Being a professional writer requires two key things to help ensure success: commitment and support. The former comes from the writer, and the latter comes from the tools he (or she) uses to get the job done. Below is a list of 11 great and lesser-known writing tools or apps, many of which are free and open-source, that can help improve the quality of your writing and make you a more productive and successful writer.
1. Google Docs
The gold standard of online collaborative writing and productivity software, Google Docs not only allows for remote, secure storage of all your trusted manuscripts, but it also provides for collaboration between writers and editors, copywriters and clients, etc. Download documents in a variety of formats for quick sharing.
One of the worst feelings in the world for a writer is not having the opportunity to capture an idea before it becomes forgotten. Evernote is one of the best solutions to this problem because it allows users to not only jot down notes but also search for support material and store everything together in their folders. How’s that for keeping thoughts organized?
Freedom offers a viable solution to digital distractions by blocking apps known to create distractions. It can silence notifications and other device functions in a fraction of the time it would take to turn off everything yourself manually. Best of all, you can designate specific times of day to silence apps and set start and end-timers so you can form better habits and routines.
While not specifically an app, EssayPro is still a valuable online resource that connects writers with information and support for every stage of the development process. They offer a free blog that is loaded with information and tips for writers who want to improve and perfect their craft.
They are the academic writer website for students, but also a full-service academic writing and copywriting agency should you be looking to offset some writing time to allocate to other tasks. EssayPro is considered one of the best writing tools for the writer.
Looking for a clean, simple, easy-to-use writing tool that works on all major platforms? If so, Paragraph might just become your new favorite. Its formatting tools are also easy to use and can either automate or minimize the overhead involved in performing specific tasks like annotations and hyperlinks.
It is much easier to convey thoughts and ideas in writing when you have an extensive vocabulary. If you have trouble merely calling up synonyms or more colorful adjectives in your writing, WordsU can help. This is an excellent writing tool for learning new words or just finding the right ones at the right times.
It’s just like the name sounds. Collabora is another writing suite like Google Docs that makes collaborating on writing projects easy and efficient. Insert and reply to comments, leave editing notes, and export files into all popular formats. Best of all, it’s open source, making it possible to customize to the needs of a single freelancer or successful copywriting agency.
A real open source and adaptable platform designed for creating and running online publications, this app is excellent for writers looking to start an online magazine or give a fresh new feel to their blogs. Many big companies, including several global big-box e-commerce sites, rely on Ghost to add credibility to their written content.
This app touts itself as an effective cure for writer’s block, and it is easy to see why. BlankPage has a simple UI that leaves the writer free of distractions so he or she can write and make more productive use of writing time. The app allows the writer to set daily word count goals and track the progress of the current project through regular reports.
Ready to publish your book? Want it to look as good as possible? If so, downloading Vellum is mandatory. This app is the premier resource for e-book self-publishers looking to make a good impression and attract more readers. It is one of the simplest e-book formats on the market. It also offers the option of creating hard-copy paperbacks for an additional fee.
11. Apache OpenOffice
Free, open source, and powerful, Apache remains one of the most trusted free suites of productivity and writing software on the market. It is compatible with all Microsoft formats and can even import and convert documents, slideshows, spreadsheets, and more from a variety of other applications and a laundry list of file formats.
We hope you will take the time to explore some of the great resources we’ve compiled. All of them can help make you a better writer and make what you write stand out.