Writing a book is hard. I’ve written seven books and at some point during each one I had the thought, “There has to be a tool, a piece of book writing software, that would make this easier.”
May 16, 2015 4. Writing the ebook & file logistics. Promoting the ebook as a free giveaway. Getting the ebook to readers. Choose an app to create your ebook. My recommendation. For an easy way to make ebooks, I recommend Pages (Mac) and Powerpoint (Windows and Mac). These two apps tick the following boxes which are important to factor in when. Aug 13, 2018 Before we start talking about the writing apps for Mac, let me make it clear, no writing app can improve your writing magically, that can only be achieved with a lot of practice. Having said that, using a good writing app will assist you in writing, so that you can get the words out of your mind and onto the proverbial paper. They spend so much time searching for the “perfect” book writing software (among other tools) that will magically make their writing better. Let me spare you time and money: software is not a relevant consideration for writing a great book. In fact, most writing software adds complexity without any value. (Exhibit A: Scrivener.).
Bad news/good news: writing a book will always be hard, and the best piece of writing software in the world won’t write your book for you. But the good news is there is book writing software that can make the process a little easier.
In this post, we will cover the ten best pieces of software for writing a book and look at the pros and cons of each.
Click the links below to get our review on the best writing software.
Best Writing Software: Contents
Worst Pieces of Software for Writing a Book
First, though, let’s cover software you should avoid, at least while you’re writing a book:
- Video Games. Especially World of Warcraft (always always always!) but also Solitaire, Sudoku, Angry Birds, and, for me right now, Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes.
- Facebook, Twitter, and Other Social Media Software. Do I really need to say more? Fortunately there’s a piece of book writing software for avoiding this very distracting software (see Freedom below).
- Other Productive Software Not Directly Associated With Your Writing. Yes, it’s good to reconcile your bank account on Quickbooks or make sure you’re up to date on your calendar app, but responsible, well-meaning work can easily be an excuse for a quick distraction that turns into a major distraction from writing your book.
Set aside time for your writing every day and then stay focused!
If you need a game, make writing your daily word count your game.
If you want more “likes” on social media, imagine how great getting five-star reviews on your book will be.
If you need to check your bank balance several times a day, think about what your bank balance will be when you stop checking it constantly, finish your book, and become a successful author.
The 10 Best Pieces of Book Writing Software
No piece of writing software will write your book for you, but these ten will help. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each.
1. Scrivener (Word Processor)
Scrivener is the premier book writing software. It is made by writers for writers. Scrivener’s “binder” view allows you to break up your book into chapters and sections and easily reorganize it. Project targets let you create word count goals and then track your progress daily. Its composition mode can help you stay focused by removing all the clutter. Plus, it allows you to format for publishing (e.g. on Amazon or Barnes & Noble).
There are some problems with Scrivener. Formatting is more complicated than it needs to be and collaborating isn’t easy, meaning it loses its effectiveness as soon as you bring on an editor. But it more than makes up for that by being so helpful in the early stages of the writing process.
In fact, we believe in Scrivener so much, we published a book about how creative writers can write more, faster using it. It’s called Scrivener Superpowers. If you’re using Scrivener or want to save yourself time as you learn how to use it for your creative writing, you can get Scrivener Superpowers here. The next edition comes out on Tuesday!
Cost: $49 for Mac, $45 for Windows
You can get a copy of Scrivener here, or learn more about how to use the software with one of these resources:
- Scrivener Superpowers by M.G. Herron
2. Google Docs (Word Processor)
While Scrivener is the best book writing software, once you get to editing and getting feedback, it begins to fall short.
That’s why Google Docs has become my second go-to piece of book writing software. It’s free, very easy to use, and requires no backups since everything is in the cloud.
Best of all are its collaboration abilities, which allow you to invite your editor to the document and then watch as he or she makes changes, tracked in suggestion mode, and leave comments on your story (see screenshot below).
3. Google Sheets (Spreadsheet)
If you’d told me when I was first trying to become a writer that one of my most-used tools in my book writing software toolkit would be a spreadsheet, I would have told you I didn’t major in English to have to use a spreadsheet.
But now, as I’m finishing my twelth book, I realize that I’m using spreadsheets almost daily.
Spreadsheets allow you to get a sense of the elements of your book at a glance, and when you’re working on a 300-page document, distilling it down to useable information becomes very necessary.
You might use spreadsheets for:
- Character tracking
- Scene lists
Google Sheets is perfect for this because it’s free and you can quickly share your documents with your writing partners, editors, or beta readers to get feedback. Microsoft Excel is another great option, but for writers, I suggest Google Sheets.
