27 thoughts on “Poll: Writers’ Tools

  1. I use Scrivener and a notebook, primarily. For shorter projects (poems, songs, and short stories) I mostly use a notebook or simply Word. 🙂

    • I tested Scrivener – until I came across yWriter.
      For shorter projects it is the OpenOffice Writer (or Word, if Microsoft products are installed on the respective device). 🙂

    • This is tough! I wrote tons of stuff at university. I was glad when it was over. Everybody complained about my handwriting. I am admittedly more inspired when being in front of an electronic device – typing. 😉

  2. Mindmap and notebooks are easily the tools I use most. I don’t really use computer tools per se. Just Word or Google docs.

    • Mindmaps are pretty useful. Either by using a programme, drawing it yourself – on a board or on paper, include post it notes.
      I tend to print a mindmap and enhance it with post it notes…

      • I pretty much just go freehand. Though sometimes I add to it with post-its. Especially if I’m bringing together some of the ideas from the brainstorm.

    • I am glad that I am not the only one – my fingers can never keep up with my grey cells’ imagination. As stated in a previous comment, photos support story creation. If in company, my little black notebook is the only accepted tool. 😉

      • I am not at all visual, but think almost entirely in words. However, people with good imaging ability can benefit from guided imagery. You completely relax your body, and go through a suitable script that gets you completely at peace. Then, you turn yourself into one of your characters, face the situation the character faces — and see what happens.

        Magic for making writing vivid, concrete and realistic.


  3. I voted. I must be old school. I just use good old Microsoft Word, and sometimes a notebook. I’ve heard great things about Scrivener, but also that it has a pretty big learning curve, so I haven’t checked it out.

    • Thanks for voting, Miranda. MS Word is a good choice. I tried Scrivener and Writer’s Café – yWriter convinced me the most. I use this only for major projects, though.
      As I often take a pic with my smartphone – for later reference, I wonder why no one wrote about this option so far.

  4. I’m with Charles… Word and a notepad. Why over-complicate things? I tried Scrivenor and Ywriter but they just had a load of fancy stuff I knew I would never use. I have been quite happy with the ease and simplicity of Word.

    • This is a classic and excellent choice, Ali. I have to combine several media – as I never know when inspiration strikes next. 😉

  5. I’m old fashioned – I do 90% of my writing, plotting and organizing in my head. I often take notes on a notpad or scraps of paper, but that accounts for maybe 1% of my writing etc. I also take notes and write snippets in Word. For a short story the whole thing is written in my head and I dictate it to myself in Word.

    • There’s nothing bad about your process, Trent. My little black notebook does come in handy when on the road or in company. Nobody has ever complained about my writing fits. 😀
      My flash fiction is born in my head, thoughts are transferred to Word, then copied to In A Small Compass…

      • This is great. And you are living proof that it works!
        As I seemingly have to be elsewhere all the time, I need to use every possible way to ‘save’ my inspiration. As soon as I’ve seen it written, it is never forgotten.

      • It does put me in the position of only being able to work from my laptop, but my phone tends to despise me anyway. So it doesn’t make much of a difference. I think it really boils down to how much planning and visual pieces are needed by the author. I notice a lot of people use Scrivener and have pictures of their characters. Surprisingly I see Matt Bomer and Ryan Gosling show up quiet often in those screen caps.

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