Good writing depends on several factors. Natural talent, acquired skills, and mastery of the basics are all important. Good tools are also important. There are a variety of writing apps available to help with writing chores, impacting everything from organization to grammar. The key is to find the ones that meet your needs in a way that fits your writing style.
Below are brief reviews on 12 writing apps we believe every author can use, to help you in your search. Try them all, and choose the ones that help you the most.
Founded in 2008 and based in Vienna, Austria, MindNode is an easy-to-use mind mapping application for Mac, iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. When working on the nitty-gritty details of a broad concept, you just don’t want to see the bigger picture. Instead, you want to concentrate on the one area you’re currently working on and hide others.
Focus Mode, in the newly released MindNode 6, allows you to do precisely that. It puts a spotlight on a particular part of the mind map and fades out all the rest. With no more distractions, you can focus on letting your ideas grow.
Scrivener is the go-to app for writers of all kinds, used every day by best-selling novelists, screenwriters, non-fiction writers, students, academics, lawyers, journalists, translators and more. Scrivener won’t tell you how to write—it simply provides everything you need to start writing and keep writing.
From writing to organization, to research to publishing, Scrivener provides all the tools you need right in one place. Available for Windows, MacOS and iOS users.
WordBook Dictionary is an English dictionary and thesaurus for Apple users, that also provides in-depth explanations for how words are used. A cheap, but handy tool for writers on the go.
Rev is a writing app that handles voice recording, transcription services, video captioning, foreign subtitles for video, and even translation services, all for simple pricing plans that are completely affordable. Available for PC and iOS.
The IA Writer claims to be The Writing App for focusing on just you writing and nothing else. Focus on one sentence, one paragraph, or other views at a time, including formatting and syntax mode to aid in rewriting. Use day or night mode to keep from straining your eyesight whenever you choose to write. Exports to WordPress and Medium.
Ulysses calls itself The Ultimate Writing App for Mac, iPad and iPhone. A pleasant, focused writing experience combined with effective document management, fast syncing, and flexible export make Ulysses the first choice for writers of all kinds. It provides a clean and intuitive workspace that helps writers stay focused and organized, and you can even export directly to HTML, or publish to WordPress and Medium.
Download the Day One writers app for free on iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch. It is free to use, but the paid premium version unlocks all the nice journaling bells and whistles that will keep you journaling every day, securely storing your notes, syncing across all your devices, and getting creative. Add photos, drawings, or audio recordings to bring your journal entries to life.
Take notes anywhere. Find information faster. Share ideas with anyone. Meeting notes, web pages, projects, to-do lists—with Evernote as your note-taking writing app, nothing falls through the cracks. Whenever an idea presents itself, writers want to record it for later. Record your ideas at any time with text, images, and voice, and retrieve them easily with Evernote. Set reminders or collaborate with your team by sharing your ideas.
Blurt is another writing app that provides a tool to help you write better by keeping you focused on the text at hand, yet keeping your other tools nearby. Adjust your screen to make writing easy on your eyes, write and save your progress to pick up where you left off on any device, and even publish directly to your favorite platforms, like Medium.
Publisher Rocket will help get your book in front of more Amazon shoppers to sell more of your books. It provides real data on keywords and categories that allow you to strategically align your book’s meta data and advertising with the most successful keywords and categories. Get your book found and sold more often with Publisher Rocket. Currently (August 2019) it is available for a lifetime use fee of $97 with a 30-day money back guarantee, but will soon be converting to a monthly use fee.
This writing app doesn’t have direct impact on your writing, but allows you to test various aspects and ideas quickly from anonymous and unbiased audiences. Respondents to your survey tell you what they like and why. PickFu also provides demographic data so you know who responded, and you can target your inquiry to specific audiences to test different demographics yourself. Spend $50 and get 50 instant poll responses for your next idea.
Timer Tab is a simple browser-based timer you can keep in a tab while you work or write in another. Time your writing, a cooking project, or any project with a stopwatch, countdown, or alarm clock mode free timer.
Give these writing apps a try and see which ones you see will help improve your writing skills, organization, or more. Which one is your favorite? Do you have other writing apps that you use to get the work done better and faster? We’d love for you to share your thoughts and opinions with our readers in the comments below.