4. Vellum (Book Formatting/Word Processor)
If you want to turn your book into an eBook, it’s not that hard. Scrivener, Word, Pages, they all can make eBooks. But that doesn’t mean they’ll look good. In fact, it takes a lot of skill and effort to make an eBook look good on any of those word processors. That’s why I love Vellum so much.
Vellum makes beautiful eBooks.
Vellum picks up where Scrivener, Word, and Pages leave off, giving you a tool to make great looking eBooks every time.
The most important part of this is the previewer (see the image below), which lets you see how each formatting change or book edit you make will appear on Kindle, Fire, iPhone, Nook, and other eReaders.
It also has stripped-down, option-based formatting, which is perfect for designing eBooks.
Recipe Book Writing Software For Macs
I really love this app!
UPDATE: Vellum recently expanded into formatting for paperback books! I haven’t tried it yet but it looks awesome!
Cost: $199 for eBook generation, $249 for Paperback Formatting
5. Freedom (Productivity App)
One question writers always ask me is, “How can I stay focused enough to finish what I write?”
I have too many thoughts on this for this article, but as far as writing software to encourage focus, I recommend Freedom.
Freedom allows you to block your biggest distractions online, including both websites and mobile apps, for a set period of time. So when you mindlessly escape your book to scroll through Facebook, you’ll find the site won’t load.
You can also schedule recurring sessions, so that at a scheduled time (e.g. Mondays from 6 am to 10 am), you won’t be able to access the sites on your blocklist, even if you try.
There are other apps like this that we’ve written about before, notably Self-Control for Mac and StayFocused for Windows. But Freedom goes further, allowing you to block sites on both your computer and your phone, and enabling recurring sessions.
You can learn more about how writers can get the most out of Freedom on our review here.
Cost: $29 / year for Pro version, which I use and recommend (Free trial available)
6. Microsoft Word (Word Processor)
Again: no piece of book writing software is going to write your book for you. If you’re looking for the next “shiny new toy” to help you write your book, it might be an excuse to avoid doing the hard work of writing.
Most of us learned how to use computers by using Microsoft Word, or a program like it. Word gets the job done. Sure, Scrivener is a little better for books, but I wrote my first book on Word and it’s fine.
I wrote a long review of the pros and cons of using Word to write books—the main problem is that as your document grows, it becomes more and more difficult to work with, whereas with Scrivener, it becomes easier—but the point is, if Word is what you have, don’t let that stop you from finishing your book.
As Jeff Elkins said in his review of Word, “If you aren’t already putting in the hard work to be the kind of writer you want to be, it doesn’t matter what new writing software you invest in. It is not going to help.”
Cost: $69 / year from Amazon (includes Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, and other Microsoft software)
7. Ulysses (Word Processor)
When I’m writing for a long time, I like to get up and go for a walk. Sometimes, I wish I could continue writing while I walk. Other times, I come up with an idea while I’m walking, type it up on my phone, and then want to easily move what I wrote to my laptop without having to go through the hassle of emailing it back and forth to myself.
That’s where Ulysses comes in.
Ulysses is a word processor for Mac that allows you to sync between all your devices, so you have what you need wherever you are. Scrivener recently released their iOS app which allows you to do this as well, but the process is clunky and requires you to purchase both the desktop and iOS apps. Ulysses’ sync makes the process much more seamless.
Like Scrivener, it has a binder-like sidebar that allows you to move documents around. Ulysses is not designed specifically for books so it takes a little configuring to make it work for you, but once you have it set up the way you want it’s very intuitive.
And while I hate Markdown, I actually like the paired-down formatting options Ulysses gives. Overall, I’m not going to convert from Scrivener to Ulysses any time soon, but I think it’s a great option for most writers.
8. Microsoft Excel (Spreadsheets)
As Jeff Elkins says in his review of Microsoft Excel, it’s great, but “it’s a little like bringing a bazooka to a knife fight. You will need only a small fraction of its capability.”
If you have Excel and love it, great. Otherwise, use Google Sheets, especially if you’re sharing your sheet with a collaborator or editor.
Cost: $69 / year from Amazon (includes Word, Powerpoint, Outlook, and other Microsoft software)
9. ProWritingAid (Grammar/Spell Check)
Can book writing software replace an editor?
