iteration, process, prototype, kindleize

I’m enough of a meta-nerd that I’ve developed a bit of a system for juggling my desired text formats. My process right now:

* Write with a pure text-editor (TextMate, obvi) in Textile+HAML, a light-weight markup language.

* Run a script in the background that converts this markup to HTML so that I can see what it looks like live. I find it easier to find flaws in my text when it’s rendered in something prettier like styled HTML.

* When I’m done writing, run another script to convert the HTML to PDFs. WIth a separate print stylesheet, I can make printable cards. (Nothing professional, but enough to prototype/playtest with.)

* Finally, run another script that slices up the HTML in a different way, and run those through en eCub project to create a Kindle-friendly MobiPocket file.

So I carry a copy of the game text with me on my Kindle, and have some print-ready cards for making my prototype PDF.

As for the writing format: I originally was writing in pure HTML. In retrospect, perhaps I should have stuck with that and just used a WYSIWYG editor for my writing. (But I would have lost my nerd cred!!)

Yes, I have entirely over-engineered this setup, and probably spent a little more time on the display of things than I should at this point on the process! (Meanwhile, the look of my print-ready materials is surely amateurish.)

But it’s a cute process. Remind me to simplify it sometime into something more useful for everyone.