michael chabon headshotWho are you and what do you write?

My name is Michael Chabon and mostly I write fiction. Five novels, a couple of novellas, short stories, essays. I have two screenwriting credits, for Spider-Man 2 and for John Carter, and a lot of unproduced or uncredited work.

My latest novel, TELEGRAPH AVENUE, is just out from HarperCollins.

Where and when do you write?

I mostly work in a studio behind my house in Berkeley, California, at night, from 10 PM to 3 (or 4) AM.

My wife and I have four children, which means that frequently I feel compelled to flee for a few days, a week, occasionally as long as two weeks, to try to bear down and get deeply immersed. Immersion in a project, in a house with four children, is all but unattainable.

What software do you use?

workspaceStarted out in 1983, using WordStar on an Osborne 1. Many gray years of Word. Tried what feels like dozens before settling down in recent years with Scrivener and Final Draft, making occasional resort to Pages.

But now I am in love with iA Writer. Its beauty and simplicity, its tight cloud integration, and its device agnosticism have me rapt. I used Writer to write an entire essay about Finnegans Wake on my iPad (and even, sitting at the DMV and the orthodontist, my iPhone).

Lately I have been moving, for screenwriting work, to Writer/Fountain/Highland.

What hardware do you use?

MacBook Pro, iMac, iPad, iPhone.

What (if anything) would you change?

I wish Scrivener had better cloud integration, and was spread beautifully across platforms the way Writer is. Writer is a sharp tool, but Scrivener is still, by far, the best app for organizing all the pieces of a big project like a novel.