This is the beginning of a blog post by Book Printing UK. There are some good apps in here that I hadn't heard of. Check them out.
Do you ever long for those days when the writing just happens? When you’re sat at your desk, sofa, or even propped up in bed and the words just seem to write themselves.
Unfortunately, those days don’t come around as regularly as we would like. And there is no way of planning them.
When it comes to productivity, we all struggle sometimes. The struggle is so universal that thousands of the world’s techiest minds have devoted their time to creating software that cures unproductive days.
It’s safe to say that they’re not quite there yet, but here are seven tools that can help make you a more productive writer. And they’re absolutely free!
1) Write Every Day with Penzu
Penzu is an online journaling tool. The premise is simple; it encourages you to write every day, at a time that you determine. You get regular reminders to encourage you to write — and praise when you do. I mean, who doesn’t like praise?
I’ve been using Penzu for a while now, and it works. You don’t have to write a new chapter of the novel you’re currently working on each time, you can write about anything. The idea is that you get in the habit of writing. We all know how difficult it is to return to writing when you’re out of practice. Penzu ensures that you are never out of practice. So the next time you sit down to work on your book, you’ll find yourself in the zone that bit easier.
2) Go ‘Cold Turkey’ From Online Distractions
Cold turkey was created for students who struggled to focus at university. But then Airbnb was originally for backpackers and that didn’t stop the rest of us getting involved, did it?
With Cold Turkey, you are able to block websites for a certain period of time. It allows you to specify individual websites to be blocked, in case you want to rid yourself of the usual suspects but still have access to sites that are really important. Like Wikipedia, or BookPrintingUK.com.
The great thing about Cold Turkey, is that once you are locked out of visiting sites, it is really, really difficult to get back online before the timer is up. In fact, unless you have studied computing at quite a high level I would say that it is pretty much impossible. The features are computer-wide, so even if you log off and log in as a different user, you still won’t be able to get on Facebook.
Whilst the free version is awesome, Cold Turkey does operate on a freemium model. The paid for version adds some amazing new features and is available for a one-off payment of £13. Frozen Turkey, for example, will lock you out for your entire computer for periods during the day. A great way to ensure you get to bed on time, or to make yourself alternate between work and rest.
Take things a step further and block everything but Word
If going Cold Turkey works for you, consider Write Room (mac) or Dark Room (windows) to block your computer from accessing anything that isn’t Microsoft Word. It’s worth noting that Write Room isn’t free, and whilst Dark Room is, the creator kindly asks for donations. And the tool is so smart it probably does deserve you buying him a coffee.