May 14, 2022

My Adventures Writing My Books

By Veronica Jeans, Shopify Queen & Bestselling Author

I am so excited this week. I have finished writing my latest book, and now I am waiting for the editing to happen. My baby is being kicked out the is a scary moment. 

I am waiting with bated breath to wait for my proofreader - my fabulous DIL Amanda Jeans - is going to make sure I make sense of all my ideas and advice in the latest book :). This is a lot more difficult to write than my first few books, which are steps and guides to set up a Shopify store. WAY EASY! 

This book is more about the 'blah blah blah' as I call it...more writing and fewer images which means I had a lot more writing to do. I have learned so much during this adventure and quite a few mistakes, obviously. 

So today, I want to share the tools that I have used in all my writing adventures. I showed my students in my class on Thursday, and I knew this would be a fabulous Saturday Toolbox idea.

Grammarly - is a fantastic piece of software that keeps my English, Afrikaans, Dutch, and German grammar flowing correctly.  And Grammarly helps with my emails, newsletters, or whatever I write online.

WordTune - is a Chrome extension that helps to restructure and improve my paragraphs for a quick check. I use it to get a few different ways to structure my sentences. Again, WordTune is also in my - I am sure I have mentioned my AI software before, but I use it to create my blogs in ONE hour with the new wizard. But it also helped me to build my ideas and advice in my book because I started with the blogs where I have posted so much information that I could collate into my book.

Using writing software was another trial and error!

I started in Word (my first book) and then bought Atticus, which is amazing. I needed an easier way to write my books and have a quick overview of all the chapters, and be able to flick backward and forwards to the different chapters.

 It is a really easy software to use to write books and download the correct format to upload to KDP - Amazon.

My problem was all my images in my first few books - thousands and Atticus balked at the overload. 

Because I was trying to publish my books, I tried another software, Vellum. The only problem with Vellum is that it only works for Mac (which is not a problem for me), and you cannot download your book in a Word document.

But the great thing is that it will publish all the book formats you need Apple Play, Google Play, Kobo, Nook, and Print in the right trim book size.

The other problem with Vellum is that you can only upload your writing in Word format. Why is that a problem?

Well, this is part of my adventure as a writer. After I finished my first book in 2020 - Shopify Made Easy - my keyboard was sticky, and I took it to Apple to be fixed. I was warned that I needed to back up my hard drive before taking it to Apple. I did, but obviously, some of the files I forgot to back up. I did not have an automatic backup of my computer!! Yep, you guessed it, my hard drive was cleaned, and boom, no more files. Now, I only had a PDF format for my book, which is really not easy to update or edit.

Then somebody mentioned Scrivener, and I am in love. This is a writer's must-have tool. It is all about writing and making it as easy as possible to write.

Scrivener is really not as easy as Vellum or Atticus but has a lot more features that makes life so much easier while writing. So I use Vellum and Scrivener now to write my books.

A great comparison for Vellum and Atticus is on

I also have to tell you about my experiences with customer service with both Atticus and Vellum.

Atticus' customer service was amazing. The development team worked hard before Christmas so I could download my book - they were still in the Beta version, and I was testing Atticus for my book. 

Vellum's customer service advice was when Vellum would not save the updates and edits of my book - to crash the software and restart your computer! 

"If you're having trouble quitting Vellum, we'd recommend first checking for any prompts or dialogs that may be open. If there aren't any, and Vellum still is unable to quit, you can use Force Quit, found in the  menu."

Next, I will add a comparison of Vellum and Scrivener and if I can find Scrivener and Atticus.