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List of writing software

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Revision as of 12:01, 22 October 2011 by Gabriel (talk | contribs)
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There are many ways to write your novel. If you're looking for a new program to write in, you might find yourself overwhelmed by all the choices.

Wrimos discuss their writing programs of choice in the NaNo Technology forum.

Distraction-free editors

  • Dark Room (Windows, free): Dark Room is a full-screen writing environment for Windows. It's a clone of WriteRoom for Mac.
  • FocusWriter (Windows/Mac/Linux, free): FocusWriter is a full-screen eidtor designed to immerse you in your writing. It automatically reopens the last file you had open to reinforce this notion. Other features include live statistics, daily goals, and customizable themes.
  • OmmWriter (Windows/Mac, free, $4.11 for full version): OmmWriter is a full-screen editor with keyboard sounds and background music.
  • Q10 (Windows, Free): A full-screen editor that makes typewriter noises. Features customizable look and page count formula, a timer for Word wars, and a target count. Q10 is portable.
  • WriteMonkey (Windows, free): A full-screen editor described as zenware. Includes advanced statistics and customizing features, typing sounds and a timer. WriteMonkey is portable.
  • WriteRoom (Mac, free, $24.99 for full version): WriteRoom is a full-screen editor for Mac that specializes in getting the words down. It features full syncing between computers and has spawned several clones.

Text editors

  • Notepad (Windows, free): Some wrimos prefer to use the default text editor that comes with Windows for its lack of frills and universal compatibility. There are variations of Notepad (such as Notepad++) which preserve the simplicity of Notepad while adding a few extra functions (such as word count).

Word processors

  • Openoffice.org (Windows/Mac/Linux, free): Open Office is an open-source office suite similar to Microsoft Office available as a free download. It is preferred by some for its equivalent or superior performance to Microsoft Office, but does have a known function with smart (curly) quotes being counted as words, resulting in inflated wordcounts.
  • Microsoft Office


Online programs

  • Write or Die (free, downloadable version available for $10): Write or Die, a program developed by Nano enthusiast Dr Wicked, "is a web application that encourages writing by punishing the tendency to avoid writing." Once the timer is started, the web application will inflict various 'punishments' (popup window, annoying noises, or erasing words) if typing is not detected for a customizable grace period. The downloadable version includes extra features, such as a full-screen mode and the ability to word war online with a friend.
  • Google Docs (free): Google Docs is often used by wrimos who access their novels from multiple locations or want to have a secure backup. It has most of the functions of a word processor and can also be set to be private or public.