Get the brainstorming that is best, researching, writing, and editing tools
Whether you are wanting to weave together a jumble of ideas, fix split infinitives, or nail down that hard-to-think-of word, there are plenty of writing apps to help you. But vetting those tools and determining which fit best along with your writing style takes time.
That’s why we have done the lifting that is heavy you. Listed here 15 writing tools allow you to brainstorm, research, write, and edit better and faster—and they’re all free to use.
Tools for Brainstorming and Organizing Your Thoughts
Sometimes, the hardest part of writing is finding out what you would like to write about. In other cases, you understand precisely what you intend to write on, but your thinking are too disorganized to go forward. If you should be struggling with either issue, these tools will allow you to brainstorm and organize your opinions, getting them out of your head and onto the screen.
MindMeister (Web, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for expanding your thinking
Mind mapping is a brainstorming that is great for all kinds of writing projects. Whether you’re capturing thoughts for a phrase paper or thesis, putting together an outline for a blog that is long or ebook, or coming up with ideas for a unique novel or book series, mind mapping will allow you to capture your ideas and brainstorm new ones by triggering associations.
Even though a mind could be created by you map on paper or a whiteboard, MindMeister offers more flexibility. MindMeister is an instrument designed specifically which will make mind mapping easier, giving writers a way that is simple capture their ideas, organize them, and share these with others.
It doesn’t matter how big your mind map gets, MindMeister expands to offer the maximum amount of room as you need. Capture all of your ideas in a single file, rearrange and organize your opinions by dragging and dropping them, and connect ideas no matter what far apart they have been in your concerns map. With reasonably limited plan, you can even attach files that are related images to reference later.
MindMeister Pricing: Free for approximately three mind maps; from $4.99/month for the Personal plan that includes unlimited mind maps and file attachments.
Would you like to find out about mind mapping? Check out our mind mapping tutorial, or discover nine ways to use mind maps to jumpstart your projects.
WorkFlowy (Web, macOS, Windows, Chrome, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for creating content outlines
Well-structured writing starts with a well-structured outline. WorkFlowy makes outlining straightforward: the app allows you to quickly create an organized summary of any writing project and all of the parts bullet that is using and nested lists.
Start with the broad strokes—section names, big ideas, themes—and nest related details and research beneath those bullets. WorkFlowy now offers hashtag-based tagging and search features, which means you need not concern yourself with creating a lot of lists or letting bullet points run wild.
It is possible to zoom in on any list by clicking on the bullet point that is corresponding. Plus, in the event that you hover over a bullet point, you’ll see options to complete, add an email to, share, export, duplicate, or delete that item. Use the Complete choice to tick off sections of your outline while you finish writing them, or drag and drop bulleted lists to arrange your outline into logical sections.
WorkFlowy Pricing: Free for up to 250 list items per month; from $4.99/month when it comes to Pro that is workFlowy plan includes unlimited lists and items and customization options.
If WorkFlowy isn’t best for your needs, check our guide out towards the best outlining tools—many of which have free plans—to find the best app to meet your needs.
HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator (Web)
Best free writing software for brainstorming ideas
You want to write about but need to expand your ideas, mind mapping helps if you have a general idea of what. For those who have plenty of ideas but need to organize them, outlining helps. Exactly what about when you need to write something but do not have idea what to write about?
In that scenario, HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator helps. Enter up to five nouns into the generator, also it produces titles for five blog posts (or 250 if you should be happy to provide email address). While the titles it suggests are somewhat formulaic, it does provide ideas for unique angles it is possible to take along with your piece.
For instance, say you are known by you want to talk about conferences but aren’t sure what you need to say about them. Enter conferences to the Blog Ideas Generator, and you should get suggestions like “Conferences: Expectations vs. Reality,” “The Next Big Thing in Conferences,” and “This Week’s Top Stories About Conferences.”
You are able to take those suggestions and run with them, or go through them to try to trigger other ideas for topics and angles you have in mind writing about.
HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator Pricing: Free
If you attempt these tools and generally are still looking at a blank page, have a look at several of our favorite writing methods for generating ideas and overcoming writer’s block.
Once a topic is had by you in mind, it’s time to conduct your research and compile your notes. Whether you will need to transcribe an interview, access paywalled research papers, or see just what else has been published online, these tools often helps.
Evernote (Web, macOS, Windows, Chrome, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for compiling research
You can compile notes for your content by taking screenshots associated with research you need to include and pasting those screenshots in a Google Doc, scribbling down handwritten notes in a notebook, or creating a custom list of bookmarks. But each one of these choices are time-consuming and hard to locate. Evernote provides a simpler option.
Using Evernote’s web clipper, you can easily capture articles that are full in a few clicks. The articles are then added to Evernote where you are able to organize collected research into different notebooks, see the full-text of articles you’ve saved, search all your collected research at the same time, and share your collected research with others. Plus, you can easily automate your note taking with Evernote’s Zapier integrations.
With Evernote’s premium plan, you can use its app that is mobile to in handwritten notes, pages of books, and business cards. Scanned documents may also be searchable, which makes it easy to find what you’re hunting for no matter its format. This makes it a good location to keep things you may need to reference into the
Evernote Pricing: Free for up to 60MB uploads monthly, 25MB maximum note size, and Evernote apps on as much as two devices; from $7.99/month for the mobile app scanner, searchable PDFs, higher upload and note-size limits, and Evernote apps on unlimited devices.
If Evernote is not right for your requirements, find an alternate in our help guide to the note that is best taking apps.
Unpaywall (Chrome, Firefox)
Best free writing software for finding free copies of paywalled research
You conducted a Google search and discovered an outcome for a study paper or article that seems like it has precisely the data you need to cite. Unfortunately, you can’t read it since the site you landed on wants you to pay a fee to gain access to the version that is full-text.
In place of shelling out to read a paper which will or might not have the info you may need, use Unpaywall’s Chrome and Firefox extensions to see if there’s a free copy for the paper available anywhere online. It to open a free copy of the paper when you land on a result for a paywalled paper or article that’s available for free elsewhere, a green unlocked icon displays; click.
Unpaywall harvests data from sources like journals’ open-access repositories and university and government databases, ensuring you are never infringing copyright when you access a paywalled article for free.
Unpaywall doesn’t work on everything—for example, it won’t enable you to get at night paywall in your favorite news site—but if you wish to reference paywalled scholarly articles every once in awhile, it is absolutely worth installing to truly save yourself some time and cash.
Unpaywall Pricing: Free
Best free writing software for transcribing interview and video content
If part of your writing process consists of transcribing audio or video interviews or content, oTranscribe removes a few of the more time-consuming components of the process by putting your audio controls and word processor on a single screen. Simply upload your audio or video file, press play, and start typing your transcription onto the blank page.
This removes all of the back-and-forth of playing audio in one single app and typing in another. Plus, keyboard controls let you play and easily pause the audio by tapping the Esc key. Other controls enable you to