Writing tools

This post is a collection point for all kinds of writing-related tools, websites, and resources — anything I find interesting, useful, or crappy. I’ll add to it over time.

Some basics

  • Scrivener
  • A typewriter
  • Notebooks
  • Mechanical pencils
  • Sticky notes
  • A contractor’s clipboard (storage clipboard)
  • iPad

Tools & software

  • Storyboarder – an easy to use digital storyboarding tool. Draw stick figures like I did or import images, and export in a number of ways. I actually sort of envisioned a tool like Storyboarder many years ago, but didn’t have the programming chops to pull it off. I’m glad someone finally did. I tend to visualize my story as if I were watching a movie so this tool might help me bridge the gap between my imagination and what makes it onto the page.

Online editors

  • Hemingway editor – highlights lengthy, complex sentences and common errors to help you tighten up your writing. ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
  • Grammarly – a plugin for Chrome that scans and helps you improve your words nearly anywhere you write on the web. Haven’t tried it yet
  • IA Writer – A simple, stripped-down text editor. Used to use it on the iPad but haven’t for a long time. No rating yet
  • The Most Dangerous Writing App
  • Write or Die – highly configurable writing motivator (spiders!)
  • Flowstate – deletes your words if you stop typing for more than 5 seconds. OS X and iOS

Newsletters & mailing lists

  • Jane Friedman’s Electric Speed newsletter – lots of great tools from her


Things I’m not impressed by

  • Refly – infuse your writing with the breathy crap robots write that generates SEO scores that executives like. “The simplistic design and well-structured features will help writers achieve more pace and improve quality marginally.” Although I didn’t submit any personal information to the site, they spammed me after my visit.
  • Rough Draft – like a million other online editors, plus pestering by pop-up bots at the website

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