Simplifying Writing Workflow

Dmitri Popov

Productivity Sauce

Feb 27, 2012 GMT
Dmitri Popov

Simplifying Writing Workflow

From time immemorial, I've been using OpenOffice.org Writer and then LibreOffice Writer as my writing tool of choice. I even wrote several custom macros and the Writer's Tools extension to make my writing workflow more efficient. But all these years, I've been using only a fraction of Writer's functionality 90% of the time. So I finally decided to leave the comfort of LibreOffice Writer and simplify my writing workflow by moving to a different tool set. After trying several text editors, I settled for Sublime Text. This text editor is not free, but it offers a slew of useful features like customizable keyboard shortcuts, code highlighting schemes, snippets, the ability to manage multiple documents, and spell checker. Oddly, the editor doesn't have a native word count feature, but the WordCount plugin fills the void quite nicely. The nano text editor now serves as a writing tool when I don't feel like using the mouse or a graphical desktop environment.

In Writer, I heavily rely on the Changes feature to keep track of changes made to documents. In my new workflow, this functionality has been replaced with flashbake, a versioning solution based on Git (I wrote an in-depth article on using flashbake and Git in general for the upcoming issue of Linux Magazine).

Finally, to replace the functionality provided by the macros, I use the excellent AutoKey utility with a handful of simple scripts.

Of course, I don't plan to abandon LibreOffice just yet: it can still come in handy in many situations like when working with long documents containing complex formatting.

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