New Mac Programs: Scrivener

Scrivener (software)
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Well, this is the season…. To begin learning and using new programs.

I began this process with Scrivener. Although I have used it sporadically for occasional small products, I am using Scrivener now for a major project. One of my duties is to edit a bimonthly magazine. I am keeping the entire year of issues within one project, so I can quickly scan previous issues.

Within Documents, I have a folder called Yearly Schedule, and within it I have one document for themes for each issue, which includes deadlines for each phase. I also have a document with writers listed and articles they have written or will write for assignment. Then I have six more folders Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr, etc. Within each issue, I have a document for each page of the magazine.

As I receive articles, I put them into Research … obviously. Rather than move into the Documents folder, I copy them, that way I always have the original to go back to.

I have nearly finished all editing (and writing my own two articles!), and will send to the layout person. We have found that using Dropbox with individual files for each article is easiest (she is on Windows, does not have Scrivener, uses InDesign for the layout). So I export to .rtf, saving in Nisus Writer Pro, then copying to Dropbox. (I’m sure this can be simplified, but I need to make this work before I fine tune the process.

Just moving to this next step in using Scrivener has saved me considerable time. All my files are all within one application, easily found and rearranged. Whereas before I always struggled with getting to the articles, especially because people send in all kinds of formats. Even with writing guidelines, some people still don’t get it. But now, it doesn’t matter, I just import the documents as they come to me, and Scrivener handles the rest.

Best of all, with this new setup, I find it more inviting to edit the articles, which means I can more easily meet the deadlines!


Advent A OT (Series A)

Advent 3 OT (Series A)
Isaiah 35: The judgment on the nations in Isaiah 34 gives way to a vision of God’s restoring work in Isaiah 35. The imagery covers many aspects of change. The changed landscape (“wilderness and desert blossom abundantly”). Encouragement to those who are ready to give up (“Strengthen the weak”). Reversing the effects of sin (“eyes of blind opened… the lame shall leap”). The result is that Yahweh brings the people back to Zion, and they sing with everlasting joy.

For those in Judah who were experiencing and would experience the pain of separation from God because of their sin, these prophecies held out hope in “impossible situations.” How do we view something like this? To many of us in the U.S., who live in relative physical luxury, these promises of God’s restorative work do not excite much hope or passion for the future or God’s work. Yet when we strip away our masks and see ourselves and our lives as they really are, then we see that the future we planned is but a pale shadow of what God desires for our future.

God’s restoring work involves the totality of creation because everything was ruined in Adam’s sin (relationships with God, within ourselves, with others, and with creation). In Jesus, we see the fulfillment “in principle” (Voelz) of all these prophecies (see the Gospel reading). Thus, these promises are real and valid when seen in fulfillment in Jesus Christ. We will join in the everlasting singing going to Zion, God’s dwelling place in heaven.