Essentials I couldn’t do without.
None of these tools will do the writing for you.
But they do help.
If you’re reading this to distract yourself from the fact that you’re procrastinating — that is, avoid what you know you’d better do: write — then please close this tab (screw my views), turn off your phone, and open a text document.
Now write. You’ll feel better afterward.
If, on the other hand, you’re reading this after you’ve achieved your daily goal — 500, 1,000, 2,000 words, it’s up to you — then you can stay. Congrats on reaching your goal, by the way.
I don’t bother with anything superfluous. These five tools are the only ones I use. Not so much for writing my book, but mostly for my daily blogging activity.
Without further ado, here they are.
Let’s put first the most specific one. DeepL will be of great help to people who write in a language other than their mother tongue.
You’ve probably already read some strange things in my prose. That is because I’m French.
After writing nearly 400 posts in English, I’m starting to get the hang of it, but I’m still frequently unsure of a sentence or even the turn of a whole paragraph.
For all those who are in the same situation, I recommend DeepL. It’s the best translation tool I’ve found so far.
This thing is super intelligent and subtle, it’s crazy.
This one is useful both for English and non-English natives. It’s a plug-in that you install on your browser which highlights suspected misspellings and mistakes and offers alternatives.
It also suggests removing all those unnecessary words like “really” and “actually”.
If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, you can click on the small green or red circle: it will suggest a whole other bunch of improvements to your text.
I don’t publish anything without running it through Grammarly.
When you have a word on the tip of your tongue, open Synonymy and type in a synonym of it. Chances are, the word you’re looking for will come up.
Synonymy is a thesaurus. It’s as useful when you’re not entirely satisfied with a word because you feel that it does not exactly encapsulate the right meaning, or when you have repetition in a sentence.
(In case any French people are reading me, the equivalent — which I find even better — is called Synonymo.)
4. Capitalize My Title
Type a sentence or copy and paste it, and this online tool instantly converts it into title cases or any other format.
No need to go into detail about it. All I can tell you is that this website is constantly open when I write.
I also use its built-in character counter to check that my title and subtitle do not exceed 100 characters. I find this number sufficient to give a maximum of details to my potential readers about what they can expect.
Evernote is home to a big part of my inner life.
From lists of books to read to lists of things to do, I use it every day. But mostly I use it to record all my blog post ideas.
When I’m out walking or doing anything, even when I’m trying to fall asleep at night, ideas come to me. When we allow our minds to rest, they tend to thank us this way.
I write everything down. EVERYTHING. As soon as I get the idea.
If I don’t, I can be sure I’ll forget — and so will you.