Skip to main content

Do You Need a Piece of Software for Creative Writing? Here Are a Few of Them

Do you know that there are a number of programs available for creative writers? Yes, there are. Writers don't depend alone on word processors for their craft, just because writing a novel is more complex a process than writing a small article or short story. It is more of a brain activity than just text formatting and color selection. So, a dedicated piece of software can make the job easier.

In creative writing, mainly in the areas of novel writing and short fiction writing, there are tasks such as imagining a number of characters; developing their individual biographies, most of which may not even be mentioned in the final output; and marking plot points, which can have significance in the progress of the novel. For these tasks, nobody would think a word processor alone is enough. Here are a number of software programs that help you in your writing. I have two sections. In the first, I have high-end, feature-rich software, which are not free. In the second part, I have a program that comes completely free.

High-end Applications

1. Dramatica Pro
Dramatica Pro Creative Writing SoftwareDramatica Pro Creative Writing Software
TopTenReviews.com recently rated this program as the absolute best for creative writers. It got all four rating amounting to a Gold. The program feature set includes structure guide (outlines guide that helps developing storyline), brainstorming (that helps get new ideas), character illustrations (helps visualize characters), conflict development (helps make twists and conflicts in the story), plot development, etc. This software works with all platforms and operating systems.

2. Power Writer
Power Writer low cost Creative Writing SoftwarePower Writer low cost Creative Writing Software
Power Writer was rated at Silver by TopTenReviews.com. It doesn't have all the features of the above program. It still is easy-to-use, low-price software for writers. Power Writer is not yet available for Windows Vista.

3. Story View
Story View Feature-rich Creative Writing SoftwareStory View Feature-rich Creative Writing Software
Story View is a high-priced program packed with features like structure guide, brainstorming, etc. Its rated at bronze, may be due to the price. Story View is easy to install as well; it is available for all platforms except Windows Vista.

4. StoryBase
StoryBase Low feature low price Creative Writing SoftwareStoryBase Low feature low price Creative Writing Software
Low-priced Storybase is not as rich in features as other software programs above. It has features like conflict development, plot development, and brainstorming. It is not yet available for Vista.

5. Power Structure
Power Structure Feature-rich creative writing softwarePower Structure Feature-rich creative writing software
Power Structure is high-priced and feature packed. Its help and support system is rated low by the reviewers. It is available for all major platforms except Windows ME; which I guess doesn't affect most people!

Aside from these features mentioned, these software have other basic word processor features such as, spellchecking, word count report, etc. There are only a few exceptions, such as Dramatica Pro doesn't have spell-checking or word count. Before you make a purchase, analyze the software fully and check to see if all features you need are there in it.

Free Software Program for Writers

Though you may wish to purchase a software application for more features and better writing development, I have a recommended completely free software application. This is yWriter from Spacejock Software.

This program helps you in your creative process by breaking down the work into scenes and plot points. I was surprised to see this program is completely free. You can donate of course to the site, and I recommend it much.

Conclusion

I can't think how deeply the technological revolution affected our lives. Everything is breeze nowadays. Imagining the times of people like Charles Dickens and Victor Hugo, I can say only one thing. Those people wrote the best of the English Classics at a time when such technological advancement was not even a remote dream. And they are still thought of as the best writers ever. Which means, you just need a word processor to write a great novel if you have that talent, which ultimately is the most important thing.

Related Entries:

Creative Writing Prompts

Copyright © Lenin Nair 2008

Comments

  1. It seems a little like cheating. I wouldn't know where to start with something like this. It is hard enough figuring out the basics of a program like microsoft publisher.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I really can't imagine using software to create a plot (and I'm a big geek).

    Hmmm, but I can imagine the writers in Hollywood doing such a thing...

    ReplyDelete
  3. An additional software that writers may find useful is an organizational and notes software called NoteScribe. With NoteScribe you can store all of your thoughts, ideas, and research for your next book, article, or blog, and then retrieve your notes using a variety of methods including a global search function to find specific words or phrases in your notes.

    If you'd like to learn more about how NoteScribe could help you keep your notes more organized, please visit www.NoteScribe.net to see more features or to see our video overviews, and to get a 30-day free trial.

    Thank you all for your time.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for the yWriter mention, and the link.

