writing and planning software to try

  • novelWriter

    Free Windows Linux Qt Website

    novelWriter is a Markdown-like text editor designed for writing novels and larger projects of many smaller plain text documents. It uses its own flavor of Markdown that supports a meta data syntax for comments, synopsis and cross-referencing between files. It's designed to be a simple text editor that allows for easy organization of text files and notes, built on plain text files for robustness.

    The plain text storage is suitable for version control software, and also well suited for file synchronization tools. The core project structure is stored in a project XML file. Other meta data is primarily saved in JSON files.

    novelWriter is not a full-feature Markdown editor. It allows for a minimal set of formatting needed for writing text documents for novels. These are currently limited to:

    • Headings level 1 to 4 using the # syntax only.
    • Emphasized and strong text. These are rendered as italicized and bold.
    • Strikethrough text.
    • Hard line breaks using two or more spaces at the end of a line.

    Features not supported in the editor are also not exported when using the export tool.

    The core export format of novelWriter is HTML5. You can also export the entire project as a single novelWriter Markdown-flavor document. In addition, other exports to Open Document, PDF, and plain text is offered through the Qt library, although with limitations to formatting.

    Other features include:

    • Syntax highlighting for the editor and syntax highlight themes
    • User interface themes including dark theme
    • Auto save documents and project files on a set timer
    • Document stats including word count
    • Easily organize files in root folders and sub folders
    • Assign tags to notes

    More information can be found on the Github page.


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  • Plot Factory

    Freemium Web Software as a Service (SaaS) Website

    A tailor-made writing application for fiction writers that lets you plan, organize, and write stories and series. You can create story outlines from pre-defined templates, create and manage rich and interesting characters, build immersive fictional worlds and more.

    The writing portion is split into chapters and scenes and are easily organizable and sortable. You can even create and playback AI-generated voice narrations to see how well your story flows. You can also create online beta reader previews to easily share and get feedback.


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  • Seequill

    Commercial Web Website

    Online story-writing platform. Free for offline use. Only $30/year for full features. Organize your stories, track characters and locations. Groundbreaking plot interface.


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  • Shaxpir

    Freemium Mac Windows Website

    Brainstorm your next novel by building a rich, elaborate world of characters, places, and themes.


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  • SceneOne.app

    Commercial Web Software as a Service (SaaS) Website

    A web-based writing app. It is designed by novelists to have the tools and workflows they need yet be simple to use, and runs on every device (Windows, Mac, phones, etc).


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  • Inspire Writer

    Commercial Windows Windows S Website

    Inspire is a clone of Small Ulysses iconUlysses for Windows, with many of the core features but not all.

    Elegant, simple markup editor that mimics the Ulyssess (for Mac only) look and feel. Not as feature rich though.
    Beautiful and minimalist writing-focused interface
    Markup-based text editor with syntax highlighting
    A single library holds everything you write
    Auto-save & auto-backup
    Distraction-free mode
    Full keyboard navigation support
    Export as PDF, DOCX, HTML, MD, TXT and more
    Publish to WordPress
    Lifetime free updates


    Inspire Writer icon

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