Definitely not. But if you ask Alice Sudlow, our in-house editor, she’s tell you, “If you don’t have access to an editor (or if you do, but you don’t want to hire them to edit your emails or Facebook posts), grammar checking software like ProWritingAid is an accessible, affordable alternative.
If you struggle with grammar, sentence structure, spelling, or even writing style, ProwritingAid can help. It goes far beyond your built-in spell-check.
You should still learn grammar skills, but ProWritingAid can help you start to see the patterns and grow as a writer.
There’s a free version that’s very good. It can even be installed into your browser or Word processor, so you can check your grammar wherever you write. The paid version, just $60 a year (less than half of what Grammarly costs), gives you additional support on sentence structure, style, and vocabulary.
Learn more about how writers can get the most out of ProWritingAid here.
Cost: Free! (Premium version is $60 / year)
10. Hemingway App (Grammar/Style Checker)
Most writers think their sentences are easier to read than they are. You think you’re coming across clearly, that your writing makes sense, but then someone reads it and comes away with something totally different.
Hemingway App helps with that.
Hemingway App is a free website that checks readability. You can copy and paste your writing into the website’s input box. Then it will grade your writing based on your used of adverbs, passive voice, and sentences as units.
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Hemingway App is useful, but even the best book writing software can’t replace a good editor.
The 7 Tools Every Writer Needs
Every professional has a set of tools at their disposal that not only makes their job possible, but makes them better at doing it. Writing is no different, and while the right software is important, it’s just one of the many tools you need as a writer.
That’s why we published a free 22-page eBook, 7 Tools to Help You Write a Novel. In this short guide, we’ll cover some of the basic tools that form the foundation of a writing life.
You can download it for free here. Enjoy!
The Most Essential Book Writing Software
Imagine it’s three thousand years ago. You’re sitting around a campfire with some of your family and friends, tired from the day’s work. You begin to tell a story. It’s one you’ve told before, told a hundred times. You can see faces around the fire, the children with their eyes wide, the men and women who have heard the story before but still enjoy it because it brings meaning to their lives.
Storytellers—writers—have existed since the beginning of humanity. They didn’t always have book writing software. They didn’t have the printing press or the internet. They didn’t always even have the alphabet to write their stories down.
Instead, storytellers had their imaginations, their voices, and a rapt audience.
You don’t need book writing software to write a great story. Book writing software can make the process a little faster or easier, but the truth is great stories will always exist, no matter what kind of software we have.
The only three things essential to writing a great book:
- Your imagination
- Your words
- A desire to tell your story
That’s all you need. Do you want to write your book? If you do, then do it. Write it. Nothing is stopping you except you. So go get writing.
What pieces of book writing software do you use? Let us know in the comments.
The world is full of powerful software to help you write your book. In the end, though, all these tools are just that—tools. The stories you imagine and your discipline to put the words on the page are far more important.
So for this practice, set aside all the fancy software. Eliminate all the bells and whistles and open up your computer’s native text editor (TextEdit for Mac or Notepad for Windows). Take fifteen minutes to write without any distractions. Continue your work in progress, or start a new story based on this prompt:
A student discovers one of their teachers is not what they appear to be.
When you’re done, share your writing practice in the comments. And if you share, be sure to leave feedback for your fellow writers!
Recipe Manager Software – let us create our very own recipe database.
Is your passion in life is cooking? Do you love to try best recipes from all around the world? Then you must know how valuable these recipes are, and you must store them in such a way, that generation after generation it can be passed on.
Through technological advancement recipe managers software is capable of storing numerous recipes in a virtual platform. You can upload your recipes and add videos too. Software details of this type discussed below:
It is an extremely fun software for sharing your recipes. The unique features it offers are- It has a user-friendly interface, your own recipes can be added easily, equipped with auto generation of the shopping list and plans for menu and import and export of recipes from the internet possible. Compatible with windows, Android, Mac, iOS, and kindle.
Now You’re Cooking!
This recipe software has the ability to store recipes by importing your own recipes and importing recipes from the net in 14 languages. Nutritional value analysis and calculation of diet possible for any recipe. Supports Windows operating system, and has a 60 day trial pack available, full version needs to be purchased.
This is a Recipe organizer software for adding your own recipes with no limitations to any ingredients. It is an easy and fast program which can plan your meals, can organize shopping list for ingredients and gives you the freedom of creating your own e-book. 15 day trial period available, full version needs purchasing.
It is a software tool needed to organize recipes against cooking for home or cooking for professional needs, and all related activities and turning into custom cookbooks. Planning the menus, shopping list, meals and calculation of nutritional value for each recipe. Compatible with Windows and Android devices. 1 year subscription free if ordered.
