There's an App for ThatWe’ve heard it said enough: “There’s An App” for that – Does it hold true for authors? We’d say so! In fact there are so many cool apps out there geared to writers that it’s hard to narrow ’em down. But we have, and here’s seven of our favorites for the craft side of the writer’s life…

Spice App1. Spice Mobile: A Phrase Thesaurus & History of the English Language

Functions as a phone and tablet app, designed for on-the-go access to a comprehensive phrase thesaurus. This nifty writing app is sure to spark your creative engine. You can look up a keyword or phrase and see related literary phrases, which can help you come up with a more creative phrase of your own.
  • Easily share phrases by email, text or Twitter
  • Access to over 22,000 phrases
  • Phrase History: up to five oldest source citations
  • Frequency of use per phrase
  • Timelines and graphs for in-depth view of history

Learn more at


Write or Die2. Write or Die: Great for Procrastinators

Well, the name’s a bit harsh but for those of us who need a bit of prodding, Write or Die claims to put the “prod” in productivity by using negative reinforcement.


  • Gentle Mode: A certain amount of time after you stop writing, a box will pop up, gently reminding you to continue writing.
  • Normal Mode: If you persistently avoid writing, you will be played a most unpleasant sound. The sound will stop if and only if you continue to write.
  • Kamikaze Mode: Keep Writing or Your Work Will Unwrite Itself

These consequences will persist until your preset conditions have been met (that is, your time is up or you’ve written you wordcount goal or both.

Learn more at


dragon3. Dragon Dictation: Not Being Near a Keyboard is No Excuse

Dragon Dictation is an easy-to-use voice recognition application powered by Dragon® NaturallySpeaking® that allows you to easily speak and instantly see your text or email messages. This is especially useful for those moments that inspiration strikes  and accessing a keyboard isn’t practical, such as when you’re in line at the grocery store or when you wake up with that amazing idea.

Learn more at


Evernote4. Evernote: Ever Yours, Ever Mine, Ever Useful!

With Evernote, all of your notes, web clips, files and images are made available on every device and computer you use. Collect information from anywhere into a single place. From text notes to web pages to files to snapshots, everything is always at your fingertips.

Evernote’s site has a great video too that will give you ideas of how you can incorporate this uber-useful tool into your own repertoire.

Learn more at


My Writing Spot5. My Writing Spot: Pick a Spot, ANY Spot!

This app provides a simple, uncluttered writing workspace. However, uncluttered doesn’t mean feature-poor. Whether you’re writing a novel or jotting down quick notes, all the essential features are there:

  • Autosave
  • Word Count
  • Dictionary/Thesaurus lookup
  • Document Groups
  • Send to Email
  • Download to Computer

Learn more at


Index Cards6. Index Cards: Remember Those?

This is a corkboard writing app for iPad or iPhone that makes it easy to capture, organize, and compile your ideas. Whether you’re an author, screenwriter or researcher, Index Card can help you become more efficient and organized. This is a nifty app for outlining (remember outlining – when ideas progressed from A-Z?). Features include:

  • Automatically saves your work as you make edits
  • Touch and drag reorder
  • Powerful enough for multiple separate projects
  • Can export as RTF or Plain Text
  • Email projects without leaving the app

Learn more at


Notes Plus 7. Notes Plus: From Scribbling to Styling!

While there are plenty of fun note-taking apps (Penultimate is one) we love this particular writing app for iPad because it lets you scribble your thoughts, then circle the ones you want and covert them to text, without having to retype ’em all. There are some great demo videos on the website (though we prefer using a stylus to note-take vs. sloppy finger-scratching. The app also lets you import pdfs, web text/graphics, audio and more to really rock your research!

Learn more at


Now it’s your turn! Which writing apps have you found to be particularly useful to you? And stay tuned, we’ll be sharing our favorite author social media apps soon, too!


