If I my paraphrase Jack Dalton for a moment. (Bonus points to those that know who I’m talking about)

Those that have been following me or reading my posts over the years likely know I use (and highly encourage the use of) Scrivener. Well the peeps over at L&L (Literature & Latte) also developed a mindmap tool called Scrapple.  Until recently it was Mac only but I had not yet had the chance to play with it.  Totally my bad (I’d swear it was iOS only but whatever).

They now have a Windows beta out that I grabbed and have been poking at a bit over the last couple days. It has drawbacks (some of which is me), but the biggest advantages that I’ve seen so far is that

  • Not everything has to be linked.  Meaning you can have more that 1 ‘root’ node on your map.  Awesome!  That’s been a pain in my side for a while because I tend to mind map even my software projects.  This allows the same freedom that a pen and paper does
  • It’s cheaper than most. There are mind mapping tools that have the same functionality (and more) than Scrapple but usually run in the $30 range.  While that’s not an insane price it does create an issue when I have to alter my work flow because the two apps don’t play well. Right now I’m using SimpleMind and exporting it to OPML and importing that into Scrivener.  It works great the first time, but if you update the map (by adding or removing nodes) you can’t easily sync the two. Which brings me to point #3
  • Scrapple and Scrivener are team mates. What that means is that I can create a bunch of nodes in Scrapple and simply drap-n-drop them into Scrivener.  For example I can create a map of all the characters in the story, then selected all the character nodes and drag them into the Characters folder in my Scrivening and voilà!, a list of characters.
Now there are some drawback that I have issues with.  If I drag in a note that has an attached note, I would prefer that the first note become a folder and the attached note become a text file inside that folder. This is especially useful for when I plot out chapters (or episodes) like below:


So for example in this case, if I dragged  ‘Fungi’ into the Characters folder in Scrivener it would create a Fungi folder and all the characters would be under that. Doesn’t even have to be a folder, just maintain the hierarchical structure I created.  Maybe this works in the Mac version, will poke at it this weekend maybe.

As it stands, I can drag all the episode titles into Scrivener and it creates notecards and text files ready for me to start filling out, so that’s something. And a sight easier than exporting and importing.


I will keep reporting on the progress as I learn how to make Scrapple do my bidding. Both for writing and for code.

Maybe even write a post or something about my own workflow and process.