***I was neither endorsed nor sponsored by this brand to make this review. I purchased the item with my own money and am reviewing it of my own volition.***
Today we’re covering some software!
Before we begin, I am aware of Campfire Blaze, but I haven’t tried it yet. A review for that may come eventually.
You may or may not have heard of it, but Campfire Pro is a very detailed desktop plotting tool I’ve come to very much appreciate. It helps you organize and keep track of lots of different elements of your story. I personally use it to keep track of character traits for consistency, but that barely scratches the surface of what this program is capable of!
Campfire Pro has a paid “World Building” pack that allows you to add incredibly detailed aspects of your story such as magic systems, languages, races etc. Since I haven’t had much experience in that department, I’ll be saving that particular review for another time. Today we’re going to talk about Campfire Pro’s base program.
At first glance, Campfire may look a bit sparse, but that’s because it’s up to YOU to populate the sections. The base program allows you to create character bios, locations of note, and plot out major and minor events.
I always start by setting up the characters and locations. It makes the plotting part so much easier. In creating the characters, you cna establish relationship links which is helpful if you have relationships you’d like to keep track of. You can also add character descriptions for both physical appearance and personality. If you have reference pics, you can add those, too! Same for locations if you have references.
Once you have all that set up, you can start efficiently plotting in a visual way!
Moving over to events, you can start adding new plot points to the open space available. You can move these points around freely and connect them to other points via a tether system that you can color code. When setting up an event, you can identify key characters, location, and the importance of the scene. Is it a minor or major one? You can also specify if the scene occurs on the pages or off. As in, is it something that is actively happening or is it something that happened off screen? This particular identifier is incredibly helpful for me. Keeping track of off-screen events can be difficult since they aren’t active parts of the plot. Campfire makes it easy write them up and have them all in one place.
You can do far more with this program, and I know I underutilize it, but for what I DO use it for, I appreciate it’s efficiency and ease of access.
Going in blind, I did have to do some adjusting to get used to the minimalist setting Campfire Pro opens with. The blank mats for plotting were intimidating at first but rather than being rigid and restricting forms to fill out, they’re completely malleable. You can move events around freely, rework them entirely, or completely remove them. It’s very much like a real-life plotting spread. You give it all the info and it makes it available to you in a very user-friendly way.
Campfire Pro is available on their site or on Steam for $49.99. The “World Building” pack can’t be purchased alone and comes in a pack with the base program for $74.98 on their site.
The fun thing about the Steam version is that the actually have achievements. Yes. A writing program has achievements. So if that’s something you’re into I do recommend going the Steam route. The program is exactly the same regardless of where you get it.
Campfire Pro also allows you to save files locally or up in the almighty cloud for access anywhere. When you save a copy on your computer, you can back it up and just have Campfire Pro locate it if you ever have to change device.
I know this isn’t the most comprehensive Campfire review/explanation, but I hope it gave you a good idea of what type of resource it is and why I enjoy using it. If you want more info, you can check out their site!
All images (except the blank project) sourced from Campfire Pro’s site