[Video] Easier Writing in Gingko App, the Most FLUID Writing Environment Imaginable


It’s been a long while since I’ve been able to post. My thesis deadline is fast looming, and so this will likely be my last post until I finish my thesis and finish presenting in Spring of 2014.

I’m going on hiatus with a bang, though: Below is a very quickly-made video of how I’m using Gingko App (you’ve GOT to see it) to do the Single Method of Academic Writing, which Dr. Single outlines in her book “Demystifying Dissertation Writing.” Her method is a game changer. You want to know about the method. 🙂 Gingko App makes it SUPER FLUID. But, even if you don’t use her method, Gingko App is still just an amazingly fluid writing environment.

ASIDE: One thing I left out of the video is how easy it is to create the quotes in Citavi by just highlighting the quote in the PDF preview displayed in Citavi, and then pasting the quote into a Citavi quote bubble. This makes quote-gathering a BREEZE!

Well, I hope you enjoy the video. (Click on the little square in the lower-right corner of the YouTube video to expand it fully to a large view.) Please feel free to post comments and/or questions. Take care, and as always, happy writing!


5 thoughts on “[Video] Easier Writing in Gingko App, the Most FLUID Writing Environment Imaginable

  1. Hi,
    Just come across your site. Thanks for the many useful tips. I was just wondering would you choose Gingko over Scrivener? If so then why? Or would you use both for different features? I’ve just purchased Scrivener & wondering if Gingko would be a better or worthwhile addition while also considering the expense involved. Many thanks.

    • Hi, Joey! Thank you for the question.

      I’ve spent a little more time now with Gingko, so in short, here’s what I’d do:

      1. If on a Mac I would see if I could approximate in Scrivener what Gingko allows. I am using a Windows PC, and in Scrivener Windows, currently one cannot move an index card to just any spot. I think you can do that in Scrivener Mac. If so, if I were you I’d test whether for you that functionality would suffice to approximate the free-flowiness of Gingko. All that said, I would definitely keep Scrivener and not try to replace it with Gingko. Since there is a free version of Gingko, I think it would be worth your time as a brainstorm-writing type tool. The mind mapping capability in Docear would permit the same, though.
      2. If on a Windows PC, still I would not even THINK of replacing Gingko with Scrivener. As you will soon discover, Scrivener is UBER robust. Words can hardly express!

      I really love Scrivener but have since stopped using it to DRAFT in: I only use it as a repository for honed drafts of sections (and subsections). After I’ve completed sections (using other software), I paste the sections into the appropriate place in Scrivener. Over time, my Scrivener file gets filled with the honed sections and subsections for a complete, honed draft. This keeps me on track.

      Why I ceased drafting in Scrivener: Determining how I best write was hard-won. I have ended up basically flexibly implementing this advice/method/process (ignore the title) with and in Citavi (a Windows program, so Mac folks run it with Windows parallel). THE THING ABOUT CITAVI: Citavi can be embeded within MS Word such that your outline and knowledge items (notes, quotes, paraphrased quotes, thoughts, comments, etc.) are all attached to the “right” place on your outline, and you can see all of this from within MS Word! And . . . when you use a Citavi knowledge item from within Word, Citavi dynamically starts building your reference list or bibliography in Word.

      Here’s a video showing the better part of this, somewhere toward the middle or second half: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YoZd_j0AdG4.

      So here’s the whole strategy:

      • I prewrite in Citavi (i.e. note-take, quote-extract, and produce a detailed outline that functions as a road map, is based on the notes I’ve taken in Citavi, and brings the notes/quotes/thoughts along to Word attached to the outline in the “right” place).
      • Then I open Citavi inside of Word and quick-write using all my Citavi prewriting knowledge items that are just right there to be clicked on (to add to the draft) or simply viewed for discussion or paraphrasing (can easily be cited to maintain dynamic building of the reference list or bibliography).
        NOTE: Quick writing in Word only works for me because my outline is sufficiently detailed (see the document attached above). Citavi enables me to get my outline to that state, because as I note-take and quote-extract in Citavi, I write my outline in more and more detail.
      • I save my quick-written draft. If in the quick-write process I get stuck at some point and can’t quite quick-write, I turn to Gingko. I copy and paste only what I need (typically prewriting knowledge items including small copies of table, figures, appendices) into Gingko. I freely think-write next to all of the prewriting content until I work my thinking out. It’s a messy process usually at first, until over time I finally start seeing what I need to say. Lots of sketch-writing, dragging and dropping of prewriting items and sketch-writing, musing, rephrasing, etc. It eventually gets worked out!
      • Once I work that section out, I make sure to replicate it in the Word quite-write file, careful to add in the citations so that my bibliography keeps building appropriately.




      • There are many ways to hone. You could save your quick-written draft in PDF format, open it in Scrivener, and configure the Scrivener word processor to have two columns–a blank one next to the on containing your quick-written PDF draft. Hone in the blank column while looking at the quick-write.
      • I prefer to mainly stay in Word for honing because of the citation and auto-build of the bibliography. So often I create a two-column table in Word, put excerpts of the quick-write file in one column, and hone next to it.
        But if I need to do a LOT of serious revising (it’s rare because I’ve followed the advice in that document linked above), I have had success with many different techniques: Save it as a PDF, open it in Mendeley or Adobe, and annotate on it to my heart’s content. Open it in Scrivener, reverse outline it to see the logic of it, hone there in Scrivener using versioning (snap shots), etc.


      p>The one problem with using Gingko app is loss of formatting and dynamic citations. Loss of dynamic citations (that auto-build your bibliography) occurs in Scrivener even, if you are copying and pasting from Word to Scrivener (or at least it did when I last was trying to rough-draft in Scrivener). This is why, now, I mainly just use Scrivener to store honed drafts, for the purpose of alerting me to what’s done and what’s not, basically. It’s nice to be able to compile the Scrivener file at the end. There are ways, howver, to deal with citations in Scrivener.

      I hope that helped more than confused! Please let me know if I can clarify or if you have questions.

      Good luck choosing your workflow strategically! Let us know what you end up trying!



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