good writing app?

in Mac Software edited January 2014

I have been looking for good software to write a novel on. I usually work on short fiction and have been making do with Word. Word isn't going to cut it for long book with various characters and chapters. I also need to organize my ideas as they come and go.

In short, i need a simple but fairly thorough app on on which to layout, organize, and write a long book.

I have looked into Copywrite and Z-Write and they are both ok but have limitations that keep me from committing to them.

Thanks in advance for all your help.


  • Reply 1 of 7
    I do not have pages but according to the MacWorld First Look (by Rob G over at pages will not let you delete a page. For that reason, it may not be the best for the type of work described.

    I personally still like word is your best bet if just use different files and name them accordingly. I know it isn't perfect but Word is a powerful program; you can do a lot.
  • Reply 2 of 7
    hobbeshobbes Posts: 1,252member
    Well, the inability to delete or move pages in Pages 1.0 affects DTP far more than WP -- one tends to delete and move blocks of text when writing, not entire pages.

    Pages does offer TOC and in-document hyperlinks, FWIW.

    I think for a large writing task your best bet is still going to be breaking the book into different files, e.g. separate documents for each chapter, and a folder for notes and research. Don't expect one program to pack everything into one file.

    if you're interested in a separate notebook-style app for your various notes and ideas, Alepin (my choice) and VooDooPad are both very good.
  • Reply 3 of 7
    bergzbergz Posts: 1,045member
    There are a helluva lot of programs out there. Personally, I find them distracting. But then again, with my track record I'm probably not the best person to be asking. Here are some

    But there are so many out there that if you're really interested, post this same question on a writing forum. There you'd be more likely to find people with experience with one or more of these programs.

  • Reply 4 of 7
    If you want to organize both chapters and ideas in one project, then CopyWrite's worked really well for me. I mean, there really isn't much of a way to have both ideas and story in one place in a word processor like Word or what I use, Nisus Writer Express. But something like OmniOutliner (though I don't use this for writing) or CopyWrite (which works fantastic for me), or something like that, would probably be your best bet.
  • Reply 5 of 7
    Thanks for the replies. The link to the writers resource was very helpfull, looks like i have a lot of software to go through.

    Pages looks cool, i had a chance to play with it a bit at the apple store. However, it reminds me more of the (often useless) templates in word then something to organize my writing. I may buy iwork though instead of the upgrade to Word.

    Copywrite is very good but somehow the set-up just doesn't feel intuitive to me. It sorta distracts me from actually writing. However it does have the very cool feature that lets you change a name or whatever throughout the document.

    I very much like Z-write although the small window is wierd and the limited spell check also distracts me because i start focusing on little mistakes. So what i've been doing is writing in word and then copy and pasting into Z-write. It works but its annoying.

    Anyway, if i could find software that is as simple and easy as Z-write with some of the better features of Copywrite, i'd be all set.

    Or maybe i'm just procrastinating my writing again with all this.

    Thanks, i love to hear from people who have similar experiences.
  • Reply 6 of 7
    arnelarnel Posts: 103member
    You might also want to take a look at It seems pretty focussed on the task of writing and organising your writing notes rather than on layout or other sidetracking tasks like that...


    a.k.a. Arnel
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