Every writer has its own style of writing. Mastering the skill of writing is not easy at all. It requires dedication, practice and knowledge. Without the solid writing skills no writer can join the effective and always-in-demand writers. Thanks to today’s development of the technology, the Internet has become full with various free outlining applications, grammar guides, writing software, and other tools and resources that can help the writers to easier research, create and publish their works, making this process less complicated and more efficient. Here are 10 tools and resources often used by writers to enhance their skills:
PlagTraker is a free online plagiarism checking tool that would particularly helpful for copywriters, bloggers and web site content writers. Checks about 14 billion pages and highlights all the phrases that could be found in other sources. Moreover, the tool is available in 6 languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian and Romanian.
yWriter was primarily designed to be used by novel writers, but later it was further developed to also be compatible for writing plays and non-fictional stories. This free software helps the writers to better keep track of their work, breaking their writing into chapters and scenes, this way leaving their minds free to be creative. This is particularly useful when writing large novels, with lots of scenes, different characters, plots, etc.
OpenOffice is a great office software set of tools used by writers for word processing, graphics, creating presentations, keeping databases, etc. The software is free for downloading, it is open-source and very easy to use.
RoughDraft is a free word processor designed for general use by different style writers. It has easy to use interface, with all the important features, like a built-in grammar and spellchecker, simple system for easy printing with preview that shows how exactly the page will look, instant backup of all open files, important shortcuts, options for importing files or opening up to 100 at once, extensive help system, as well as special modes for writing novels, short stories, articles, plays and screenplays.
Mindmeister is a free, secure, and easy to use mind mapping tool used to facilitate the collaboration between writers working on same projects in real time, with lots of features that allow them to directly exchange their thoughts, and ensure their work is save and no change is ever lost.
KTouch is a free tool that helps writers learn how to quickly and correctly touch-type on a keyboard, that way helping them increase their productivity and efficiency. It includes different level training sessions that correspond with the typing skill level, and has system that measures the typing speed and precision and displays them while typing.
Evernote is the perfect tool for those writers that cannot imagine working without constantly jotting down their ideas for later use or outlining their characters on notes spread all over their offices. With Evernote the writers can save and then later search their notes by keyword, tag or even by some printed and handwritten text inside an image, or even clip and share them on the web.
The Story Starter is an idea generator with over 300 million “first sentences” to get new ideas that the writers can use for writing short stories, novels, plays, scripts. This great tool was awarded the 101 Best Websites for Writers in 2012.
Merriam-Webster is one of the best free dictionaries and thesauruses that writers can use, and it also features other resources they might enjoy, like a vocabulary-building word of the day or maybe a free word game.
Urban Dictionary is a free dictionary and thesaurus for writers that use slang words and terms, or new words and popular phrases.