March 17, 2015 - Posted to Writing tips
There is a virtual (no pun intended) explosion of writing apps and writers’ tools available today – from finding quotes, to grammar correction, to pushing through writer’s block, to providing control when there is no self-control, to features that allow messaging, seamless insertion of media, and the ability to file share and publish anywhere.
To put together a list of the most exclusive and necessary writing apps is difficult, because people write for all sorts of reasons – fiction, non-fiction, journalistic pieces, web content, articles, blogs, academic assignments, and such.
So, what I have tried to do is give you a comprehensive list of the best apps for writers of several genres.
While I confess that I have not personally used every feature of every app that follows, I do know enough about them to give you some basic “lowdown.”
Writing apps for iPad users are too numerous to list individually, and many of them will fall into later portions of this listing, because they are synced with over devices as well.
Choose the paper you need
Put as much detailed instructions as you can
The most appropriate writer is assigned
Download the completed paper
But here are some that I love:
System/Device: iPad, Mac
Why it is Awesome: This is a great word processor that supports both Markdown and Python Scripting. One of its best features is a built-in browser – just swipe in from the side!
Cost: Free (can’t beat that!)
Why it’s so Awesome: this great app combines word processing with a great messaging system – the social mechanics are just really great!
System/Device: iPad, and integrated with iOs, iCloud and Mac
Why It’s Awesome: This is a word processing program that is truly full-featured. Media, graphics, charts, and tables are easy to layout and insert, and the file-sharing feature cannot be beaten!
- Day One
Awesomeness: this is a super little app for journaling and it supports Weather, Markdown and Foursquare!
System/Device: iPad but supports Markdown
Awesomeness: This app has a phenomenal extended keyboard for writing ease. It also has a super simple arrange feature that can break down segments of writing, move paragraphs, etc.
- Creative Writer
Compatibility: iPad (although there are other versions for Mac, androids, etc.)
Awesomeness: What a great app for writers who get stuck! Start a sentence and le the app give you suggestions for finishing it. If you want unique ways of saying something, get this app!
Tools for writers need to allow versatility, because so many of us have different operating systems and devices, and we need to be able to maneuver all of them.
There are a couple of apps that should be a part of anyone’s repertoire, if only because they are supported by anything!
Cost: $5 per month or $45 per year
Awesomeness: this beauty keeps all thoughts, media, notes, and writing and organizes them for future use. Because it is synced across all devices, it’s almost a “must have” for writers who may be physically anywhere when they need to make use of it.
- Dragon Dictation
Cost: Pricey but worth it. Apps range from $78 - $1000 (for medical practices)
Compatibility: Any system or device
Awesomeness: You have a personal assistant who will only recognize your voice – a great safety feature! You simply dictate and it transfers to text immediately. Great for people who think faster than they write. What’s more, you can copy/paste to a word document, as well as publish on Facebook and Twitter, etc. Worth the money!!
- Merriam-Webster Dictionary/Thesaurus
Cost: Free or $3.99 for a more comprehensive thesaurus
Compatibility: Any system or device
Awesomeness: Well, no one ever said a dictionary or thesaurus was awesome, but ease of use is great when you need it.
Desktops can still be the favorite writing device for many, because of comfort, keyboard size, etc. Most of the apps on my list are compatible with desktops, but not this one:
Cost: online version is free; download version is $4.99 but with more features
Awesomeness: Paste your text into the app, and it will find all of your errors and awkwardness – makes suggestions for changing structure; finds run-ons, fragments, and agreement issues. If you are too wordy and write without strict concern for grammar, you need this!
Apps for Androids
Awesomeness: If you like just a basic writer and editor, with a built-in dictionary, you’ll like this app. Plus, you can save in doc format and open in any word processing program.
- Writing Prompts
Cost: Free and Paid versions
Awesomeness: This app is for fiction writers and will provide lots of prompts when you just can’t get going!
Writers who are easily distracted (and aren’t we all), will need built in measures to get them under control.
- Self Control
Compatibility: Mac (there are similar apps for all devices – do a bit of research – I’m getting tired!)
Awesomeness: You cannot undo this one! You set a timer and are blocked from web access until time is up. Shutting down won’t change it either – while you are waiting, you might as well write!
Again, these are writing apps that I have personally tried out and like. Do a little looking on your own as well!