If want the freedom to write, without being overwhelmed by the number of features available in popular word processors such as Microsoft Word and Pages for the MAC, there are some excellent distraction-free writing applications.
You don’t have to struggle with complicated formatting, be baffled by how to generate a table of contents or be daunted by more features than you will ever need – the applications below provide you with everything you need simply to write.
The developers of OmmWriter describe their software as ‘your own private writing room where you can close the door behind you to focus on your writing in peace. Everywhere you go, you have access to a beautiful distraction-free writing environment where your authentic voice is free to go where it is meant to go’.
Although there is no set price for the software, a minimum of of $5.11 is recommended. However, when you choose which device you want to use the software on, an average price is quoted (for example, for an Apple Mac the average price paid is $7.33). OmmWriter is available for PCs, MACs and iPads.
WriteRoom for the MAC is devoid of all the usual word processor trappings and so you are completely free to concentrate on your writing. If you want to imagine you are back in simpler times when all a writer had was his trusty typewriter, then WriteRoom is for you.
Although WriteRoom claims to be thin on options, you can actually make a number of adjustments including changing the font, scroll options, scaling, and spell checking. WriteRoom also features a few essential tools such as word count and auto save functions and it is free to download.
FocusWriter for the PC is a lightweight, basic text writer, which is completely free from the distractions of the more complex word processing applications. In full-screen mode, there are no toolbars, just a background and your text and so you are completely free to concentrate on your writing.
There are some additional basic features such as search and replace and custom themes and in preferences, you can turn on auto save and also set goals for the day (by time or number of words) which is useful for professional writers. FocusWriter is free to download.
Write.app is a very simple web-based writing application which is described as ‘the most delightful writing experiences on the web’. It is free to use but if you upgrade for a one-off payment of just $5 not only will get access to some exclusive premium features including being able to post public or private notes just by sending an email and to send notes via text messages, you will also help keep the site up and running.
All of your writing is kept private by default and is encrypted both on and offline for extra security. However, not everything you write has to be kept private. For notes you want to publish, you can mark them as public and they will then be available for the whole world to see.