Wishing you a Happy New Year filled with blessings from Gail Gaymer Martin at www.gailmartin.com
I have tried various tools for brainstorming plots and deepening stories, but I’ve usually given up and found the programs more trouble than they’re worth. One of the least expensive programs I’ve found and one you can even download free for a trail is Natural Reader, a text to voice program.
This program will read your manuscript chapters or scenes back to you so that you can catch typos and listen to the flow of your words. You can hear redundancies, wrong words (like meet instead of met), the overuse of a word, awkward sentences, words left out, and so much more. I use this program for my first edits. As I listen I use the highlighter to mark spots I want to rework and sometimes I make a simple change, such as a missing period or period for question mark, as I listen.
After all my edits are completed, I listen one more time to the chapters before sending it to my proofreader. Since I write for traditional publishers, these books are edited numerous times by my editor and the line and copy editors, but I prefer to send as clean a copy as I can, and a book that’s the best I can write.
They give you two voices—male and female—and three speeds of listening. The free download has limited amount of text the program will read at one time, and mine only had one voice which I didn’t like. I purchased the least expensive version for $49.95 and it’s been a lifesaver for me. If you’re interested, you can check it out at: http://www.naturalreaders.com/ I’ve found this software so helpful and if you don’t have a text to voice program, I think you’ll love it. It’s easy to use.