Mobility in Writing

Mobile apps are available to assist writers at any stage of their writing careers. These can range from dictionary apps, to apps that help you when writing prose. A good dictionary app is helpful to all people, be they professional authors or just someone who enjoys the English language. I don’t know of a single person who cannot find a basic dictionary useful, such as the

1) Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary. This dictionary also provides lists of antonyms, parts of speech, and basic grammar rules to assist any writer in finding the appropriate word for the sentence on which they may be stuck!

2) Help! For Writers app is available on iTunes for a nominal cost of only $1.99. The Help! For Writers mobile app outlines 5 steps in the writing process: getting started, hunting and gathering, finding a focus, writing a first draft, and making it better. This app takes the writer on a step-by-step guide go writing and publishing your first book, and even touches on the marketing aspects of selling your writer first book. Other helpful apps for the stumped writer in all of us include:

3) Spice Mobile: A Phrase Thesaurus & History of the English Language – This app functions as both a phone and tablet application and is designed for on-the-go access to a comprehensive phrase thesaurus. This clever writing app is sure to spark your creative energy. 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 views of history

4) Write or Die: Great for Procrastinators

Although the name itself is a little callous, it probably applies to most of us at one time or another!

  • 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

5) Dragon Dictation: Not Being Close to 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

6) Evernote: Ever Yours, Ever Mine, Ever Useful!

This app is useful to all of us in helping to organize notes, web clips and  files. All of these things  and images are made available on every device and computer you use. Collect your 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 extremely-useful tool into your own collection.

Learn more at

 7) My Writing Spot: Pick a Spot, ANY Spot!

This app provides a simple, uncluttered writing workspace. In this case, uncluttered doesn’t mean lack of usable features. 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

8) Index Cards: Remember Those?

This is a corkboard writing app for iPad or iPhone that makes it easy to capture, organize, and compile y8)our 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 and 1- X?). 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

9) Notes Plus: From Scribbling to Styling!

While there are plenty of fun note-taking apps (Penultimate is one) this particular writing app for iPad lets you scribble your thoughts, then circle the ones you want and covert them to text, without having to retype all of them. There are some great demo videos on the website. The app also lets you import pdfs, web text/graphics, audio and more to really rock your research!

Learn more at notesplusapp

These nine applications can all be helpful to any writer, from the novice to the expert, but they are not in any way a comprehensive list of apps available to the writer at any stage in their career. If any od you have used these apps, please leave a comment telling me which app, and why? I’m interested in knowing which app you used, and if it helped you !

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