Tech Stack for Dictating

Learn to dictate to save time

I've been dictating first drafts for years. If you learn how to do it, it'll save you a ton of time on first drafts. More on the "how" later, but let's talk about the tech stack first. 

Here's my sequence:  Windows 10 voice recorder --> M4a to MP4 converted --> DragonDictate transcriber --> Word document.

I've found that the voice recorder on Windows 10 on a PC is just excellent. Great high quality, transcribes great. I dictate fifteen minute chunks, not much more than that.  I finish, give it a meaninful name, e.g. <title> 19 may 2016 number 1, and save it. Four fifteen-minute chunks is usually around 5-6K words.

Windows 10 produces an .m4a file. Dragon can't transcribe that directly, but there's a free converter you can download HERE that works great. Or use this link: http://download.cnet.com/Free-M4a-to-MP3-Converter/3000-2140_4-187723.html

One the fine is converted to an MP4, I have Dragon transcribe it into Dragonpad. I don't go directly into Word because Dragon does not do well with long documents and you run the risk of wiping out a bunch of stuff if Dragon misinterprets something. In Dragonpad, I fix any errors, then cut and paste into my Word document.

I should mention that I'm always working off a structural outline. I may not follow it, but I have always thought the story out ahead of time. That's a very painful and completely necessary part of writing well quickly.  

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