Github as a Writer (GaaW)


What kind of writer are you? Are you a Pantser, a Plotter, or somewhere in between? Are you writing fiction or non-fiction? Are you writing a short-story, novella, novel or series? Regardless of your tactical approach to writing, your genre or the complexity of the product, your creative effort is a project. There are as many ways to manage a writing project as there are writers. Given that I am in the IT profession and a project manager, my chosen writing platform involves Github.

What is Github? GitHub is a Web-based Git version control repository hosting service. It is mostly used for computer code, but works with any text or binary set of files. It offers all of the distributed version control and source code management (SCM) functionality of Git as well as adding its own features. It provides access control and several collaboration features such as bug tracking, feature requests, task management, and wikis for every project.

Why Github? I started using Github early in my writing career. I was a software developer for a few years before I became a project manager. I’m accustomed to keeping software in version control, at the very least so that I could recover if I needed to. While not absolute proof, keeping managing your project and its versions may support copyright defense1. However, my primary motivation for keeping my writing in Github is to manage the development of my writing, track progress, and keep myself organized.

The rest of this page summarizes how I use Github for managing writing projects. Github’s features are broken down into a couple contexts. The core feature is its role as a Git repository, which allows me to track my writing.

Task & Issue Management

The Internet is filled with different ways to manage tasks. Github’s task management focuses on the given repository. Tasks can be grouped by labels and milestones.

Writing Process

I’ve tinkered with a lot of different ways to manage my book production over the years. This is my effort to capture the process so I can stop screwing around. I have documented is my effort to organize my Writing Process.


  1. As I am not a lawyer, this is my unprofessional opinion. Before relying on what I say about copyright, consult with an Intellectual Property attorney. 

© 2017 Ben Wilson. All Rights Reserved