4 Free Apps I Use While Writing

  1. Realtime Board: This app is a writer’s wet dream. Essentially it acts as a digital whiteboard allowing you to create sticky sheets, diaphragms, mind maps and much more. Of all the apps I use while writing (even the ones I’ve paid for) I’d say Realtime Board is among my top three, second only to Scrivener which I consider to be the holy grail of all word processors and one of the best purchases I’ve ever made (expect a post on that in the future). With Realtime Board I find that plotting is easy, the lining tools allows you to join your ideas fast and create complex plots as easily as you would be able to draw them on a whiteboard except without all the clutter. The experience of working with Realtime Board is both tactile and clean. With it it’s easy to translates your ideas into charts, diaphragms and systems, which is why it’s such an imperative tool when it comes to my story plotting process.
  2. Evernote: Easily one of the most well-known, and most trusted, organizational apps for not just writers but creators in general. I find that Evernote is great for storing details and the more complex bits that go into developing stories. I tend to use it a lot when I’m developing characters, and researching. Both the mobile, and computer app, synchronizes to an online cloud making it easy to save, store and update your work regardless of where you are or what device you’re using. I  love how quick and easy it is to add media to documents and I’ve found that both the computer and mobile app are virtually glitch free.
  3. Fast Notepad: This is another notepad note that is incredibly simplistic when pitted against the complexity Evernote, but one I use a lot. Notes are easy to save VIA email, and there is a very basic folder system allowing you to organize your notes by category. In my case I separate them by story, and then another folder called Writing on the Go where I store bits of description or character concepts that come to me when I’m away from home (i.e my Macbook). There are many apps like this, available on both android and apple smartphones, but of all the ones I’ve experimented with Fast Notepad works best for me.
  4. Spotify: As someone who considers musical a critical part of my writing process, Spotify makes it easy to create story-specific playlists without the cost of buying new material every time I change projects. Spotify also has a feature that creates radio stations based on entire playlists, not just songs or albums, which I often use when I feel my selections are becoming stale or repetitive.

Happy writing!


(Image curtesy of Jason Howie)

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