Whether or not you’ve fully embraced the digital era, as a writer you have plenty to gain from it. Sometimes it’s just a matter of knowing where to look. Fret not: your hardbound books and loose-leaf paper are not under threat. But there’s simply no use clinging to the past when there’s a glut of free resources available to writers at the click of a button. Need feedback on a poem? There’s an app for that. A clean, distraction-less place to store notes and inspiration? It’s a free download away. You’ve got nothing to lose here–so go ahead, experiment, find the app that fits your needs, and get to writing!
This handy little web app offers streamlined word processing with version control and collaboration. Translation: you can accept or ignore feedback from editors and anyone who reviews your writing after you’ve received it. Their changes are not automatically added to your draft, but you can go through afterward, line by line, deciding what you’d like to keep. A bunch of other great features make Draft worth a free download, not the least of which is its Hemingway Mode. Should you choose to use it, Hemingway Mode puts you in a write first, edit later mindset. You cannot go back, only forward. No deleting. The only editing you can do comes after what you’ve already written. When you’re ready to do a full-out edit, just shift back into normal mode.
As its name implies, OmmWriter is a meant to be a zen-like space where you can get your best writing done. Its creators describe it as “your own private writing room where you can close the door behind you to focus on your writing in peace.” This web app works on iPad, Mac and PC, a welcome alternative to traditional, cluttered word processing devices. With backgrounds and audio tracks for whatever mood you’re in (or seeking to create), you can fine tune your ambiance and let the words flow.
This is the ultimate note-taking app, available for android, iPhone or iPad, syncing your updates across all devices (Mac and PC, too!). When you’re in the thick of a giant research project for a book or article in-the-making, Evernote should be your go-to application. Beyond allowing you to jot down anything that comes to mind–whenever and wherever–it lets you organize those thoughts alongside saved web articles, PDFs, photos, and handwritten notes. To-do lists and tags allow you to easily sort through your material and prioritize, fast. This app is a total game-changer for all writers.