    Anyone a bit dubious about writing software just has to think of it as a word processor which breaks your novel down into chapters and scenes, and allows you to add comments and notes to them. Any additional features can be ignored.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Well let me add Roughtdraft to your list of recommended software, and add my vote for Spacejock software.

    I am using roughdraft for short fiction. Longer fiction requires better organization and background.

    And I'd be remiss not to add Liquid Story binder, and on the mac Jer's Writing Hut and Storymill, writer specific, and for more general apps...Scrivener.

    Right now using power structure and power writer, and as I said Roughdraft, which is completely free

    Nadin

    ReplyDelete
  6. A word or so about Dramatica. Dramatica level one helps build and organize your plots, characters, first draft etc. without going so deeply into it that you write yourself out before you create your novel.

    Level two lets you analyse what you've written to make sure that ALL of the elements you wanted are actually in there.

    In my opinion, level three is best used by your editor or colaborator for an analysis that leads to the final ready for prime time draft.

    The thing I don't like about the program is that it makes planning so in depth that it presents a danger of burnout. I think too much planning is worse than none.

    Nevertheless, I consider Dramatica the best software available for the construction/deconstruction of the novel.

    As well as being a great tool for novelists, it would be an outstanding assist to academicians who specialize in the analysation of literature.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sometimes you need a distraction-free environment to write. And for that, Q10 is the tool you need. (www.baara.com/q10/)
    It is a full screen text editor. Period.
    No toolbars, No menus, nothing. Just you and your text.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Comments are moderated very strictly

Popular posts from this blog

What Is the Difference Between Hardcover and Paperback?

Today, my reader, Rahman contacted me with a doubt:

Dear Lenin, would you explain why there are two types of books: hardcover and paperback?
This is quite a simple affair and there are explanatory articles to be found at various places on the Net. Here is my addition.

Hardcover

A hardcover aka hardback is a book bound with thick protective cover, with usually a paper or leather dust jacket over the main cover. The aim of hardcover is protection and durability. These books are mainly for long-term use and collectors’ editions. Hardcover books last far longer than the corresponding paperbacks. They do not get damaged easily thus making them perfect for reference guides, great literary works, etc.

In addition, there is a difference in the type of paper used to print hardcover books. The paper used is long-lasting acid-free type. Acid-free paper has a pH value of 7 (neutral) which makes it highly durable. The papers are stitched and glued to the spine.

Hardbacks are prepared for commercial …

En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen

We have three types of dashes in use: The hyphen, En Dash, and the Em Dash. In this post, we will see how to use them all correctly.

Hyphen (-)

The hyphen is the minus key in Windows-based keyboards. This is a widely used punctuation mark. Hyphen should not be mistaken for a dash. Dash is different and has different function than a hyphen.

A hyphen is used to separate the words in a compound adjective, verb, or adverb. For instance:

The T-rex has a movement-based vision.
My blog is blogger-powered.
John’s idea was pooh-poohed.


The hyphen can be used generally for all kinds of wordbreaks.

En Dash (–)

En Dash gets its name from its length. It is one ‘N’ long (En is a typographical unit that is almost as wide as 'N'). En Dash is used to express a range of values or a distance:

People of age 55–80 are more prone to hypertension.
Delhi–Sidney flight was late by three hours.


In MS Word, you can put an En Dash either from the menu, clicking Insert->Symbol or by the key-combination, Ctrl + Num…

What Is the Meaning of the Word 'Ghajini'? Story and Trivia of Aamir Khan's New Film [Special]

[Special Entry]



Aamir Khan's latest film is titled a little weirdly for the taste of Hindi filmgoers. 'Ghajini': They have never heard of such a name, and such a word never existed in Hindi or in any other Indian language.

The name Ghajini is the name of the villain of the film. In Tamil version, the name of the villain was Laxman.

As a Tamil moviegoer, I have already watched Ghajini and know the story in full.

So, What Does the Title Mean?

In Tamil, the title of the film is inspired by the story of Mahmud of Ghazni, an ancient invader of India. This person was so persistent in invading India that he continued trying after several failures. In the film too, the protagonist is such persistent in finding out and killing the villain of the film, who had killed his girlfriend, Kalpana (played by Asin). Aamir's Character (named Sanjay Ramaswamy in Tamil), is a short-term amnesiac, who cannot remember anything more than fifteen minutes.

You may ask then how the Ghazni became…