These apps will help you write more and write better.
by Aisiri Amin
Writing is a liberation for many but sometimes it can be exhausting. It’s during those times that technology comes to your rescue. Be it to avoid distractions or help you improve your writing style, there are a bunch of apps that can help you grow as a writer and increase your productivity.
1. Freedom for iOS and Stay Focused for Android
It’s always when you sit down to finally write that story developing in your world of daydreaming that you find a dozen things to distract you. A Facebook story by a person you have never met or a meme about cats jumping off the sofa or even a tweet about a celebrity you don’t care about. And that’s how it begins. You start with Facebook and three hours later you are reading about staple food of ants (It’s not just me, right?).
So, one way to be more productive in this age where technology dictates our life is to use apps such as Freedom and Stay Focused which block other apps and helps you focus on your writing. For the time set by you, you can’t access any of those distracting apps and so, you end up doing what you are supposed to: write.
Be it penning down the character’s personality traits or giving them quirky clothing, this app helps you do that and much more. It gives you a list of prompts which includes names, plot lines, occupations, obsessions, phobias, locations, behaviors, futuristic locations and ton of other others which you can explore to add more to the character sketch in your head.
Often brainstorming sessions hits a stagnant note after some time. You have an idea in your mind but you struggle to bring it to life. Lists for Writers is for those times. This is a paid app available on both Android and iOS.
3. iA Writer
For focused writing experience, you can use iA Writer. It has easy access to your documents and helps you improve your writing by helping you concentrate. It has a unique focus mode which fades the rest of the text except for the one sentence you want to focus on. You can publish on Medium through this app.
It has a simple interface with tools to aid you with your writing process. It also gives you the option save your document in Dropbox or sync it you Google Drive. This free app is available on both Android and iOS.
Ernest Hemingway famously said: “Write drunk, edit sober” and some took him seriously. So much so that they created an app using his name. One of the most popular editing apps, Hemingway holds true to its name. It helps you write better, avoid common errors and cut down the complex sentences.
If a sentence is highlighted in yellow that means you need to shorten or split it. If it is highlighted in red that means it’s too complicated for the readers to comprehend. From helping you choose better words to identifying when to use active and passive voice, the app is boon for many.
If you are paranoid about handing in a piece of work with errors, try Hemingway. You can always learn a better way to write.
What is the one thing that gets you writing? Most of us would say an idea or thought or a revelation. And it’s often that lack of it that leaves us frustrated. Trying to find our way through the black hole, that is, the dreaded Writer’s Block can be defeating. Ideas can’t be forced but they can be sparked and that’s exactly what The Brainstormer does.
This story generator is designed to help you push your boundaries and will challenge you to find creative new ways to come up with your next big idea.
You start by spinning The Brainstormer which gives three words or phrases. The inner wheel gives you the conflict, the middle gives you style or setting and the outer wheel gives you the subject. Combine them and you might have the premise for your story. This paid app is available on both Android and iOS.
Make music your muse. For every mood, you can find the perfect playlist on Spotify. Soak in it and then pen it down. If you want to get into the headspace of your character, music can be the way to do so. Find the right track and you can immerse yourself in understanding your character in a more in-depth manner.
The lyrics, the background score and the rhythm can sometimes be just the cure you need for your writer’s block. So what are you waiting for? Go listen to some music!
Aisiri Amin is a journalist specialising in social justice, gender issues and culture. She has written for The Hindu and works as a freelance writer. Social wallflower and an idealist at the core, she lives on books, tea and hope (in that particular order).