Writing Software: What Is Best For You? Finding the perfect software to making your writing life easier this year is important. Most of us writers use Microsoft Office not knowing the plethora of software out there available. So below are different types of writing software for both platforms (Mac/PC) that can be used to enrich, inspire, and get you to write more this year. Check out the websites as well as many of the companies have free trials of their product. Have one that’s not listed? Share it with us!
Price range: $150+
Microsoft Office has been around forever it seems. A lot of writers find the simplicity of the program to write their stories while offering ways to edit and track changes. Office has improved in many ways over the years and continues to have added features. I like office because I can create a newsletter and do all my writing for school and for personal use. Most writers feel this is all they need to keep them organized and writing. This may be true, but I love to see other options.
iWork is the equivalent of the Microsoft Office.
This is made by Apple for Apple computers.
Price range: $79 (Single User)- 99 (Family Pack) Website: www.Apple.com
I like using iWork being a Mac user myself. There are many features that you won’t find in MS Office. iWork has a layout mode for page lay out and word processing all in one. iWork is not for customers who do a lot of spreadsheets and macros in Excel.
Creating the perfect brochure, flyer, report, or resume is faster and easier than ever. Choose from 40 new Apple-designed templates (over 180 total). Focus on your writing with new full-screen view. Organize your ideas with dynamic outlines. Customize your documents using mail merge with Numbers. Insert equations with MathType 6 (sold separately). Create bibliographies with EndNote X2 (sold separately). Open, save, and email Microsoft Word files from within Pages. Learn more about Pages ’09 Numbers ’09 Create spreadsheets, organize data, and write formulas with simple yet powerful tools. Easily create formulas, using visual placeholders with plain language text. Perform calculations using over 250 functions. Organize your data instantly using Table Categories. Check your calculations at a glance with Formula List view. Create two-axis charts and combine line, column, and area series in a single mixed chart. Choose from twelve new Apple-designed templates (30 total). Open, save, and email Microsoft Excel files from within Numbers. Learn more about Numbers ’09 Keynote ’09 Now creating a show-stopping presentation is surprisingly simple. Easily create sophisticated animations with Magic Move. Add dramatic object and text transitions using new visual effects. Visualize your data with new styles and animations for 3D charts. Dramatically reduce file size without compromising quality. Create dynamic flowcharts and diagrams using connection lines. Choose from eight new Apple-designed themes (44 total). Open, save, and email Microsoft Power point files from within Keynote.
Platform: Mac OS X
Writing a book, short story or research paper is about more than hammering away at the keys until it’s done. Research, scrawling fragmentary ideas that don’t seem to fit anywhere yet, collecting faded photos from old newspapers, shuffling index cards to find that elusive structure – most writing software is only fired up after much of the hard work is already done. Enter Scrivener: writing software that stays with you from that first, unformed idea all the way through to the first – or even final – draft. Outline and structure your ideas. Take notes. Storyboard your masterpiece using a powerful virtual corkboard. View research while you write. Track themes using keywords. Dynamically combine multiple scenes into a single text just to see how they fit. Scrivener has already been enthusiastically adopted by best-selling novelists, academics, lawyers, script writers and journalists – whatever you write, grow your ideas in style.
Platform: Mac OSX
• Track, tag and filter characters, scenes, locations, and research with StoryMill’s unique dynamic outline.
• Visually and interactively display your story across time with StoryMill’s timeline view.
• Annotate any text in your project.
• Revise your work with innovative tools like a word frequency tracker and cliche finder.
• Set and achieve your daily writing goals with the progress meter.
• A built-in support for tracking submissions to editors and agents.
• Manage the creative writing process with Smart Views.
• Write, distraction-free, in Full Screen Mode.
• View your novel in multiple views.
• Back up any and all activity in StoryMill
• Native Cocoa, Universal, and Leopard compatible.
Price: $54.99 (download) or Cd $59.99
Take a look at what you can do with NewNovelist:
Start with character development, or work on a plot turn
Describe an event first
Work backward by writing the ending FIRST!
Write Your Novel YOUR WAY!
Write it Now
Platform: PC & Mac OSX
Keep your writing and background material together.
Keep Track of Who Does What and When
Re-Organize Your Story as You Like
Don’t Worry About Formatting
While you’re writing, WriteItNow lets you concentrate on what you’re writing. When you’ve finished writing it takes just a few key-presses to create a neatly formatted manuscript.
Keep a Record of Submissions
Use the Submissions Tab to remember exactly who you’ve sent each story to, when they replied and (hopefully) when you were paid.
Keep in Control
The main writing tools are described here but WriteItNow has lots of other features which help.
E.g. when you change the story date each character’s age is automatically updated.
When you start WriteItNow it remembers the last story you were working on and loads it.
WriteItNow runs on PCs and Mac. You can buy one unlock code and use it on your PC and your Mac. The CD includes both PC and Mac versions.
Platform: PC & Mac OSX
With the Visual Thesaurus, you can:
- Find the right word. The Visual Thesaurus has over 145,000 English words and 115,000 meanings. Find the word you need and discover related meanings.
- Develop a better vocabulary. See how words are used in different parts of speech.
- Use words precisely. The intuitive interface helps you find words through their semantic relationship with other words and meanings.
- Master word usage. Roll over a meaning to see its definition and example sentences that express that meaning.
- Improve your grammar. Meanings are color-coded to indicate parts of speech.
- Explore 39,000 proper nouns. Historical figures, phrases and trademarks are included. Look up Mozart, Manda or simply, “M.”
- Check your spelling. The Visual Thesaurus suggests a word if you spell it wrong.
- Hear words pronounced correctly. The Visual Thesaurus offers both American and British pronunciations (Internet connection necessary)
- Personalize your experience. Use the Settings Panel to control font size, filter content, display up to 17 semantic relationships and more.
- Browse language in 2D or 3D. Rotate word maps in three dimensions to reveal complex relationships.
- Connect to the Internet. Right-click on any word to launch an Internet search for images or information.