Interesting New Yorker article

A friend recently pointed me to an article called “Structure,” by John McPhee, in the January 14, 2013, issue of The New Yorker, pp. 46-55. (You can pay $5.99 to access this issue online at, but the interface does not encourage extended reading or printing, IMHO.) McPhee talks about the importance of structure in “factual writing”: “A compelling structure in nonfiction can have an attracting effect analogous to a story line in fiction.” He recounts a variety of his own experiences in structuring his works, including one in which he organized a book by laying out 36 note cards on a large piece of plywood. Sounds familiar, eh? I don’t believe he mentions Scrivener, though he discusses other software. It’s an interesting read, and no doubt suggestive for how Scrivener can be put to good use.