Good morning, fellow writers! Today is a full freelancing day for me, what are your plans for this lovely Friday?
Today I wanted to talk about different writing programs. With NaNo coming up, we’re all going to be glued to one type of word processing program, whether it is Microsoft Word or a pen and a notebook. I wanted to highlight some of my internet finds. Hopefully you can find something in the list that may help you win NaNo or be productive in general.
1) Written Kitten (which can be found here)
This is a simple internet based program which feeds off of your love of adorable kittens. For every 100, 200, 500, or 1000 words (you set the pace) that you write, an image of an adorable kitten will pop up in the right panel. It’s called positive reinforcement. Pretty snazzy, huh?
After you are done with a scene, cut and paste your progress into Microsoft Word (or whatever word processing program you use to save your work). Since it is just an internet based program, I suggest you do this often. You know, just in case.
If you’re not fond of kittens (really?), there is also Written Puppy.
2) Write or Die (which can be found here)
While Written Kitten is uses positive reinforcement to keep you motivated. Write or Die uses negative reinforcement. Truthfully, for me, I find that this works better at keeping me typing. Sometimes my work doesn’t make sense but that’s another topic.
Okay, it works like this: there are different formats (desktop, internet, iPad, etc.) but they all function the same. The internet version is free, by the way. You pick your settings:
How strict do you want the program to be? You can choose forgiving, strict, or evil. Depending on your choice, you will have a different amount of time that you can stop writing before one of the consequences kicks in.
What consequences would you like? If you pick “gentle” a dialog box will pop up, reminding you to keep writing. If you pick “normal” you will hear an unpleasant sound (on the desktop version you can pick your sound — I picked “Rick Astley’s “Never Going To Give You Up”) after you stop writing. If you pick “kamakaze” (you are a brave man) your work will start, ahem, unwriting itself if you stop writing.
Pick a word goal. For example, “I want to write 1000 words.”
Pick a time limit goal. For example, “I want to write for 15 minutes.”
When it comes to goals, you can choose one or both. After you’re done with that, you write. And write and write and write. When you want to save, you have to copy and paste your work into your word processor (just like with Written Kitten).
3) Scrivener(which can be found here)
I’m going to be using Scrivener for NaNo this year. I’ve just used a combination of Microsoft Word and OneNote (for planning) in the past but Scrivener is similar to those two programs combined. It was made for writers (screenwriters, novelists, etc.). It is a full word processing program (about $40) where you can plan, plot, write, revise, finalize, and convert your manuscript. There are way too many cool options for me to list here so head over to the website if you’re curious. It is totally worth the $40.
4) Writer: the Internet Typewriter (which can be found here)
This is a very simple program. It’s a black screen with a blinking green cursor. That’s all there is too it. The reason I liked this so much is because of it’s simplicity. I can just plug in my headphones, listen to my writing playlist, and working (after I hit F11 to make it full screen). I just disappear into my own little world.
If you have a writing program that you like to use (and that I haven’t listed), share it with us in the comments section below. We’d love to hear about your writing tools!