Write or Die, and Other Useful Writing Applications

Image: Morguefile

Image: Morguefile

Rather than just reblogging, I figured I’d give the simplified version of my Sarcastic Muse post from yesterday (the one about torture). If you want to read the history of how I started to suck at finishing my work, then you can see the whole post by clicking here. Otherwise, the useful, fun stuff is below:

There are online applications made to help writers who have problems getting their daily writing done: whether it’s starting, finishing, issues with meeting word count, drafting insecurities, or perfectionist problems, etc, etc. A few of these were fairly recently brought to my attention, and so I’ve been sort of testing the waters. If you have any (or all) of the above-listed problems, then try one (or all) of the following applications and see if it helps.

ilys: This is my current favorite, so it gets the top spot. You put your word count in at the beginning, hit start, and then you’re stuck looking at a large box that only permits one letter at a time. One letter. You like seeing the whole word? Not today! Perfect for people who constantly go back and reread as they’re writing.

Write or Die: This program doles out consequences or rewards, depending on your progress, and is therefore intended to motivate you with the threat of well-meaning torture. If you’re the kind of person who only runs when you’re being chased or refuses to back down from a challenge, then perhaps this one will work well for you. They have a free online version and a downloadable (but not free) desktop version.

Written? Kitten!: Do you spend hours of potential writing time looking at cat pictures? Look no more. With this program you can kill two birds words with one stone. Set your word count, reach it, and voila: a cat photo. The program also has the option of puppies or bunnies, if cats aren’t for you.

Scrawl: Scrawl uses the power of sound as motivation. You start stalling with the word count? Your ears will be begging you to write, write, write. It’s just annoying enough that you’ll probably listen (to your ears, that is). The rest of the site is pretty cool. Give it a look.

What are your thoughts on these applications?


4 thoughts on “Write or Die, and Other Useful Writing Applications

  1. Well that was a bit of fun. I just tried Ilys. I wrote two quick short stories about a gardenless caravan park I’m staying in called The Gardens Caravan Park. The writing relieved my disappointment. Thanks for the hints about these sites.

    • So the story version had lush, beautiful gardens, I hope?

      Glad to hear you gave it a try. I was resistant to trying any of them at first, but I find myself returning to ilys again and again, so . . . I figured others may have similar fortune! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Michelle, thanks for the fine comment you wrote on one of my posts. And also, thanks for these fire-starter sites. I plan on trying each of them in turn because I have all those problems you list (and more), and maybe one of the apps will kick my butt into gear. Congratulations on your recent publication.

    • No problem! Thanks for stopping by my site, too! Your post was spot on. I’ve read some of your other posts before, and I love the way you approach the subject of writing.

      Yes, do give them a try. These apps have certainly helped me a fair bit, though I still make excuses. (Don’t tell anyone.)

      And thank you, thank you. Now onwards, hopefully, to the next publication!

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