Living Cookbook 2015
This is an extremely good software for entering as much as recipes you want and its related notes, images and videos. It works as a calculator of nutritional benefits against each recipe. Planning meals, downloading recipes and sharing recipes with friends made easy. 30 Days trial available, then buy the full version.
This is a Recipe software for Mac computers, for adding your own recipes and it enables you to import recipes from the 11 most popular recipe websites available. It can create grocery list, plan the menus and makes browsing, e-mailing and printing your favourite recipes very easy. Recipe cards can be created for distributing in any parties too.
Computer Cuisine Deluxe 7.0
Through this powerful software you can create your own recipes and organize them by uploading. Import innumerable lip smacking recipes from various sources of the net. It is compatible with devices using Windows and Mac operating system, and also with iOS devices like ipads and iphones. Free demo version available and full version needs to be purchased.
It is a recipe management software and provides a very easy to use interface which can organize all the recipes and calculate its nutritional value. You can create high quality themes for each recipes and add notes and images corresponding to that. It is compatible with Mac operating system and all Apple devices.
What is Recipe Manager Software?
Recipe manager software are used for storing a collection of recipes on a virtual platform which can be accessed through computers, laptops, tabs and even smartphones. This software are made to perform their task in a very smart way. Some very useful and unique features are instilled into them for performing according to our needs. Importing and exporting of recipes from various platforms are possible through this. For each recipe, its nutritional value can be analyzed for calculating a number of calories you are to consume from the food. This helps in creating a proper diet for each individual.
Meal planning and shopping list creation for ingredients can be auto created. Organizing the recipes and adding needed information through videos, images and notes are also the features which this software supports. It can calculate a number of ingredients you need for each recipe requested by you. It can create different themes for each recipe.
How to install Recipe Manager Software?
From the various Recipe manager software available in the market you will have to pick whichever suits your needs and supports your operating system for the device you use. The next step involves downloading the installation file into your system. After that run the file and follow the instructions available through the installation wizard. When it is done, start the program by clicking on its icon. When it starts, the interface will be there to guide as what is to be done next. Upload your recipes, import from various sites, add images and how to videos and save your valuable recipes as a part of your possession.
Benefits of Installing Recipe Manager Software
Recipe manager software plays a very important part in our day to day life. People who are interested in cooking or has cooking as their passion in life always would prefer to store their collection of recipes properly. Jotting down the recipes or getting printouts and making a spiral book file is ok. But needs tremendous care and space in keeping them. Even heavy recipe books are very difficult to handle and might get lost. For avoiding these problems, for proper organization of your recipes, this software come to rescue.
You can store millions of recipes of your choice, can plan your meals by assembling few recipes together and can share your culinary skills with every friends and family of yours by creating e-books as well. By getting this software you can have a recipe database anyone can be jealous of and which can be passed on to the generations to follow.
Free Windows Recipe Manager Software
BigOven is the best option available, if you are looking for free windows Recipe manager software. The features provided by this software includes, organizing the recipes, saving any recipe from the net, creating grocery lists, nutritional value analysis and creating meal plans and exporting recipes of your own on the internet.
Free Android Recipe Manager Software
My Cookbook is the best option for managing your prized recipes for your Android smartphones and tabs. The free cookbook software offers you features of storing numerous recipes, importing recipes of your own or through the internet and a single click search feature. This recipe manager app is free of any type of virus threat.
Free Mac Recipe Manager Software
Recipe Manager for Mac is the best free Recipe manager software available in the market for Mac operating system. It is a simple basic software for entering all your recipes for planning your menu and planning the shopping for food items. This does not require installation, launch directly when download finishes.
Other good Recipe Manager Software Available
There are many other options for Recipe manager software available in the market. The names of such software are Shop’NCook, Pepperplate, Evernote Food, Side chef, Kitchen tories, Tender, Appetites, Paprika recipe manager for mac and Paprika recipe manager for PC. Paprika recipe manager free download available as trial also, Paprika recipe manager review is very good and it is recommended. All the other software mentioned are also very good as per experts and user reviews.
Most Popular Recipe Manager Software for 2016
MasterCook has been considered as the best and most popular Recipe manager software for 2016, according to users and expert reviews. Over 8000 recipes come equipped with this software. Menu planning and shopping for food planning features are supported here and verbal instructions for cooking is also available. It makes the experience of being in the kitchen and cooking more worthy.