What is your favorite writing app, software, or tools? Would you recommend them? Which is your all-time favorite?

Insecure Writers Want to Know

I don’t have any fancy tools, apps, or software for writing. Tech-challenged, remember? I just use my brain, any research I’ve done, my creativity, and Microsoft Word to create my stories, essays, or blog posts. I’m so old school. I create a folder with a tentative title or description for the new work-in-progress; then open a document and start typing.

Insecure Writers Group logo

I do prefer the computer over a typewriter, though, because I can jump around in my story, place asterisks and notes to myself for when I return to that section. I can “search and find” in the document. I can write the ending and then move backward in the story. So much easier to correct, add, and delete words, sentences, and sections using a computer.

Now this isn’t to say that my new folder is not chock full of documents. I have a “research notes” file. A “rough draft” of the story, which contains all the plot points and scenes I want for the story. I have a “cutouts” document. I’m always afraid I might want to add that bit of description or that clarification or scene back into the “working story” document later in the writing. And then there is a “to send story” document. And finally, a “pitch letter” and/or “cover letter” document. About six documents. More if I have a beta reader.

I only have one book-length manuscript—my college memoir—and it’s out for copy edit with Enterprise Book Services. I understand the Microsoft document, Times New Roman, size 12 font, is the accepted manuscript submission for magazines, agents, and small presses. I believe I can lay out the Microsoft document into book format software programs.

Do you have any formatting programs that you use or that you can recommend for e-book and paperback editions? Thank you for any suggestions and insight.

My non-fiction writing presentation at the Haaf Family Arts Foundation Writing Conference went well. At least participants told me they learned a lot. I did, too, from the other presenters. As you have all shared, writers’ conferences are a great way to connect with other writers.  

I have a second article coming out with Business Insider. I don’t know when it will be published yet. This one is about how to make your kids campers. I have camped with my five children and husband for over 20 years. We’ve traveled across the United States and up into Canada and even into Newfoundland. Oh, the treasured memories we have!

Thanks for stopping by my little spot on the web. Please come again! And please sign up for my newsletter. It is greatly appreciated.

This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. I’d like to thank our co-hosts for July: JS Pailly, Rebecca Douglass, Pat Garcia, Louise-Fundy Blue, and Natalie Aguirre! Please visit them if you can.

Our group posts on the first Wednesday of every month. To join us, or learn more about the group, click HERE

14 thoughts on “What is your favorite writing app, software, or tools? Would you recommend them? Which is your all-time favorite?”

  1. It can be very enticing to change to the latest new software. But, there many pitfalls in doing so. Most have very different menu formats and finding specific functions can be time consuming and if not impossible.
    Unless you are compelled to change to satisfy submission requirements stick with what you know.

    • Yes, but don’t the presses layout the book FROM a Word document, Alex?

      As always, thanks for sharing your insight here. Have a great day!

    • Thank you for your good wishes, Natalie. They are greatly appreciated. Thanks for giving your input here. Have a beautiful day.

  2. Just Word here too. Really can’t imagine what using a typewriter was like though – you’d have to be so much more organised from the beginning. Were writers more focused then?

    • Such good questions here, Nick. I can’t imagine how much time and paper they went through for a whole novel. What with re-writes and revision. Have a beautiful day!

  3. Hi, Victoria! I’m old school like you. I love your idea of a cutouts file. I keep saving different versions of manuscript. A cutouts document sounds a lot better. I’d love to hear in the future how your experience with Enterprise Book Services goes. I’ll be looking for something like that down the road. Congrats on your business article. Happy summer!

    • In my cutouts document, I separate the cutouts into chapters, so I know where the info came from.

      Yes, Louise, I’ll let you know how Enterprise works out for me. Thanks for your good wishes. Stay strong, dear friend.


Leave a Comment