How to Dictate Your Novel: An Introduction



I love the response that I've had to my more technical videos, my latest on Scrivener being the biggest hit. What I love even more, though, are the questions! I feel like I've stumbled onto a gold mine of people with questions on the more technical side of the writing life - like more tips on Scrivener or a post on dictation.


So by popular demand, I'm really excited to be talking about this week's topic! Since I've mainly given advice on the craft of writing, I planned to wait until people wanted those more technical videos and that time has come!


As always, you can watch my video below if you'd rather listen to me talk about this topic.



This week's post is going to be about the basics on dictation. I won't be going too much into depth on dictation today but I wanted to give a good foundation that we can build off of. If you like this post or have other specific questions, don't be afraid to let me know! These posts are always feedback driven so if you want to hear about something in particular, I'd be more than happy to do a post on it!



Dictation is the act of speaking your novel rather than typing it. There are a few different ways that you can convert your dictation file into a document but they all end in some kind of typed version of the words that you spoke. There are two main concerns most people have when they try dictation: their accuracy is low, and they have trouble remember to speak the punctuation. I'll go over those two issues in a minute!



The process of dictation involves the use of some type of microphone. You could use the microphone built into your phone, buy a cheap one or spend a lot of money on one. I spent about $100 getting an AT2020 USB Mic after using my computer's built-in mic and a $15 headset I bought at Wal-Mart. I used that cheap headset for an entire month before I could justify spending that much money on a microphone. There's definitely some cheaper options but I didn't want to upgrade slightly to have the temptation to upgrade again at a later date. But the important question: did my accuracy improve?


Tremendously! I was actually laughing at how well it did without even training my dragon. My speec