Uncategorized, Writers Co-op


If you are writing with a program other than Microsoft Word, please tell us what you think of it in the Comments Section. Your experience may help others.

For those considering using a program made specifically for writers, here’s an idea of what’s out there.

Scrivener is considered by many to be the premier book writing software. It is made by writers for writers. Scrivener’s “binder” view allows you to break up your book into chapters and sections and easily reorganize it. Project targets let you create word count goals and then track your progress daily. Its composition mode can help you stay focused by removing all the clutter. Plus, it allows you to format for publishing (e.g. on Amazon or Barnes & Noble).

Writemonkey is a Windows zenware* writing application with an extremely stripped down user interface, leaving you alone with your thoughts and your words. It is light, fast and free. With an array of innovative tools under the hood and full Markdown* support, it helps you write better.

Mac OS:
Storyist is a creative writing application for Mac OS X and iPad. Tailored for novelists and screenwriters, it provides a word processor, a cork board with support for index cards and photos, an outliner, and a project manager.

For other suggestions, see this comparison with pricing & website links:
The Best Creative Writing Software of 2018

Personally, I start a new story on the old Microsoft Notepad because, in the early formative stage, I don’t want to be distracted by spellcheck, grammar check or any other checks on my thoughts.  I then use Word because it’s universal and I’m used to it. meh.

What do you use?


16 thoughts on “WRITING APPS

  1. I like Scrivener for ‘writing’ (combination of importing dictated scenes from a digital voice recorder and revising on the keyboard) because there’s an app that allows me to sync my projects across devices through Dropbox. I can continue to work on my projects using my tablet during road trips, etc. I also like having a one-stop shop: my research, timeline, marketing copy, character photos, covers, and so on are in the project binder.

    However, I do not use Scrivener for formatting; I use Vellum (https://vellum.pub). Although Scrivener will do the job, I find Vellum is much faster and more professional looking because of how their system works.

    For instance, you can add links for all the retailers and Vellum will automatically generate a different version of an eBook for each retailer, which is less time consuming than doing it manually. Additionally, exporting print books is a snap, and you can tag the different segments as eBook- or print-only so that when you generate the different versions, you can have different front and back matter in each version. Their style menu is similarly sophisticated and efficient. I formatted a novella for my beta readers in about thirty minutes.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. mimispeike says:

    That sounds like something I will want to explore. I use Word, and have dozens of files in folders within folders within folders. I have trouble sometimes laying hands on what I’m looking for.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. atthysgage says:

    I still use Word for my final drafts, but mostly I work in Google Docs these days, mostly because it allows me to access my documents anywhere I can wifi. It’s pretty functional. To be honest, I haven’t really examined all the tools that are available. It might be pretty basic, but then so am I.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. mimispeike says:

    The formatting help will be useful to me eventually. I’m still writing. And researching.

    Having found next to no useful information about the physical set-up of Hamelin in the sixteenth century, I have just ordered a memoir of a woman who lived there about fifty years after my time. I expect that quite a lot will be relevant to my decade. A lot of work for only a few lines of description, but I am trying to be as accurate as I can be.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Perry Palin says:

    I applaud Mimi for her research of true facts. I am turned off immediately by a story with facts that I know are wrong. The research, sorting, and filing of true facts can be assisted, I think, by one of these apps.

    I have not used any writing softwares. In my short fiction I can keep my facts and my story straight with Word. There is no need to generate different versions for different retailers. If the story sells, it’s to one journal or magazine.

    My novel, unpublished, is a challenge. I’m working in Word only, and working slowly, which suits me. I’ve tried outlining, generating note cards, filing scene ideas. None of that has worked for me. I write one chapter at a time, making it up as I go, trying to make the story real.

    I am pecking away at this like it is a hobby. If I wanted to sell any real number of words, my slow production would be a problem. Then an app might help, if it doesn’t get in the way of the message.

    Liked by 3 people

    • GD Deckard says:

      I did that, Perry, worked off-&-on for six years on a novel. One day, I don’t know why, it became a priority in life and I finished it in four years. I suspect that taking years to write a novel is normal if you’ve never done one and if you’re serious about quality. I remember working as an operating room tech while in college. One patient was a young child with cauliflower ears. Took the surgeon an hour & a half to repair one ear. Then, he told me, “The second ear will only take half as long, now that I’ve done one.”

      Liked by 4 people

  6. There is much to be said for the general approach in the “Personally, …” paragraph, not necessarily with the same software.  (I use a plain text editor that is much better than Notepad; I cannot stand Word.)  Starting with a good plain text editor really does postpone distractions.  I just put in comments about *what* I want regarding images or layout, w/o fretting about *how* to get it later, after switching to fancy software.  I also find that proofreading is more effective when I see the same stuff in more than one font and format.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. atthysgage says:

    My first novel, I used a spiral-bound notebook and a succession of ballpoint pens. I didn’t even download a word-processing program until my rough draft was finished. I wanted to see if I could do it. I still do a lot of drafting by hand, and usually block out a rough scene-by-scene kind of outline in a notebook before I start drafting. That first novel took me seven months to get a rough draft. Whisper Blue only took about six weeks (I imposed a discipline of 6 pages a day upon myself, just because). Others? Well, the novel I’m currently trying to finish I started three years ago. There’s no pattern, except I seem to be getting slower all the time.

    Liked by 2 people

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