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20 thoughts on “Seven Most Useful Writing Apps for Authors

  • August 13, 2013 at 11:30 pm

    I published 3 books on, the truck-related ones are selling fairly well but my best work (to date) is a love story – murder mystery. Murder Never Sleeps in Cottage Country. It’s only done so-so. Then the light came on: I’m writing mysteries with a trucker theme. Murder doesn’t drive a Peterbilt is almost finished. I owned a long-haul company for many years and I know there are thousands of truckers shut down all over the world – not just North America – log book inspectors are everywhere! A lot of time on their hands and laptops at the ready. I look forward to hearing more from you.
    Seeya Ted Campbell

  • August 13, 2013 at 11:07 pm

    Best app/ software EVER: Freedom. Shuts off your internet access (irreversibly–and you can’t just shut down) for as long as you specify. Beyond priceless.

    • August 13, 2013 at 11:17 pm

      Ah, can definitely understand how useful that would be!

      • August 19, 2013 at 3:26 pm

        Yes, but a writer often still needs access to sites to check content, info, accuracy. I use SelfControl, which blocks you from sites you know you’ll waste time on (you decide which ones and for how long).

        • August 19, 2013 at 11:20 pm

          Love it – great idea!

  • August 13, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Natural Reader. This program will read your text aloud to you. So it helps catch those spelling mistakes that are incorrect words. For example, I found my hero put his had on her shoulder – instead of hand. Microsoft Word didn’t catch that one & our brain will correct words without us realizing it.

    Thank you for this info!

    • August 13, 2013 at 12:37 pm

      Okay, that’s seriously awesome – going to try it out right away – nice to have when a proofreader isn’t nearby! Thanks so much for sharing :)

  • August 13, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I saw your posting through Authors of Romance on LinkenIn. Great info! I’ve subscribed to the blog and look forward to looking over all of your services. I have a new novel coming out soon and always looking for promotional connections.

    Best Regards,

    Linda Joyce

    • August 13, 2013 at 12:45 pm

      Thanks, Linda and welcome to the Writers Win tribe! Shout out with questions or comments any tim.

      And, as you have a book coming out, you may want to look into our Winner Circle – a great way to find the best reviewers (ones with decent traffic, following) in your genre, as well as indie bookshops, a massive list of LIVE book clubs that the team works very hard to grow each week – in all, the Winner Circle not only shrinks the web down to just what you need – it’s a project that a team of six have put quite literally THOUSANDS of hours into… so you don’t have to and can focus on making the contacts, promoting your work, and yeah… writing that next book!

  • August 13, 2013 at 10:32 am

    this was so helpful – thanks

    • August 13, 2013 at 12:56 pm

      Yay! Thanks Annmarie for letting us know and shout out if you see one that needs to be added to our next list :)

  • August 13, 2013 at 9:33 am

    This is a great list. I had not heard of most of these apps. Going to check them out. Thanks.

    • August 13, 2013 at 9:44 am

      Thanks, Abby – do let us know which you end up liking best – we try for a new list ever so often… Write on!

  • August 12, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Very useful. Thanks Shari for this post.

  • August 11, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    I love this list! I’m pretty sure Write or Die would leave me with a broken laptop lying on my lawn, but it’s a neat premise.

    • August 11, 2013 at 9:01 pm

      I know, right? We might all be grounded for life…

  • August 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks for posting these. I’ll be checking some of those out.

    • August 11, 2013 at 1:08 pm

      You’re welcome and let us know which prove most useful!

  • August 11, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    VERY Cool stuff! Ummm…got anything for Blackberry 10? Ha! I use Evernote religiously on my BB but these other apps are cool…very cool :)

    • August 11, 2013 at 1:21 pm

      Most of ’em do have Droid or PC versions (except Notes Plus as isn’t there something built in for that on a Droid?) MyWriter is a free writing app there, too. But Blackberry does have a Notes Plus app also, I believe? Do share the coolest Droid apps you find for the BB crowd, too!

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