Writing a novel has never been easier

There are several different software packages around that will enable your writing process and assist you in the mechanics of writing and make it all easier for you.

However, the ideas and how you work, will determine whether you make a successful novel or not. I do not know if these software packages will make you create the million dollar revenue bestselling novels out there. But, hey, it’s worth a try. When we look in the book store windows and see what type of stories makes the bestseller out there now these days. Then we see it is a matter of stories and concept. However the novelist has become more a marketing victim and we see that the marketing and sales machinery assists in a very good way to create the new bestseller.

Maybe these tools will have what it takes to create another one soon, or at least quicker than without the tools. I wish you the best of luck and with hopes that YOU will make the next bestseller, but best of all, that I will be one of your readers.

I have reviewed two software packages that can assist you in creating a novel, and also assist you in the recipe for your novel. Both software’s run on Mac OS, so if you have a PC, well, you are out of luck. The tools will not cut it for you my friend.

Mariner Storymill 3.0
Claimes it will aspire authors and assist them in multi-level writing methods of tracking characters, scenes, and locations. As the professional writers will appreciate StoryMill’s time-saving ability to oversee and manage the full creative process with Smart Views.
Jer’s Novel Writer
This program is made to fit a certain way to write. It is made to assist you overcome your shortcomings. So the software offer you to be a better writer, and hoping it will help you too.
This program is all about momentum, and reducing the number of things that break the flow when you write. Jer’s Novel Writer is designed to help you keep writing when the creative juices are flowing, and then find all the things you need to go over again when you are more in a nitty-gritty mood.
Both StoryMill and Jer’sNovel Writer have a solid set of word processing tools, including Spell checking and a full page view. Neither of them is as full-featured as Mellel or Word. But for the purposes of writing your Novel, they will get you out that starting gate.
StoryMill 3.0 starts from $49.95 and you have the opportunity to register for a try out period.
Jers Novel Writer is free. Both come with tutorials, and their special features can be learned in an hour.
Which is the better app for writing that novel? Its up to you and your story. Do you like to work from a recipe, with the ingredients all in a row? Then StoryMill is for you, letting you plan every chapter. Or do you like to throw in a dash of this, a dash of that, and write the recipe afterwards? Then Jer’s Novel Writer is for you.
My own preference is StoryMill since. I like to fire ahead and write, StoryMill lets you get on with it. The interface, with all the Database tabs, is like a comfy security blanket. Actors. Scenes. Action! If you are clear sighted enough to see beyond the novel to the movie adaptation, well, it is not a big leap from StoryMill’s structured approach to a movie script.
Both Novel Writer and StoryMill goes through the same elements and techniques in writing, though each does it in a different way.
StoryMill is for the writer who is less impulsive and more compulsive, who simply must have an outline and all the characters defined before putting down two words. Straight off, its Outline interface is there for you to create Actors, Scenes, and if you wish, other custom categories. This software is very handy for big stories with large casts. It even allows for start and end dates, for stories that may span years.
Jer’s Novel Writer is for the rocket launchers who just wants to burn rubber, and write the novel. There is a little work beforehand in the Project settings, where you structure your Novel into Books, Parts, or Chapters, or whatever hierarchy you wish, and set your Styles. Then you are off. Your database and outline are created on-the-go, with Control clicks, putting everything into a pop-out drawer to the right.
Ok, so I covered in detail two different types of noverl wrting software toolboxes. However there are others in the market and I give a brief overview of them below here.

There is a lot of good writing software out there for the Mac. Most of the programs linked to below are direct competition for Scrivener. I provide links because the writing process is different for everyone. Scrivener suits the way I write, and hopefully some others too, but if it doesn’t suit the way that you write, then you may want to check out some of the excellent software below to see if any of it fits the way you work.
WriteRoom is a dedicated full screen writing application for distraction-free writing. Imagine a better-looking TextEdit that can operate in a beautiful full screen mode. WriteRoom has deservedly caused quite a buzz among the Mac writing community for its simplicity, style and ability to help you concentrate on the text.

Ulysses, by Blue-Tec, was one of the first programs on the Mac to be aimed specifically at creative writers. It was also, to my knowledge, the first to offer a full-screen view for text-editing. It is a beautiful piece of software, though it only allows plain text editing and makes you use tags to define where you want italics to go, which never quite did it for me. The designers have a very strong design philosophy – if that philosophy matches the way you work, you will love this software; if not, you might find yourself frustrated at the lack of rich text and hierarchical organisation capabilities.

CopyWrite is perhaps the most popular creative writing software available for the Mac. As I understand it, CopyWrite has a similar gestation history to Scrivener: the author liked Ulysses but was frustrated by its limitations, so came up with his own writing management software. CopyWrite is rich-text and features full-screen editing and versioning. Personally, I find the the lack of hierarchical organisation limiting (there is only one level of categorisation), and I’ve always found it a little quirky in many ways, but plenty of people rave about it and it’s definitely worth checking out.

Storyist is the new kid on the block (along with Scrivener) of writing software. It’s a little like Jer’s (see above) but with a page layout view. It shows an outline on the left and your text on the right, and provides templates for character and location sheets. Specifically aimed at novel and story writing, as of 1.0 the import options are a little limited, but it looks like a promising application and is well worth a try.

PaperToolsPro has an interface that vaguely resembles that of Ulysses (see above), but it is mainly aimed at writers of research papers, dedicated to helping you assemble the paper whilst keeping track of references and avoiding plagiarism.

DevonThink is not so much writing software as a great database tool for your research, DevonThink is a very powerful organisational tool and does provide basic text-editing capabilities.

OmniOutliner is probably the most powerful – and certainly the most popular – outlining tool available for the Mac. It’s so good, that the basic version comes free with most new Macs these days. OmniOutliner provided inspiration for the outlining capabilities of Scrivener.

WriteItNow was originally designed for the PC, so the interface isn’t quite as pretty as the other writing software mentioned here because it isn’t written in Cocoa. Nonetheless, it provides hierarchical organisation of your work and some powerful research tools, and is worth a look.

MacJournal is blogging software rather than creative writing software, although you could bend it to creative writing if you really wanted to. It is very powerful, very easy to use, and has a lovely tabbed interface. It has also provided some inspiration for the new Scrivener interface. Recommended..


He has a background as civil engineer and geoscientist. He has worked mainly within the oil and gas industry from the mid 1980s. He has written some few fictional novels as well as author of some professional litterature within oil and gas sector, he is now an editor of some web sites, mainly within the travel business.

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