Atomic Scribbler is not a replacement product for PageFour. Where PageFour was a generalist product aimed at every variation of writer out there, Atomic is specifically designed for novel and short story writers. Academic writers will find it lacking. Journalists will find it lacking. Personal Information Manager users — many of whom were drawn to PageFour — will be frustrated by it. It’s not for them. Atomic was designed for one type of writer only, and that’s fiction writers.
I built Atomic to be feature light and a pleasure to work in. You won’t find every obscure feature of Microsoft Word or Scrivener in this software. You won’t find anything that isn’t directly useful to a creative writer. And that’s how it’s going to stay.
Atomic Scribbler is for early stage writing only. It’s for getting out that first and maybe second draft. It is not for polishing and carefully formatting your manuscript before sending it to a publisher — that’s what Microsoft Word is for.
A lot of functionality in PageFour is not in Atomic and never will be. There are no headers and footers, no page numbers, no password protected pages, no snapshots or Archive Manager. What Atomic does have is simple core functionality. It’s then up to the writer to decide how to best use that functionality in their workflow.
There are automatic backups, but you have to configure them and point them to your backup folder of choice. There is auto-saving, and it cannot be switched off. There are notes, which I love — everywhere there are notes — but you have to decide how to use these notes. There are Fragments, which I also love. But again, you have to work out how they fit in with your working style.
PageFour users should start by creating a new project and importing an existing PageFour Notebook into that project. This topic on the support forums outlines how to import PageFour Notebooks.
But be aware — any password protected PageFour pages will NOT be imported, and any sorting structure you had in place will be lost. Atomic Scribbler will import the contents of your PageFour Notebook, creating scenes and folders to correspond to your PageFour pages. You will then have to organise the project using the drag and drop functionality of Atomic to suit your needs. Your existing PageFour Notebook remains where it was, untouched.
Projects in Atomic Scribbler are not tied to one location as PageFour Notebooks are. They can exist anywhere. The default location is your “Documents / Atomic Scribbler” folder, but you can create them anywhere.
I don’t expect all PageFour users to show an interest in Atomic Scribbler, but the truth is this is the software PageFour should have been from day 1. I won’t be releasing any more updates to PageFour. The software and the technology behind it are old now. I have a detailed plan for the next few releases of Atomic Scribbler, though I won’t be sharing any of that until each new release has been completed, but the software is going to grow over time, and it will maintain its creatve writing focus.
The price for version 1 is $47. Users who bought PageFour in 2017 while Atomic was being built, check your inboxes.
There’s a 10 day trial if you want to try out the software — that’s 10 working days, not 10 consecutive days. Import your current PageFour Notebook, give it a try and see what you think. And let me know in the support forums or by email — feedback is always welcome!