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iCloud Sync

When does Writing Shed sync your work: answer, when you activate/deactivate the app. There is also a Synchronise Projects command in the Projects menu. Choosing this forces the app to sync your work.

It is natural to assume that synchronising your work across devices takes place, if not instantaneously, then at least within minutes. Well, it is never instantaneous, but it quite often takes place within minutes, if not seconds. But, and it’s a big but, it can take much longer, sometimes hours.

This might seem odd, you muse, because, well, my iPhone and iPad are both next to me and my desktop Mac is in the next room…

The trouble is that your work has to travel through the Internet on its way to your other devices and that lays it open to network delays and iCloud delays.

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Sorting Scenes

Tip: How to sort scenes assigned to a chapter

Scenes are arranged in alphabetical order within chapter. Scenes that have not yet been assigned to a chapter are listed as unassigned. You cannot change this from the scene view. What you need to do is open the chapter view. At the bottom of the view is a sort button that lets you reorder chapters. If you select a chapter you will see the scenes assigned to the chapter. Choose edit mode and you will given the option to reorder the scenes. This order is not reflected in the scenes view.

On my ‘to do’ list I have a task requiring me to enhance the scene view to allow you to reorder scenes within chapter and also reorder chapters. I think this should simplify the interface.

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Using Help

Tip: Using help

At the top of most views you will see a button with a question mark inside it. If you tap this a number of help hints will appear around the screen. Those filled with yellow are just hints. Those filled with blue are also links to more information. Tap one and another view will appear

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I guess lots of writers, particularly poets, handwrite their early drafts. I certainly do. Since creating Writing Shed though I have started using Notes Plus, a brilliant handwriting app, to produce my initial drafts. When I am ready to add the text to Writing Shed I simply tap a button to convert the handwriting to text. I then copy the text and paste it into a new draft in Writing Shed. There are usually mistakes in the conversion, but these are easy to correct. If your handwriting is clear then the number of conversion mistakes will be small.

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Text Display

TIP: Text Display Size

If you were to display a 12-point font on an iPad it would look very small, and could be difficult to read. You might think increasing the font size would do the trick, and it would, but would also affect the size of printed/exported text. To overcome this Writing Shed lets you change what it calls the Display Scale %. This is the % amount increase/decrease that the app applies to displayed text. By default this is 150%, so 12-point text is displayed as if it was 18-point. You can change the value by visiting Settings/Default font.