Documentation

ultra_outliner v0.9.5b

General Concept

The ultra_outliner software allows you to make a set of virtual cards (instead of paper cards) and then combine them in different ways. Any story is a complex structure, and different view can help to solve different problem.

Project Structure

Project contains following main elements: entities, presentations, templates and connections.

Entities and relations

Entity is a virtual card with a certain meaning. A set of fields is determined due to template.

Template is a description of fields and their order. Differs for each type of entity. Field types and customization technology provided in template configuration.

Connection is a links chain between entity instances.

Presentation - a document where there is a specific set of entity instances and connections between them. There are following presentations supported: Free Plot, Outline and Screenplay.

Project Structure

Entity Types

Event (or Index Card)

The key entity for describing the action. In the screenwriting stage it usually is converted into a scene.

Event

Character

Character

It can also have connected traits.

Plot

The head which can start a plot line connection.

Plot

Scene

A basic screnplay element. More deeper, it consists of a typed text blocks (paragraphs).

Scene

Location

A place, where action is occured for example.

Location

Treasure

Special object that has key importance for the story. Used to verify that it is present in all relevant events.

Treasure

In the particular case can represent MacGuffin.

Connection Types

Each connection has its own semantics, you can not connect a card with any other.

Plot Connection

The sequence of events within the plot. It begins with the plot head, and connects consequently events. It can not contains any event twice.

Plot Connection

For more information about how to work with plot lines is described in the working with Free Plot.

Trait Reveal

Associates character trait with the opponent character, who helps him to reveal through some events this trait. It starts with a trait, chains several events and ends at character-opponent.

Trait Reveal

For more information about how to work with the trait reveal is described in the working with Free Plot.

Locates In

Associates the event with the locations where it occurs.

Locates In Connection

Locations Hierarchy

A hierarchy of locations can be built based on the relationship "being a parent". It starts from a child location and ends on the parent.

Parental location

Used In

Connects treasure with the event, where it is used. It starts from the treasure and ends at the event card.

Used In

Different Presentations

ultra_outliner gives you three different ways to look at your story:

General Concept Scheme

First of all, you have a pile of cards in the center. They are not ordered, they can be your vision of scenes, of beats or sequences. They can be edited in Cards editor.

Free Plot

Graphics presentation where you can create instances of all entities and create connections between them. How to work with this presentation is described in Working with Free Plot.

Free Plot

Outline

It allows to form final outline linear in screenplay time. This outline will form the linear sequence of cards. How to work with outline is described in details here.

Outline

Screenplay

Has both text and graphics presentations, and currently is in the experimental stage. It allows you how to enter information in text form, and combine scenes in graphics mode.

Global Editors

Project editors allow to perform system operations and usually can help to work with presentations.

Project Explorer

Allows to perform basic project operations: create new documents, cards, etc. Displays all the existing entities in the project in form of a tree, where you drag the entity to the desired presentation.

Project Explorer

Cards Table

This is cards container, which stores all the cards. Cards are shared across all the editors. If you create card in any of the editor - you can always find it here.

More information is available in Cards Editor tutorial.