The Traveling Cure (for Writers)

Now that Adobe has become a provider of subscription software rather than a mere seller, it’s devoting more attention to the overarching purpose of its entire suite of applications—creating something new. In fact, their user magazine was recently renamed Create. You can find it here:

The latest issue has an interesting article on someone who transformed a health issue, chronic back pain, into the opportunity for a new career. Here are the opening paragraphs: … _cure.html

Here’s his photography:

Take note that his lifestyle solution isn’t limited to photographers. It could just as easily be adopted by a writer who travels and writes either about the places and people he meets (non-fiction) or composes novels in those settings (fiction). Like photography, writing is one of the few jobs you can manage anywhere without the messiness of getting a work permit for a particular country. Both illustrate that countries typically don’t try to regulate what in the end they can’t regulate.

As a photographer, he’s able to take advantage of Adobes’s special $10 Creative Cloud plan for photographers that features Photoshop and Lightroom. My hope is that in the not too distant future Adobe will offer a similar plan for writers featuring InDesign and Lightroom, with book templates making is easier for authors to cope with the feature-rich complexities of ID.

If you’ve been thinking about abandoning the horrors of Word for a professional-level app for laying out print and epub books, there’s a discount on the single app plan, which is only $16/month and is good until November 27.

Scrivener to InDesign without Word is a good workflow. It’s the one I use. One reason I am so upbeat on seeing a writer’s plan for Creative Cloud is that Adobe is developing easy-to-use website tools for “creatives” to host their work. It’d described here, with some samples linked:

While intended for visual arts, it works quite well for books. I’ve yet to finish my website using Adobe’s new tools, but here’s the one I created using their clumsier but still attractive older tools:

You can see how I used my cover and interior pages to showcase the book. Adobe also allows me to export the book itself—or a sample—directly from InDesign to webpages they host. What’s posted is virtually identical to the print version. Here’s my latest: … e8f0ce19ab

Click on the arrows that pop up on the right to page through the book. That is a good way to offer readers samples and reviews an online copy of the entire book with no shipping costs. And it comes with that Creative Cloud membership.

At the moment, some other professional work I do means I can justify that normally $50/month full plan (mostly for Photoshop). But long-term I’ll need to pull back into a single-app plan. I just don’t have the time to use all the apps that come with the full plan. Only a Leonardo da Vinci could manage that.

I like InDesign so much, I’d love to see more writers adopt it, but that $50 or even $20 cost is a bit much for many of them. That’s why I’d like to see a $10-15 author’s plan offered. As with the photographers plan, the savings might get enough additional authors to sign up to make up for the reduced price.

Paired with Scrivener for content creation, it’d be perfect for independent writers.

–Michael W. Perry, Inkling Books