E-Books Written on E-Readers, Anyone?

I started using purple pens when I started teaching. I think they’re friendlier than red!

I use my ipad mostly to read. It isn’t the best e-reader, in my opinion, but given how many other things it does, I am more than happy with it. I also like the ibooks reader better than any of the others I’ve seen, in terms of the options it gives you for note-taking, etc.

But in the course of writing my last novel, I decided to give editing on the ipad a try, too.

I have heard tales of writers who, even now, use notebooks and pencils to write their first drafts. I am not one of those. But when it comes to editing and proofing, I still prefer paper and a pencil. I used to do copy editing on a national magazine when I was in grad school and I did it all with a pencil and paper. There is just something about it that allows me to catch things I miss on screen. So rather than using various editing programs for the computer, I had always printed out hundreds of paper pages of my drafts and gone through them with my pencil to do edits.

I make at least three complete passes when I edit.

That was a lot of paper and a lot of printer ink.

So I browsed around and found an app called neu.annotate. It allows you to upload a PDF and then annotate it using a stylus. You can set it to a fine-to-thick pen line of any color or a highlighter of any color and you can adjust the opacity to obliterate your words, highlight them or anything in between.

It took a bit of adjustment to using the stylus and remembering which settings I preferred for my pen tips (and switching them back and forth as needed) but overall, I found that it was almost like using a pencil on paper, as far as my ability to see things I don’t catch when typing.

I think that when push comes to shove, I still like the paper and pencil better, but not better enough to use all that unnecessary paper and ink. So from now on, it’s ipad editing for me.

Have you tried something like this? What’s your review?


2 thoughts on “E-Books Written on E-Readers, Anyone?

  1. I don’t have an ipad or any tablet, so I’ve no experience with them. But for someone on the go, using a virtually office, it sounds like a useful tool.

  2. I use iAnnotate all the time for reading documents — I love that I can export my highlights to evernote.

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