In this day and age, technology can be a writer’s best friend. While it’s easy to get lost in the dark depths of internet research and the battlefield that is social media, there are some nifty apps and sites out there that you really should be utilizing!
Cold Turkey is an app that you can download to your desktop. It’s function is to keep you from accessing the internet for websites you deem as a distraction, such as facebook, amazon, or twitter.
Once downloaded, you can make a list of sites you have an addiction to (it comes with a list pre-loaded with 24 distracting sites). Then, you set a schedule for when you want these specific lists to be blocked. Setting the schedule can be a bit tedious. I suggest doing it in batches, say for a week at a time or a month in advance if you have to.
I’ll let you know when I have more of this one figured out as I’m still playing with it.
Pacemaker is a really cool site that allows you to set goals and holds you accountable for them. It even allows you to add a nifty widget to your site!
Create an account with Pacemaker, it’s super quick and you can totally use your garbage email account. I did! Then, log in and start making your plans. It allows you to name it, pick your media, what you’re working on (drafting, revising, editing, etc), and then state how you plan on tackling this.
As you track your progress, it shows you a nifty graph. This shows what days you’ve done the most work and allows you to compare it to other days, weeks, etc.
For me, that means tackling revisions at a pace of around 10 pages a day per project.
I cannot stress enough how great Spotify is for someone who writes to playlists. Download the desktop app today and start making themed playlists, not only to write to, but to share with your readers so they can have an experience that brings them closer to the story.
There is such a great wealth of music available on Spotify (including a few anime intro cover artists, if you’re into that kind of thing). While it does have short adds, you can opt for the premium experience, but I haven’t felt the need for it during my time using the app.
I know not everyone likes to listen to music while they write. They notes and lyrics can often make the process muddled and confusing. Another option is A Soft Murmur. This simple to use site offers a number of simple sounds that might even correspond with a moment in your novel.
It offers rain, thunderstorms, waves, wind, fire, birds, crickets, cafe sounds, a singing bowl, and actual white noise. I had so much fun playing with these and I may bookmark this for when I start writing the fantasy novel dancing around my head.
I state this one with caution. It is far too easy to get lost in this website, falling down rabbit holes you never meant to find in the first place.Do your best to stick to the essentials here.
Pinterest is a great resource for inspirations (be it photographic or artistic), finding resources (on research and writing), and keeping it all in one place. By creating an account and profile, you can begin storing images and sites that inspire you on carefully organized boards. If you don’t want to share all of this with others, you can make the boards secret.
I’m pretty stoked that Pinterest evolved to allow more than two secret boards.