Bloggers and aspiring authors struggle with focus. Distractions abound. And it’s easy to feel unispired or unmotivated. Today, freelance writer and ghostwriter Sanjay Bojan (@sanjaybojan) offers his best picks for apps that help writers stay focused, inspired, and productive.
When was the last time you sat down to work on your book manuscript—blogged or otherwise—and completed your writing goal for the day without complaining about distractions or cursing yourself for not being able to write more productively? I would guess that such days are rare in a writer’s life.
I understand. I am a writer, too. After years of writing, I still find it hard to write a post or story without distraction and tap into my creativity at will. And that cruel thing called focus… It’s hard to maintain the same level of concentration day in and day out let alone from hour to hour.
Apps to Help Writers and Bloggers
But what if writers, like us, can get a little help from technology—help that makes it possible to stay focused and write creatively? Interestingly, there are quite a lot of apps and tools to help us become productive and creative writers. Regardless of whether you are a book or a blog writer (or both), these apps can do wonders for your writing output and career.
Here are my picks for the top five apps for writers.
The name says it all. This free app helps you keep your mind focused all the time and is specially designed to eradicate distractions so that a writer can focus on writing.
How does it do that? FocusWriter lets you hide other apps and software running in the background, change the fonts and colors of your text to make them visually appealing, and helps you keep track of your progress. The type-writing sound effects offered by the app brings back memories of earlier writing days.
However, the app is not without its share of share of flaws. For example, if you have the habit of going back and editing your story frequently, this app may not be for you. On the other hand, if you are looking for something with an extremely modest footprint that prevents you from checking your Facebook update every five minutes, look no further.
You can download this app for your Windows, Linux as well as macOS devices.
Here’s an app for writers struggling with content ideation challenges. If writing a location-based or network-based story is your target for the day, Nuzzel is the app for you. It delivers relevant events and news based on what people in your social network find interesting, which can help you engage them in your updates.
Available for both Apple and Android users, the app accumulates personalized updates within the scope of your interest and your network news. For content marketers and book writers looking for stories of common interest to followers or looking for social-media update inspiration from industry experts, Nuzzel is a handyuseful app.
For busy newsletter writers, looking to share ideas and expand their audiences, Nuzzel can help them do it with a personal touch. It’s an excellent source for news-related blog posts as well.
Here’s another app that helps authors with focus issues. WriteMonkey is a text editor language app that helps you annotate, link, format, and classify text while you write. The free software offers an incredibly easy and powerful user interface, which itself allows writers to focus.
The app features a fantastic outliner, file organizer, and automatic syntax highlighter. It may take some time to master this app and learn all its features, but once you are past the learning curve, you will be glad that you found it.
Whether you want to print publications, create posts for your blog, or accomplish anything that requires writing, WriteMonkey is a handy multi-purpose tool.
If you are a messy author, like me, who opens dozens of tabs or web pages and often forgets which page contains what, Refind will help. Let’s not blame ourselves, though. The frequent push for information is part and parcel of our jobs as writers and bloggers.
Refund, with its extraordinary bookmarking feature, can be your go-to assistant for grabbing bookmarks and sharing or saving them for future use. What’s more, the app lets you find information efficiently by showing only the most relevant pages and doing away with the others.
One of the best features of Refind is its ability to throw saved bookmarks whenever you search for similar information on Google. Pretending to be a social tool, Refind helps you spy on what people in your social network are saving. You can also tweet about these “finds” and take part in social conversations.
5. LibreOffice Writer
Is Microsoft (MS) Office boring you? Make a change.
LibreOffice is the perfect alternative to MS Office. And it’s free! LibreOffice Writer is an efficient word processing software that surpasses the contemporary MS Word with its list of features and templates.
Visit the LibreOffice Template Center to learn more. With templates to suit all styles and all types of articles, this software is visually pleasing and easy to use even for a beginner. With plugins of different kinds, excellent formatting abilities, and an extensive gallery of document templates, LibreOffice is a welcome alternative for a bored writer—or one who’d rather not purchase MS Word.
Often little changes bring the best out in writers. While modern technology can sap our creativity and focus, a small tweak—like the use of a new app—also can increase our level of productivity.
What apps do you use to increase your focus, creativity, and productivity? Tell me in a comment below.=
About the Author
Sanjay Bojan is a blogger and researcher who contributes on various high profile sites including Forbes, Huffington Post, and TechCrunch. For writing wok and brand promotion, you can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.