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  • Lou Johnson

So Writing Tools are a thing...

Writing has been a hobby, and career, for many people throughout the years, oftentimes being the result of many hours of work. It is no wonder that many people want to make the job easier with any software, hardware, or magic they can get their hands on. The search for such aids can be a daunting task...so I figured, why don't I do some of the work for you guys?


What defines a writer's tool?

A writer's tool is a tool that aids and abets in the process of writing a book. These tools help with one part of the project or another; oftentimes with many of these steps. These tools can range from free software to hardware and traditional tools.

A Brief History...

Writing first started in 3400 BC with the Mesopotamians who wrote cuniform on clay tablets with blunt reeds used as a stylus. This paved the way for civilization, hieroglyphs coming only 400 years later in three thousand. With language came the invention of paper in 100 BC and with paper came ink but the most important thing cuniform brought us was scribes; the people meant to write.

The Programs

I will be discussing multiple programs in this post that will aid you in planning, drafting, or otherwise writing a novel. I will be specifically noting these programs:

  • Scrivener

  • Bibisco

  • Cherrytree

  • Campfire

  • Kanka.io

  • World Anvil

  • Reedsy

  • Plotfactory.com

  • Writer Tools - Novel Planner, tracker, & editor

  • Manuskript


Scrivener

Scrivener is a lovely app for those who have an extra 45 dollars USD. Made by literature and latte this computer software and ios app(sorry Android users!) Allows writers to create a very well planned outlined just for their needs. After you outline you can either write in scrivener or, as I do, use a word processor to do the writing. While the program is 45 dollars for a lifetime license; you can test the program out with its 30-day free trial.

Bibisco

Bibisco is a freeware app(with a few extras for a onetime purchase of 10 dollars) for novel writers that is geared towards characters and plots. This app makes everything easy from the characters to the places and it even has it's own templates that you could work through with ease.

Cherrytree Notes

Cherrytree Notes is a note-taking app that works similar to scrivener in the sense that it has binders and nodes. It is very good for note taking. While not perfect it certainly has it's uses. I recommend cherrytree notes for the avid note taker.

Campfire

Campfire is an app that is made for world-building notes. The app is personally one of my favorites. however with a cost of 49.99 to 74.98 USD the app is not for everyone. This app is jam-packed templates for the world-builder and conlinguist in you.

Kanka.io

Kanka.io is a website that, similarly to campfire, is made for world-building. This app has ordered slots for each element. That being said the interface is hard to navigate and a bit slow if your computer has minimal hardware.

World Anvil

World Anvil is a worldbuilding website designed for dnd, and a great one if you need to make ordered notes and share them! That being said there is one minor issue with this site: It has a lot of averts and it glitches from time to time. Even then: It's free so you can't really complain!

Reedsy Editor

Reedsy Editor is a free, online, book formatting tool that is great for the aspiring novelist. With a clean, easy to use interface and a marketplace of people to help. This could be editors, marketers, and more! Reedsy makes it much easier to self publish and get things done.

Plotfactory.com

Plotfactory.com is an online tool for those who can't download anything but want a simple; easy to use interface. With categories for what you need and a helpful discord server I have no doubt you'll find what you need here.


Writer Tools - Novel Planner, tracker, & editor

Writer's tool is a useful android app that allows you to draft an entire novel on your phone in one place. With a place for all of your notes, the ability to sync to a cloud, and the ability to open a computer editor when needed this app is great for anyone who only has a phone.


Manuskript

Manuscript is a useful tool; similar to scrivener that is great for mapping, planning, and writing a book. Though the app is a little harder to navigate than Scrivener it is completely free! This app is; in my opinion, a must have.


I can only recommend these tools and while I have tried, and loved, all of them I can't tell you what tools you like. Go through and try them all; expand your own knowledge and if you like; wait for the mobile specific list.

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