Ulysses does and improve it, because the developers of that app refuse to listen to user feedback and add extremely vital functions. If you did that I'd be the first in line to purchase the app.
I'm desperately searching for a creative writing app. But so far Ulysses is the only one I've found to be adequate. But that still isnt saying much.
Lots of work needs to be done here.
you mean it doesn't look like all the others ? i certainly hope not. ulyses is an absurdly over-priced clone of z-write; i certainly won't be following its example.
That's exactly right. The app looks nothing like them, and believe you me, that is only hurting your potential userbase. A 3 column system like most of the writing programs implement, is common because its the best way to have the writings, notes, and chapters organized. And none of the 3 column programs offers all the features I'm looking for. But why do I pay for them and not yours? Because yours looks like crap. Even if it offers the most amazing features known to man, it'd be super hard for me to deal with the brown color scheme/icons and the way in which you have everything set up as far as placement and organization. You have taken a very simple task and complicated it to unnecessary heights.
Looking at the download numbers your app is getting, I can see I'm probably not alone in this thinking.
Many nice small touches have been added. As someone with vision problems, I appreciate being able to write text in large print, then formatting in a separate window. While this will not do for the layout obsessed , for those with straightforward text needs, this is a remarkable tool.
It is still a BETA, but I experienced no stability problems. The faint line between the notes pane and the text pane is a welcome addition. My only wish is that the author would allow the user to individually hide/reveal the button bar, the notes pane, and the category fields to permit maximum dedication of the screen to text.
A small criticism is that the layout of the control buttons seems rather haphazard. A layout in a single line would appear to be suitable (and take up less space). Not a killer issue, by any means.
If you have serious control/layout issues, buy Framemaker, If you are writing straight text (no footnotes ) such as school reports, fiction or magazine articles this is a tool that shows a great deal of promise. All it needs is integration with a bibliography program, a spell checker, and a thesaurus to have appeal for the academic market.
A unique manuscript writing tool, the comments are based on the fact is is a BETA. It has a composition window (in which you can have a large print font you pick for readability on screen), then with the click of a button, you can put it into a print format with whatever font/formatting the publishers want. I think it shows a lot of promise. A serious bug is that the composition window extends below the bottom of the screen. Import and export need work. But as a writer, I love the fact that I can type in a big print window-and end up with a formatted document suitable for submission to a publisher without fiddling with zooms/fonts/layout. How nice. Hope that the developer perseveres, alas it's not ready for prime time.
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